Palisade closes $1.5 million CAD, launches email deliverability score tool

Startup aims to get emails to more inboxes, fewer spam folders.

Montréal-based email startup Palisade has closed $1.5 million CAD in pre-seed financing as it publicly launches its email deliverability product.

The pre-seed funding round, Palisade’s first external fundraise, was led by Boreal Ventures, with participation from individual investors Marc-André Campagna, Vincent Thibault, Jason Dacosta, Alexi Roy, Philip Barclay, François Robitaille, and Yanis Mellata, among others.

“[Email] infrastructure is still configured manually like in the 90s. We are here to change that.” 

Founded in 2023, Palisade is looking to tackle email deliverability for companies with email lists. Email deliverability refers to the rate at which emails successfully make it to recipients’ inboxes. This rate can be lower if an email bounces back or is filtered into a spam folder, which Palisade said can lead to revenue loss.

In a statement, Palisade claimed that despite over 300 billion emails being sent per day, over 97 percent of domains lack the proper infrastructure to maximize deliverability.

The initial iteration of Palisade’s software automates three core functionalities. The first is automating email domain name system (DNS) configuration, which involves setting up and managing the rules and records that guide how emails are routed across the internet.

The platform also focuses on deliverability monitoring, which allows companies to track and analyze whether their emails are successfully reaching their intended recipients. This week, the startup launched a tool that allows companies to check their email deliverability score.

In a statement, Palisade co-founder and CEO of Palisade Samuel Chenard likened this to a credit score, whereby customers will receive a score each week to ensure email sendouts are functioning properly. If that score is impacted, customers will receive an alert, and Palisade will either fix the issue or issue recommendations to the customer.

Palisade’s platform will also help companies ensure emails are compliant with various fraud prevention standards, including the Brand Indicators for Message Identification (BIMI) protocol, which allows companies to put their logo in their emails in a way that email services like Gmail or Outlook can recognize. 

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“With the adoption of the BIMI protocol and the new requirements by Google, Apple, Yahoo, and many other [email service providers] coming up in February, we felt there would be more need and more complexity for email infrastructure compliance,” Chenard said. 

“[Email] infrastructure is still configured manually like in the 90s,” he added. “We are here to change that.” 

Prior to founding Palisade, Chenard was most recently co-founder and CTO at CareerUp, an internship placement platform. While managing a multi-million subscriber email list at his former company, he conceived of a tool that could automate email DNS configuration and monitoring.

“During their tenure at CareerUp, Samuel and his team have demonstrated a rare ability to build successful, capital-efficient ventures in intricate markets,” David Charbonneau, managing partner at Boreal Ventures, said in a statement. “Samuel’s prior experience as CTO gave him firsthand understanding of the frustrations caused by the ever-changing email backend architecture.”

Palisade claims to have multiple paying customers using its beta product and is working with media outlets, content creators, Series A startups, enterprise companies, and other companies. The startup has set a goal to reach $1 million in annual recurring revenue by the end of 2024.

With the fresh funding, the startup plans to grow its currently four-person team, and deploy what Chenard described to BetaKit as “aggressive marketing and acquisitions strategies.”

Feature image courtesy Palisade.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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