Pigment, a planning and forecasting platform for fast-growth companies, has secured $73 million in Series B funding. Greenoaks led the round.
15th November 2021, Paris: Pigment, the planning and forecasting platform for fast-growth companies, has announced a $73 million Series B to become the central business planning solution powering Finance, HR, Sales and Marketing decisions. This comes just a year after Pigment’s Series A and the company’s promise to reboot the spreadsheet. Pigment’s intuitive platform, which anyone can use and understand in minutes, allows leaders and analysts to understand all of their business data better and anticipate the impact of their decisions with unprecedented speed and flexibility.
The investment was led by US heavyweight Greenoaks with Series A investors participating, including New York-based FirstMark Capital and Blossom Capital. Pigment will use the funds to hire employees and increase resources to meet massive demand from clients, and to expand their footprint in the US and European markets.
For too long, Finance and Business teams have had to adapt to expensive and complex tools or error-prone Excel spreadsheets to understand their business, operating in isolation from the rest of their company’s functions. But in a remote-first world, the need for online collaboration capabilities that allow true team alignment has never been stronger. Since its Series A in December 2020, Pigment has further developed their platform to allow any leader in an organisation to adopt a common language around the numbers that matter, and to work on them in real time with their teams. The platform has native integrations with Workday, Netsuite, Salesforce and many other SaaS solutions.
The platform is seeing rapid uptake. In less than a year, Pigment has signed some of Europe’s fastest growing businesses, including ManoMano, Melio, Deliveroo, Spendesk, Blablacar, and Cheerz. Those companies chose Pigment to inform important business decisions under the tight timeframes required of the competitive space they operate in: validating and tracking hiring plans across fast-growing teams, expanding – or deciding not to – in new markets, defining new customer segmentation, raising a new round or planning an IPO. In addition, Pigment’s potential is drawing top talent. Tech hotshots Julien Lesaicherre and Rebeca Tristan recently left Facebook – where they were in charge of Workplace’s success – to join the Pigment mission as Head of Business and Head of Customer Experience, respectively. The company aims to triple the size of their business team by Q1 22.
Pigment has grand ambitions for the US market, having just signed new flagship US clients, Melio, Algolia, and Gong, one of the fastest growing US sales companies. Pigment plans to open US offices in New York and Silicon Valley, hiring across all sales and support functions in 2022.
Eléonore Crespo & Romain Niccoli, Co-Founders and Co-CEOs of Pigment said: “In every category from sales to marketing, innovation has happened – but the most strategic decisions still rely on analysts spending long, painful hours on Excel. We want to help fast growth companies see, understand, and imagine the full spectrum of their business by creating a common language around the numbers that matter. And the proof we’re succeeding in that goal can be seen in our client’s recent successes!”.
Neil Shah, at Greenoaks Capital said: “Financial planning & analysis is a critical business function. But today, most companies rely on software that hasn’t evolved in years — either outdated spreadsheets that are inflexible and don’t scale, or expensive and overly-complex FP&A suites that require an industry of consultants to support them. Today’s businesses demand agile and intelligent tools that will help them make better decisions more quickly. That’s why we were excited to meet Pigment, which is bringing a world-class engineering team and an exceptional product to a timely problem. We believe that the company will rapidly become the market’s clear leader in planning software, building faster and for broader use cases than any competitor, and delighting their customers along the way. Greenoaks is thrilled to partner with them at this exciting moment in their journey.”
Paul Melchiorre, former CEO of business planning giant Anaplan, said: “I’ve been in the enterprise planning business since my time at SAP in the early 1990s. I recently led the largest player in the space, and I can honestly say that Pigment’s platform is the most flexible and comprehensive. Pigment will be transformative for the start-up ecosystem because it will be at the core of successful and sustainable growth strategies, tailor made for the next generation of leaders. It will allow them to deliver on high expectations set by increasing levels of funding, and plan for uncertain scenarios while being socially and environmentally mindful.”
Herut Uval, Strategic Finance lead at Melio, said: “ After previously using many different planning tools, I can confidently say Pigment’s UI is one of the strongest I have seen, allowing our team to understand and use everything very efficiently. Thanks to Pigment, we’ve been able to automate our reforecast process and easily add new products in our models, which enables us to better anticipate our future P&L to support our growth in the US market. We’ve recently raised $250 million in a ripe market for payments solutions and our monthly processing volumes have surged 5,000% over the past 18 months. In order for us to make timely decisions that support our growth in the long term we need an agile business planning platform – which is exactly what Pigment provides.”
Jonathan Christodoulides, Head of FP&A at Deliveroo, commented: “Following the recent IPO, Deliveroo needed to find a financial planning tool that would help us achieve our ambitious growth, at scale and sustainably – we had outgrown Gsheets and Excel for our planning process. We chose Pigment because they are the only tool on the market that can be implemented quickly, intuitively and flexibly, that is powerful enough to handle complex planning and forecasting needs, and that can allow our entire team to work as one. Our Financial Planning & Analysis team used to spend a significant amount of time preparing or collating data and less time analysing or providing new scenarios. Thanks to Pigment, we are moving towards a world where we spend more time adding value.”
Pigment was founded in 2019 by Eléonore Crespo, a former data analyst at Google and investor at preeminent European venture capital firm Index Ventures, and Romain Niccoli, the former CTO and co-founder of Criteo – the ad-tech company that is one of Europe’s most prominent tech success stories, following a successful NASDAQ IPO in 2013 and annual revenues of over $2 billion USD.
Crespo and Niccoli identified three key roadblocks in planning and reporting. One was a lack of transparency and insight into underlying data behind their business; two was the sheer quantity of data they had to get their head around; and three was the static way it was presented, which made it hard to change and manipulate. As a result, planning and reporting wastes a lot of time and money, and the inevitable mistakes hamper almost all organisations – as shown by reports in 2020 that an error in a UK government spreadsheet caused many thousands of Covid-19 cases to go unreported, when an Excel file reached its maximum size and failed to update.