Cloud document editing company Nitro just got $15 million from Battery Ventures. Nitro previously raised two undisclosed rounds from Australian venture capital firm Starfish Ventures, bringing the total up to $21.6 million now.
The San Francisco-based startup made a name for itself in the PDF space. It’s product Nitro Pro was the first competitor to Adobe Acrobat. According to Nitro, almost half a million companies use its products globally now, including 50 percent of the Fortune 500. However, the company has made a few changes in focus over the last year with the new Nitro Cloud product. This enables more document sharing, signing, and collaboration and positions Nitro as more of a competitor to Adobe’s EchoSign and Docusign.
Most (possibly all) operating systems come with some form of a PDF reader out of the box, but they don’t allow for editing and easy ways to share. This is definitely the pain point Nitro and Acrobat attempt to solve. Nitro now takes this a step further with Nitro Cloud, which allows you to create, convert, edit and sign the PDF right within your browser. The new Nitro also allows real-time changes and tracking across devices. “Why should you need to buy half a dozen different products or services just to create, share, collaborate, acquire signatures, and so on?” asks Sam Chandler, Nitro CEO and founder.
There are a lot of different companies trying to figure out a solution in this space. EchoSign and Docusign (mentioned above) are a couple that stand out. Google Docs could also arguably be added here. Though Chandler doesn’t see what he’s doing as competitive with Google Docs. “Google Docs is primarily an authoring tool. We’re about document sharing for business workflows, where you want to get something signed, approved, or where you have business logic and security or content protection requirements around that share,” he says. Chandler also points out that Nitro can integrate with Google Drive. He believes the funding will help with what he calls the “ecosystem roadmap” to expand Google integrations and help with marketing.
“In terms of competing, we’re carving out our own space, and we are already a profitable business so we know how to sustainably compete, but a bigger balance sheet always helps.” says Chandler.