Ceros takes a big step forward in fundraising today, with the announcement that it has raised a $ 100 million investment led by Sumeru Equity Partners.
Ceros provides a platform for clients such as NBC, United Airlines, Snap, McKinsey, IBM, Condé Nast, JP Morgan, Red Bull and Pinterest to create what it calls “digital experiences” – basically, beautiful. graphics and websites – without having to write any code. (You can see some of the best examples in the Ceros Inspire gallery.) According to Crunchbase, it has already raised $ 33.5 million in total funding.
SEP, meanwhile, is a technology-driven growth fund that has backed companies like GoGuardian, Social Chorus and Talend.
Ceros CEO Simon Berg recalled that the firm’s partners have been “wooing” him for two years. These conversations started to get more serious, until the COVID-19 pandemic put them on hold.
Berg said as the country went into lockdown he had a plan in place to ensure that no one at Ceros lost their job – if cuts were needed, they would come in the form of pay cuts. general. And he was impressed with the way the SEP team responded.
“They weren’t shouting, ‘You should cut staff,’ none of the things I would expect,” he said. “They were cheering from the sidelines which made me appreciate it even more. “
And after the initial panic, Berg said he had become “hyper focused and energetic,” fueled by his belief that “adversity and compulsion are the birth of creative thinking.” Apparently, this optimism has been confirmed by increased activity on the Ceros platform, including the return of old customers.
“This is our opportunity and our mission to tell the world that digital experiences are as important as your physical experiences,” he said. So, during a pandemic, “If your digital presence is your only presence, you better make sure [it’s] Well.”
In addition to SEP, existing Ceros investors also participated in the new round. For his part, Sanjeet Mitra of SEP said he was first drawn to the company because it created “a sophisticated, enterprise-grade tool that is easy to use and that designers respect because it allows them to create fantastic content ”.
Going forward, Berg said we can expect more products like the recently launched MarkUp design collaboration tool to be created, especially as brands need to “create experiences faster, and you don’t. cannot do this if you send PSD files over the internet. by email.”
Mitra said the company also plans to use the new funds to make acquisitions. (He pointed out that it would not just be an indiscriminate deployment strategy – an idea that made Berg choke on it – but that he will instead focus on products than Ceros customers. really want.) This will also fund further international growth.
“Simon has the capabilities to be a global business leader and certainly a public business leader someday, if he so chooses,” Mitra said.