M-Files Raises $7.8M Series A For Its Metadata-Powered Enterprise Content Management Solution

Finnish startup M-Files, a provider of a metadata-powered content management solution targeting the enterprise, has closed a €6 million (~$7.8m) series A round led by DFJ Esprit, with participation from Finnish Industry Investment. It says it will use the fresh injection of capital to fuel its growth plans in the U.S., and bolster sales and marketing via partner channels globally.

Described as shunning the outdated folder structure traditionally used by enterprise-wide document management systems, which is said to date back to the ’80s, M-Files’ solution is based on a metadata approach that cares less about where documents/content is stored — on-premise, in the cloud, or a hybrid of the two — and instead manages information based on what it is. One way to think of its approach, says the company, is the way a user’s iPhone doesn’t surface the device’s file structure but only the content and related metadata, where you’d expect to find it, such as music and the iTunes app (tracks, artists, genre etc.).

Or, as M-Files CEO Miika Mäkitalo says in a statement, “Think Enterprise Document Management 2.0, or the combined power of Dropbox AND Documentum but for enterprise-scale businesses.”

Okay then.

To the end user, files show up on their desktop just like any shared drive. Navigation is via the Windows Explorer UI, while Windows applications are supported using standard “File Open” or “Save” commands. M-Files also integrates with other enterprise systems such as CRM, ERP and Accounting systems, including Salesforce CRM, Microsoft Dynamics CRM (online and on-premise), Dynamics GP, AX and NAV, and NetSuite.

Having expanded out of its home base of Tampere, Finland, M-Files already claims a number of enterprise customers in the U.S. such as AstraZeneca, SAS, Pandora, the United Nations, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Charles Schwab, Hecla Mining, and Hill+Knowlton.

Alongside today’s funding, the company is announcing that Jim Geary and Bob Suh, described as “proven technology leaders” (Accenture, Perot Systems, and Pedestal Software), and DFJ Esprit’s Mikko Suonenlahti, have joined M-Files’ Board of Directors.