Electric.ai, the New York-based startup that offers chat-based IT support, has announced the close of a $25 million Series B round led by GGV. As part of the deal, partner Jeff Richards will be joining the board.
Founder Ryan Denehy launched Electric in 2016. Previously, he’d run two startups that were sold to USA Today Sports and Groupon, respectively, where he realized that all of the simplicity that came with using a service like Zenefits simply didn’t exist in the IT world.
“It was all local service providers, and they all charge way too much money,” said Denehy. “I thought ‘this is so nuts!’ Companies are using more and more technology every day.”
With his second startup, Swarm, he saw even more clearly how big of a problem this was as the company sold a product that required hardware installation at retailers.
“We were building a company on top of local IT providers, and I saw up close and personal how difficult it was and how fragmented the industry was.”
And so, Electric was born.
The premise is relatively simple. Most of IT’s tasks focus on administration, distribution and maintenance of software programs, meaning that the individual IT specialist doesn’t necessarily need to be desk-side troubleshooting a hardware issue.
Companies using Electric simply install its software on every corporate laptop, giving the top IT employee or the org’s decision-maker a bird’s-eye view of the lay of the land. They can grant and revoke permissions, assign roles and make sure everyone’s software is up to date. By integrating with the APIs of the top office software programs, like Dropbox and G Suite, most of the day-to-day tasks of IT can be handled through Electric’s dashboard.
This leaves IT professionals time to focus on actual troubleshooting, hardware installation, etc.
For startups that haven’t yet hired an IT person, Electric connects startups that need help with installation or in-person troubleshooting with local vendors.
Electric says it has automated around 40 percent of IT tasks, with plans to automate 80 percent of IT tasks over 2019.
The company currently has around 300 customers, which rounds out to about 10,000 total users, and serves 10 U.S. markets, including New York, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago and Austin, among others.
The new funding brings Electric’s total funding amount to $37.3 million.