Twilio Fund Europe 2013, the new “micro-fund” from cloud communications company Twilio and startup accelerator 500 Startups, has unveiled its first investment: Irish Galway-based OnePageCRM, the cloud-based CRM targeting small businesses or SMEs. The amount being invested remains undisclosed, but it’s likely to be less than $100,000. This is a micro-fund after all.
Announced back in March at London Web Summit, and following along the same lines as Twilio’s U.S. fund (backed by 500 Startups and SV Angel), Twilio Fund Europe is charged with investing in European startups making use of Twilio’s cloud communication web service APIs. In addition to seed funding, backed startups receive free Twilio credits, an all expenses paid trip to San Francisco to attend Twilio’s own annual conference, TwilioCon, and Twilio’s PR and marketing machine.
As we noted when OnePageCRM raised an earlier $749,000 funding round, the CRM market is a very crowded one, from giants like Salesforce to a plethora of smaller players and startups (seriously, I can barely keep track of these things). However, inspired by the GTD movement, OnePageCRM’s pitch is that it takes a “zero-admin” approach that isn’t just designed to help manage contacts and track sales, but to actually help sell.
Starting from the premise that a lot of sales management software and CRMs require too much data entry and admin, the company set out to design a cloud-based and mobile offering that would be as simple as using email, with a UI that resembles the workflow of an in-box, hence its “OnePage” branding.
Rather than relying on an A-Z view, contacts, with their associated follow-up task, automatically float to the top of the list and turn red when action is required. Staying within that single dashboard, each time you complete a sales action, such as making a follow-up call or sending over a proposal, you’re prompted to decide what’s next and when. The contact then moves down the list and floats to the top again after the time is up.
“Essentially you’re trapping prospects in a continuous loop until you get them over the line,” OnePageCRM CEO and co-founder Michael FitzGerald told me back in April.
In a statement published on OnePageCRM’s blog, FitzGerald says of today’s new funding: “We will be using our new investment to expand the existing team across all disciplines, as well as to introduce some Twilio-powered functionality that will make a notable difference to our customers’ experience with us.”
I’m told that specifically Twilio-powered features will include implementing “click-to-call” and automatically recording telephony activity.
[Image via Enterprise Ireland]