French startup Mailjet just raised $11 million (€10 million) from existing investor Alven Capital as well as Iris Capital and Seventure Partners. As a reminder, Mailjet is an email delivery service that works for both marketing campaigns and transactional emails.
“Mailjet’s distinctive feature is that we tackle both markets — marketing and transactional,” CEO Alexis Renard told me. “It’s different for MailChimp as they have two different products under two different names [MailChimp and Mandrill], Campaign Monitor only does marketing. But our market is evolving toward emails that are not entirely transactional nor marketing emails.”
Renard could be well-positioned to handle this new sort of emails by developing a single product under one brand. But first, a quick recap. What is a marketing campaign and transactional emails? What these companies call a marketing campaign is a newsletter or any kind of mass email list that you subscribed too. It’s not particularly tailored to you. A transactional email is an automatic email sent to you and only you. For example, it can be an email to confirm your email address after signing up to a web service or a purchase receipt.
These are two very different beasts. Transactional email services need to have a reliable API, send email as quickly as possible and never fail — Mailjet started with transactional emails. Marketing email services need to be able to send hundreds of thousands of emails even if it takes a few minutes, have a good reputation with Google, Microsoft or Yahoo so that your newsletter doesn’t end up in the spam folder, and provide tools to customize the design of your emails.
“Around 30 percent of ours clients only send marketing campaigns, 30 percent only send transactional emails and 40 percent send both,” Renard said. Mailjet now sends 600 million emails per month for 32,000 clients and monthly recurring revenue has jumped 70 percent year over year. Recently, the company has launched a new visual template designer to easily create responsive campaigns.
With today’s funding round, the team will grow to 100 employees before year-end. While the company has mostly been working with small companies, it is now looking for bigger clients as well, such as the Galeries Lafayette. Last year, Mailjet raised a €2.2 million Series A round before making a big bet on marketing emails. And it looks like it is slowly but surely paying off.