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The market may be down right now, causing investors to be pickier about their investments, but that doesn't mean ever startup is going to be affected. In the best of times, most companies will be able to get some funding. In the worst of times, though, only the very best will get the big rounds.
Slack may be a young company, but it has long ago proven itself to be one of the premiere startups. So it just raised a big new $200 million funding round, the company has confirmed to VatorNews.
The round was led by Thrive Capital with participation by GGV, Comcast Ventures, and Slack’s existing investors, including major new investments by Accel, Social Capital, Spark Growth and Index Ventures.
What's most impressive is that this is an up round for the company, even as down round have become more prevalent, as later stage investors have begun to devalue their investments. The company last raised a $160 million round in April of 2015, which valued it at $2.8 billion. This new funding give it a valuation of $3.8 billion. Last month it was reported that the company was looking to raise between $150 and $300 million at a $4 billion valuation.
With this round, Slack has now raised around $540 million in venture funding.
The company, which burst onto the scene in 2014, when it raised $120 million and became a unicorn at only eight months old, Slack has been growing quickly.
The company had 2.3 million daily active users in February, and 675,000 paid seats. Just over a month later is now has 2.7 million DAUs, an increase of 17 percent, and 800,000 paid users, an increase of 18.5 percent.
Slack's new fundraising is all the more impressive given how down the venture capital market was in the first quarter of 2016.
There were 2,685 deals in Q1, down 38 percent from the same quarter in 2015, and down 18.5 percent quarter-to-quarter. The number of dollars actually increased 13 percent from Q4 2015, but was still down 6 percent from Q1 2015.
There's no indication of what the company will be doing with this funding, but it did recently begin a big marketing push, with its first TV ads at the tail end of last year.
Slack has some impending competition, with wide release of Facebook at Work, which will reportedly be available to all companies starting this year.
This will come around a year after Facebook at Work was first released, in pilot mode, in January of 2015. Since then it has been invite only, and roughly 300 enterprise clients signed up, including Heineken, Stella and Dot, and Century 21.
Another $200 million in the bank will certainly help Slack stave off some of that competition.
“As has always been the case, we are taking this opportunity to further secure our leadership position as we continue to execute on our ambitious growth plans. This capital adds to our existing reserves and increases our ability to focus on an uncompromising long-term, strategic view," Stewart Butterfield, CEO and co-founder of Slack, said in a statement provided to VatorNews.
(Image source: daily.photos.by.matt.haughey.taken.witha.camera)
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