500 Startups-Backed Twilio Raises $17M More From VCs

Twilio, a 500 Startup’s portfolio company that provides cloud-based telephony services, has raised a $17 million Series C round from Bessemer Venture Partners and Union Square Ventures. The San Francisco-based company has now aised more than $15 million in venture funding from 500 Startups, Bessemer, Union Square, Founders Fund, Lowercase Capital and numerous angel investors, including Manu Kumar of K9 Ventures, Chris Sacca, David Cohen and Jeff Fluhr, among others.


Twilio Announces $17 Million in Series C Funding from Bessemer Venture Partners and Union Square Ventures

●      Round C funding is from existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners and Union Square Ventures

●      Twilio plans to use the funding to accelerate its growth internationally

●      Twilio is also aggressively hiring http://twilio.com/jobs

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – December 7th, 2011 — Twilio (http://www.twilio.com), the cloud communications company, announced that it has raised a $17 million Series C round of funding from Bessemer Venture Partners and Union Square Ventures, who were also investors in Twilio’s Series B round.

The Series C round comes at the end of an eventful 2011 for Twilio. This year, the company grew its customer base by 400% to nearly 75,000 developers, expanded its offering overseas to Europe, and expanded its product line dramatically with the introduction of SMS Short Codes, Twilio Client and Twilio Connect. The company now employs nearly 100 people, with most located at its San Francisco headquarters.

Twilio is the market-leading cloud communications platform. The company simplifies a century of complex telecommunications technologies into simple, web-based building blocks that anyone with access to basic programming skills can configure. Tens of thousands of companies and software developers use Twilio to easily build voice, VoIP and text messaging capabilities into their existing applications, or build totally new kinds of communications applications from scratch. Unlike traditional telecom vendors, Twilio requires no contracts and charges no upfront fees. Customers only pay for the resources they use, when they use them, and nothing else.

“At Twilio, we’re opening the black box of telecom to developers and companies that can now innovate in this previously esoteric field,” said Jeff Lawson, CEO and co-founder of Twilio. “With this new round of funding, we look forward to expanding that mission.”

Because of Twilio’s simplicity, scalability and risk-free pricing model, the community of developers and businesses on its platform has grown to nearly 75,000 customers in just three years. These customers have built a vast array of communications applications, including web-based distributed call centers, voice and SMS notification systems, hosted IVRs, conferencing solutions, group messaging apps and much more.

Twilio, which announced its product availability in the United Kingdom in October, plans to continue its expansion into Europe. All told, Twilio intends to offer its services locally in twenty European countries in the coming months – including Poland, France, Portugal, Austria, Denmark, Italy, Romania, Greece, Belgium, Czech Republic, Hungary, Sweden, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Finland. The company also opened a London office in support of the European expansion.

“We have had the privilege of working with Twilio for three years, beginning with our initial investment in their seed round in early 2009,” said Byron Deeter, partner at Bessemer Venture Partners, who joined the Twilio board during their Series B round. “Jeff and his exceptional team have exceeded our expectations, grabbing the hearts and minds of over 75,000 developers and creating thousands of new products and companies in the process. We look forward to watching them continue to take market share in the exciting and massive telephony applications market.”

Bessemer is a longtime investor in SaaS and voice, having backed companies including Skype, VeriSign and Cornerstone OnDemand.

“There are very few opportunities to create new platform companies,” said Albert Wenger, a partner at Union Square Ventures. “Twilio has figured out how to make communication networks accessible to all developers, unlocking many new use cases. With this financing they are really well positioned to grow as a new cloud communications platform.”

Twilio will use the money to continue expanding its offerings around the world and to build out its team. The company is hiring positions in sales, marketing, and engineering. Interested candidates should visit http://twilio.com/jobs

About Twilio
Twilio (www.twilio.com), the cloud communications company, is reinventing telecom by merging the worlds of cloud computing, web services and telecommunications. Twilio provides a telephony infrastructure web service in the cloud, allowing web developers to integrate phone calls, text messages, and IP voice communications into their web, mobile, and traditional phone applications. The company is privately held and is headquartered in San Francisco, California.

About Bessemer Venture Partners
Bessemer Venture Partners is a global venture capital firm with offices in Silicon Valley, Cambridge,Mass., New York, Mumbai and Herzliya, Israel. One of the longest standing venture capital practices in the United States, BVP has partnered as an active, hands-on investor in Ciena, LinkedIn, Celtel, Blue Nile, Skype, Staples and Yelp. More than 100 BVP-funded companies have gone public on exchanges in Canada, India, the U.K. and the United States. Learn more at www.bvp.com and www.bvp.com/cloud

About Union Square Ventures
Union Square Ventures is one of the leading venture capital firms investing in Internet and mobile Internet businesses. For more information, visit www.usv.com