After securing $16 million in Series A funding last April, Databook, an AI-powered consultative sales intelligence company, is back, this time with $50 million in Series B funding.
With people still working remotely in the third year of the pandemic, Salesforce reported that 88% of salespeople feel that the “current economic conditions make it important to anticipate customers’ needs.” However, sales reps are often missing the strategic insights, relevant business use cases and personalized content needed to sell to executives.
This is where Databook comes in by providing tools, at the click of a button, that enable reps to become experts for their clients. Its customer base currently generates more than $300 billion in sales revenue each year and includes enterprise companies, like Salesforce, Microsoft and Databricks, which use this technology to improve the buying experience for customers, thus resulting in an increased revenue acquisition.
“Databook’s platform is a forcing function to uplevel the business acumen of your reps, help them prioritize their accounts, and aim their entire sales effort squarely at the business problem that it aims to solve,” Frank Perkins, AVP enterprise sales at Salesforce, said in a written statement. “Databook will revolutionize how you do account planning and how you prepare your reps to sell into their Accounts. And it does all of this in a way that is entirely accessible to the average sales rep. Game. Changer.”
Microsoft’s Venture Fund M12 led the Series A, and is also a follow-on investor in this oversubscribed Series B round helmed by Bessemer Venture Partners. Joining them are DFJ Growth and existing investors Threshold Ventures, Salesforce Ventures and Haystack.
Databook co-founder and CEO Anand Shah said via email the company wasn’t out to raise additional capital so soon. In fact, it had been seeing three-time revenue growth over the past four years, much of the demand coming with little marketing spend.
“We have a strong balance sheet, unique for our size and stage, but decided to take on additional funding right now in order to accelerate hiring to support the speed at which we are innovating and adding new clients to our roster,” Shah added.
Though the company had a number of investors vying to lead the round, Shah said Databook chose Bessemer, a firm it has known for a while, because it was “the No. 1 cloud SaaS investor with an excellent track record” and “they have an extensive investment and portfolio operations team that can significantly help us on our journey,” he added.
Shah intends to use the funding in three ways: The first is to hire across all areas of the business, including product, engineering, sales, marketing and customer success. The second is to expand into new industries like banking, life sciences, retail and consumer goods — all areas impacted by the shift to digital and which he says have made investments in customer relationship management and see the need for sales reps to be well-informed about their customers and need adequate time to sell effectively.
Customers leverage Databook’s global data set of 44,000 public and private enterprise companies, so the third area for the capital will be expansion into Europe and Asia-Pacific and investment in sales and marketing teams to complement the appointment, in 2021, of Peter Zuyderduyn, formerly with Accenture, as general manager in Europe.
The funding comes amid a plethora of changes going on with the company. Its valuation increased five-and-a-half times since the Series A round, and its employee headcount doubled. In addition, the company ended 2021 with 350% revenue growth, with the fourth quarter being its strongest quarter yet following the close of multiple seven-figure deals, Shah said.
“This is a direct testament to the rapid growth of our business and client base,” he added. “Thirty-eight percent of our company is from traditionally underrepresented communities in technology, and we are committed to high standards in diversity, equity and inclusion as we continue to hire.”
Some of that employee growth occurred at the executive level, with ex Googler Neil Smith joining as chief technology officer, Tamar Shor coming in as senior vice president of product after a stint at Treasure Data, and former Salesforce veteran Bruno Fonzi as vice president of engineering.
Meanwhile, Shah says Databook was a pioneer in consultative sales intelligence and continues to be a leader of this emerging category that is “the enterprise B2B sales priority right now.” Despite huge investments in account-based technologies and sales training, enterprise software remains inefficient, with an average of 41% of revenues being spent on sales and marketing teams. He estimates that on average, sales teams that use Databook achieve three times more pipeline, yield nearly two times larger deals and have a one-and-a-half times faster cycle time.
“As companies look toward the future, they must reassess the role of digital selling in the enterprise,” he said. “To create customer value and trust, every member of the go-to-market team must function as a strategic consultant — aligning buyers and sellers with complete solutions that solve for specific business outcomes.”