Canadian software startup Influitive raises $30.5 million

Thu Jul 9, 2015 12:48pm EDT
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By John Tilak

TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian startup Influitive, a marketing-software provider, has raised $30.5 million in funding as it looks to finance growth and expand into Europe and Asia, its top executive said on Thursday.

Canadian and U.S. technology companies have been benefiting from a recent flood of venture capital-investments with investors rushing to buy stakes in promising startups as early as possible.

Companies use Influitive’s software platform to mobilize their most-valued customers - who they call advocates - by motivating them to refer others, to write reviews and to get the word out on social media. Influitive has about 250 corporate clients including Hootsuite, IBM (IBM.N: Quote), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ.N: Quote) and Dell.

"The challenge isn’t in identifying advocates. The challenge is in getting the full potential from them,” said Mark Organ, founder and chief executive of Toronto-based Influitive, who added that the company's latest funding was significantly oversubscribed.

Organ was the founder of software company Eloqua Inc, which was acquired by Oracle (ORCL.N: Quote) for about $871 million a few years ago.

The latest funding round was led by Georgian Partners, a Toronto-based venture capital firm that specializes in the software and data analytics markets. Georgian put in about half the funding.

“We feel advocacy marketing is going to be a huge market category,” said Simon Chong, managing partner at Georgian Partners, who will join the company’s board.

“(Influitive) lives by their own home cooking,” he added. “They use their advocacy platform to mobilize their customers.”   Continued...