There are some startups that behave like sprinters, and others that run a marathon. I came across Instabug when I was in Cairo in 2013. Born during the chaotic era of the Arab Spring, this plucky startup managed to make it to TechCrunch Disrupt, then Y Combinator in 2016, then a $1.7 million in seed round led by Accel Partners. Originally part of the Egyptian accelerator Flat6Labs Cairo, they raised $300,000 from angel investors in 2013.
Today they announced a $5 million Series A round, once again led by Accel. Other angel investors joining include Amr Awadallah, co-founder of Cloudera, and Jim Payne, founder and CEO of MoPub, both of whom have invested previously.
Instabug provides mobile developers with real-time insights throughout the app life cycle, with its bug and feedback reporting, secure crash reporting and in-app surveys. All the more important these days, given so many people are relying on apps during their pandemic lockdowns.
Omar Gabr, co-founder and CEO of Instabug, said in a statement: “We’ve been working with Accel since 2016 and we’re very excited to continue our partnership. We grew 120% in revenues in the last 12 months, adding dozens of Enterprise customers. We’ve always been running a disciplined business, we’re almost profitable for some time now. This is what made our fundraising fast in the middle of all the current events. Our fundraising conversations with Accel started after the pandemic outbreak.”
Instabug says that since the COVID-19 outbreak, it has seen a “massive surge” in usage, which has grown 45% since January. It’s also designed to streamline the communication between QA and developers, which is very relevant now, as many are working remotely.
Some 28 of the top 100 apps on the App Store use Instabug. Several competitors have been acquired, including Crashlytics (by Google) and HockeyApp (by Microsoft).
Given that the startup still has most of its team in Egypt, this is once again a great win for the MENA region.