Toronto-based B2B software startup Loopio has secured a $252 million CAD ($200 million USD) strategic investment from Sumeru Equity Partners (SEP) and Affiliates.
Loopio plans to use the fresh funding to accelerate its product development, customer acquisition, and hiring, as the company banks on continued request for proposal (RFP) software market growth.
“Despite the uncertainties of last year, the RFP software market continued to grow at a rapid-fire pace,” wrote Zak Hemraj, Loopio’s CEO and co-founder.
SEP is a growth-focused tech investment firm that funds enterprise tech companies. Loopio isn’t the only Canadian software startup SEP has recently funded: the California-based firm led a $126 million CAD ($100 million USD) investment in Vancouver’s Tasktop, which was also announced today.
“Despite the uncertainties of last year, the RFP software market continued to grow at a rapid-fire pace—especially in a remote world, where collaboration and communication are top priorities for every company,” wrote Zak Hemraj, Loopio’s CEO and co-founder, in a blog post announcing the raise. “To keep up with the demand for solutions like Loopio, we felt it was the right time to hit the ‘accelerate’ button on our product development and market expansion.”
Founded in 2014, Loopio provides RFP response software to companies in a variety of industries, including healthcare, financial services, and telecommunications. Targeted to businesses, Loopio’s platform streamlines responses to RFPs, requests for information, and due diligence questionnaires, helping firms “improve sales efficiency and unlock growth opportunities.” The startup currently has over 1,000 clients, including DocuSign, Siemens, and McGraw Hill.
Hemraj said that the new investment follows “Loopio’s remarkable growth over the past few years,” which he said “wouldn’t have been possible without the incredible work of our talented team and passionate customers.”
The raise comes nearly a year after the startup laid off 11 members of its staff, which then represented eight percent of the company. These layoffs affected employees in sales, marketing, software development, and people operations.
In an interview with BetaKit last year, Hemraj attributed these layoffs to the economic downturn caused by COVID-19. At the time, the CEO said Loopio was seeing “levels of scrutiny from buyers in all industries” that it hadn’t seen “in the last decade,” adding that “when it comes to purchasing new software, conversations generally have slowed down.” As a result, Loopio temporarily scaled back its go-to-market strategy.
In addition to the SEP investment, the startup has raised only one other round of external financing. Loopio was bootstrapped until 2018, when it raised $11 million CAD from OpenView: Hemraj called this a testament to the “resiliency” of the company’s business pre-pandemic.
According to Loopio, its new partnership with SEP will help the startup to develop its RFP response technology and “better support sales and proposal teams worldwide.”
The startup plans to use the fresh funding to grow its sales and customer experience teams. By the end of 2021, Loopio aims to expand its employee base from 165 to more than 200. The company intends to hire both “in the areas surrounding” its Toronto headquarters, and in regions across North America.
Photo of Loopio’s co-founders, Matt York, Jafar Owainati and Zak Hemraj, courtesy of Loopio