Logojoy raises $900,000 seed round to stay ahead of design automation space

Dawson Whitfield, co-founder and CEO of Looka.

Logojoy has raised an $900,000 seed round in its first-ever round of financing.

Launched by former Weebly UX designer Dawson Whitfield, Logojoy’s platform is targeted to small businesses, and allows founders to input their company name, while a machine does the work of outputting several designs to choose from. Working in the space for the past 12 years, Whitfield was inspired to launch Logojoy after a particularly negative experience last summer, when he worked with a client on a logo for several weeks and they weren’t happy with the final result.

“We see ourselves in front of this huge open space, and that is really automating design,” said Whitfield. “I like to really value my time and pride myself in bringing value to my clients, and I really felt kind of useless and I was just getting in the way. And it sucked.”

Since launching six months ago, Logojoy has generated two million logos.

The funding was led by a collective group of investors, including Corey Hawtin, TWG and Caravan Ventures lead investor Dominic Bortolussi, SurePath Capital’s Mark MacLeod, B12 Labs founder Nitesh Banta, Naturebox founder Gautam Gupta, 500 Startups, Azim Lakhoo, TechTO founder Alex Norman, and an unnamed strategic investor.

“There are companies who are moving to this new design paradigm that is moving away from templates, and moving into the approach that more closely mimics working with a designer,” said Whitfield. “We’re using [the funding] to hire to keep our place as the market leader when it comes to logo design, and to bring Logojoy to the world.”

The company plans to use the funding to invest in company growth in two ways: expanding its product to include brand identity and business card design services, and growing the Logojoy team from 15 to 40 members by the end of 2017.

“The most iconic brands have owned their colours, fonts, and layouts as sub-conscience triggers people can immediately identify with,” said Rares Crisan, head of technology for Logojoy. “There is a reason people can recognize the Facebook’s “F” in blue, without seeing its full name. Making a logo is the first challenge in helping people introduce their brand. Finding a way to help them define it is how the technology needs to grow. It has been great seeing how Logojoy has been received by the public so far, but there are clearly more exciting challenges ahead.”

Rares Crisan, Logojoy’s head of technology

Since launching six months ago, Logojoy has generated two million logos, sold over 11,000 logos, and gained 550,000 active users. The company’s team has grown to 15 members. Whitfield said that while the company is profitable, the raise will enable it to grow the team with extra money in the bank.

“Why I love Logojoy is that it’s got this rapid growth to a very simple problem that it’s solving — creating brand identities for small businesses and entrepreneurs, who can’t yet afford to pay for designers or design agency,” said Bortolussi. “There’s a huge market out there of people who want to be able to create.”

Like all industries being impacted by AI, Whitfield is no stranger to criticism that Logojoy is devaluing the work of designers. However, he draws a parallel to the rise of website builders; he says that while people were initially were concerned that templates were taking away the jobs of website builders, today, these same builders now have the time to do higher-quality custom work they enjoy.

“Our stance is that you really just have to look at what the customer wants,” said Whitfield. “They’ll have to continue to evolve and to improve their skills and better communicate them and communicate the rationale for hiring them versus trying to do it yourself. I also think that this is a healthy thing. It happens in every industry, but I think it’s a healthy thing for companies to continue to push everyone else in the other company to improve their offering.”

Jessica Galang

Jessica Galang

Freelance tech writer. Former BetaKit News Editor.

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