Talkdesk, A Startup That Spins Up Call Centers, Raises $15M

Talkdesk, which creates software that helps companies create digital call centers that integrate with their other internal company software, said it has raised $15 million.

Companies use Talkdesk to create centers where customers can call into in order for assistance and feedback. Those calls are connected to internal company databases like Salesforce and Zendesk, which bring up all the relevant information about a caller in order to help a customer service representative better resolve the issue or route that customer to the best person.

For example, when someone calls customer service and the call is routed through Talkdesk, the software automatically puts information about the caller in front of the customer service representative. Examples of that would be order details, how much that person usually spends, their name, or other bits of information that are useful to representatives that help them more quickly resolve an issue.

Call centers aren’t in decline, Talkdesk CEO Tiago Paiva said — though, of course, it’s in his best interest to say something like that given that his company builds software around them. But the company has around 2,000 customers so far and for the most part, it’s an industry that hasn’t seen any dramatic changes on the level of something like what Zenefits did for HR.

talkdesk team tiago paiva“People are used to email, chat, but if you think about it, when you call, that experience will be more important,” Paiva said. “You might call less often, but when you call you really need a problem solved. When you order something and the food isn’t there or something, you’re not going to expect to email and get a response in 24 hours. You want to call immediately.”

A lot of work has already gone into the technology part of the company, and now it’s time to start aggressively selling it, Paiva said. He plans on hiring around 40 sales people in the next 7 months or so. If all that goes well, Paiva hopes Talkdesk can then go for an initial public offering.

“Just because we are raising $15 million doesn’t mean we’re at a low valuation,” he said. “We pretty much got a great deal. All the money we raised since the beginning of the company, we pretty much have that in the bank. We had the opportunity to raise double the amount, but we rejected that.”

TalkDesk launched in 2011 and has raised around $18 million in total. It was also a Startup Battlefield contestant at TechCrunch Disrupt NY in 2012.