It’s easy to say that most executives in the $50 billion world of business-to-business marketing would kill for a tool that can analyze customer data and figure out exactly who to market to and when to pitch them. San Francisco-based Radius has raised $54.7 million from a who’s who of venture capital’s heavy hitters and former titans of the financial services industry, averting the need for any bloodshed whatsoever.
“Marketing automation 2.0 is going to be about intelligence,” says Radius chief executive Darian Shirazi. “The only way to build great marketing intelligence is if you have a core interest and core competency in data science.”
The company tracks 40 million small- and medium-sized businesses across the U.S. and uses the data it collects to provide detailed information to marketers about targeting the right business at the right time.
It’s the marketing version of RelateIQ, which SalesForce bought for nearly $400 million, and it’s going after a much, much bigger market.
“Marketing is focused on casting a wide net [while] the sales person is focused on a few accounts and getting those accounts to convert,” says Shirazi. “If [Salesforce] is willing to pop to $500 million, then we’re quite a bit larger than that given marketing budgets.”
Existing investors BlueRun Ventures and Formation 8 Partners participated in the latest round, alongside new investments from Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund, Glynn Capital Management, Slow Ventures (the venture fund launched by Dave Morin), Western Technology Investment, and Yuan Capital, a Chinese investment fund connected to China’s political and economic establishment.
Individual investors in the round included John Mack, the chairman of Morgan Stanley, Microsoft Corporate vice president Charles Songhurst, and academy award winner and entrepreneur Jared Leto (whose personal investments seem to be crushing right now since he’s in Radius, Wish and Zenefits).
No one was added to the board following the round, because of the existing all-star board of Joe Lonsdale from Palantir Technologies, Addepar and Formation 8; Facebook founding team member Andrew McCollum; Scott Thompson from Shoprunner and Jonathan Ebinger from BlueRun.
The presence of Yuan Capital in the round gives a fair signal for how far Radius could expand, but Shirazi was mum on timing. “The interesting part is that we don’t plan on spending fast. We’re going to hire as many great data scientists as we can,” Shirazi says.
Beyond that Shirazi has left himself one stated goal: making sure that Radius dominates the market. “If you look at the incumbents in the market, they’re Dunn & Bradstreet, which is 150 years old and had Abe Lincoln as one of its employees,” Shirazi says. “There shouldn’t be companies that are 150 years old.”
Image by Flickr user Carsten Schertzer under a CC BY 2.0 license