C9 Hires A New CEO And Raises $12M For Sales Forecasting SaaS

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C9 has a new CEO and $12 million in funding for its platform that helps customers forecast sales revenues. The Series D round was led by existing investors Mayfield Fund, InterWest Partners and Leapfrog Ventures. The company has raised a total of $40 million.

New CEO Michael Howard previously worked as chief marketing officer at EMC Greenplum. He replaces former CEO Jim Burleigh who is now Chief Operating Officer at Engine Yard. Founder Scott Weiner sits on the C9 board of directors.

C9 describes itself as a revenue performance management company. Its analytics platform helps companies gain insights through historical trends. It looks at what deals are not going to close or what is wrong with deals starting at the beginning of the quarter to help companies focus on the most important accounts or determine how to improve the sales process.

Underneath the hood is a data analytics technology that processes information with a NoSQL database. On top of it is an SQL layer for doing queries. It also has a data cache for in-memory analytics. Through its sales reports and dashboards, customers set filters that allow a data analyst to see in real time how sales are faring.

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C9 competes with companies, such as Tibco Spotfire, Tableau Software, Lattice Engine and Birst, and customers include LinkedIn, Pandora and Thomson Reuters. It gets decent, but not across-the-board excellent reviews. On Trust Radius, one customer cited C9′s real-time views into the sales pipeline but dinged it for outages and occasional syncing issues with Salesforce.com. That’s enough for one DocuSign sales operations manager to consider different platforms. One customer said it is an excellent tool for sales, but a broader business intelligence tool might be just as useful.

The market for predictive analytics is getting more competitive with the advent of powerful data-analytics options. For companies like C9, the focus will have to be on quality of service. There is nothing worse than having a service fail that customers depend on to run their businesses.