Evernote confirmed its rumored massive funding round this morning, though it wasn’t the $100 million whopper early reports indicated. The digital note-taking company raised $70 million at a valuation of $1 billion in its fourth round of funding, led by Meritech Capital and CBC Capital.
“This financing brings us another small step closer to our long-term goal of building a hundred year startup that can be everyone’s second brain,” Evernote CEO Phil Libin wrote on the company blog today. He noted that the company didn’t really need the funding but it’s “a crucial component” of remaining an innovative and durable company.” And of course, it’s a helpful valuation bump as Evernote plans to go public.
Libin says the company will use the funding to increase product improvements, make future acquisitions, and expand internationally. Mostly though, it seems the money will help Evernote weather market conditions and remain focused on its product.
Evernote offers a suite of digital note-taking products with the goal of letting you remember everything. The core Evernote app lets you save pretty much anything — including text, pictures, and other files — to the cloud, which is then accessible from desktop and mobile devices. All of Evernote’s apps are free to use, but the company offers premium features at $5 per month (or $45 per year) rate that gives you larger upload capabilities, offline access, and more.
The company is close to reaching 30 million registered users, and more than 25 percent of them pay for the service today. Evernote acquired four small companies last year, including the image app Skitch, and launched a few standalone apps, like “Hello” and “Food.”
Always looking ahead, Libin says the future of Evernote is far beyond its current $1 billion valuation. “I agree with our very wise investors,” Libin told TechCrunch in an interview. “I think that Evernote as a publicly traded company could be worth $10 billion, $100 billion or more.”
While going public will certainly be a major new step for Evernote, Libin tells TechCrunch that he doesn’t want the company’s focus to change much. He wants Evernote to spend all of its energy making the product better, and he wants users to trust the company enough to use it for the rest of their lives.
Mountain View, Calif.-based Evernote has now raised around $166 million, including today’s funding. The company apparently still has much of its previous $96 million in funding left in the bank, according to TechCrunch. But it never hurts to have a $70 million safety net.