Slidebean picks up $850K and launches a new version of its presentation-building tool

Slidebean, the app that wants to take on Prezi and PowerPoint, is launching version 3.0 of the service on the heels of an $850K seed round from CaraoV.

The idea behind Slidebean is relatively simple. Presentations/decks are a fact of life for many professionals, but creating those presentations isn’t as simple as inputting the information you want. More often than not, professional decks require an actual designer to come in and work on layout, or force the laymen to spend extra time tweaking fonts, colors, alignment, etc.

Slidebean wants to get rid of all that extra work by letting you choose a color palette and font up-front, as well as a design template, and then simply inputting information slide by slide. With a single click, users can change the entire look of their presentation.

Slidebean originally launched in 2014 from DreamIt Demo Day as a bootstrapped company, offering a free version of the app via web and a $4.99/month version for the actual app.

Shortly after, the company realized it would need to make more money to stay in business, and hiked pricing up to $49/month. It argued that businesses would pay more to save time, and the argument seemed to work.

More than 7,500 companies use Slidebean to make presentations, and those users have built more than 100,000 presentations on the platform, according to the company.

Version 3.0 has tweaked the interface to make it even more simple.

“We found that people felt the interface was too unfamiliar, and that they would struggle to use it,” said Slidebean CEO and cofounder Jose Cayasso. “We wanted the new version to feel somewhat similar to something users already know, like PowerPoint, while still handling slide generation and arrangement automatically.”

Alongside a redesigned interface, the new Slidebean also offers insights. Users can see how many times their presentation has been opened and see engagement on a slide-by-slide basis. This could come in handy for startups sending out pitch decks to investors.

The new Slidebean is being priced at $8/month for a base plan, which includes Insights. A premium plan runs $19/month, and includes a dedicated design team and customer success team access for folks who need help with their presentations, along with a custom-built template based on company colors. Slidebean also offers a team plan, which includes three seats, for $39/month, with the option to add seats for an extra $10/month/seat.

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this article stated that 500 Startups led the investment round. 500 Startups is an existing investor in Slidebean, and participated in this round, but did not lead it.