Mikkel Svane, CEO of help desk ticketing provider Zendesk, said that his company’s most recent round of funding worth $19 million might be its last.
Zendesk is part of a batch of fresh collaboration and enterprise startups that have seen some explosive growth in recent years. Along with Huddle, Yammer and some other startups, Zendesk has seen a lot of interest with its on-demand help desk services. With that much momentum, it makes enough sense that the company is going to go as far as possible — which could involve going public, though that’s a completely different beast, Svane said.
“This most recent round of funding has all the characteristics of being the last round of funding,” Svane said. “We want to push this company as far as we can — we believe we have fantastic momentum here.”
The whole generation of enterprise startups has seen some significant rounds of funding as well. Zendesk has hired about 50 people in the past year or so, and has seen an incredible amount of growth. That’s on top of two earlier rounds of funding, the second of which was worth $6 million. Yammer, another startup in that generation, recently announced a funding round worth a whopping $25 million. Huddle raised an extra $10.2 million in its second round of funding earlier this year in May.
It’s another indication of the newest startups bringing typical consumer-facing strategies to the enterprise. Yammer brought the lessons Facebook taught startups to the enterprise space with its business social network. Zendesk, like Yammer, brought lessons from the consumer space by letting customer help desks communicate with customers anywhere at any time, using a large number of tools like e-mail and Twitter.
“The whole notion of customers and companies is completely changing, we’re all customers,” Svane said. “All our tactics are consumerish — the traditional B2B is quietly dying out.
Svane wouldn’t give any indication of what kind of valuation the company had in its most recent round of funding, but said he was “very humbled at the size of the round.” He said the company was a bit oversubscribed and, like other fresh startups in the area, had the luxury of being a bit picky in what investors the company chose.
“We can’t say yes to everybody,” he said. “There can be only one, and that was actually the hardest part.”
If that weren’t any kind of indication of how much influence the consumer space has on Zendesk’s enterprise strategies, the company has enlisted the likes of Cory Doctorow for a series of holiday videos ranging from creative commons musicals to parodies of TED talks.
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