The enterprise communication company Switch Communications today announced a new $35 million round of funding, which it will use for an expansion into Asian markets.
Amasia structured and led the round, which included Felicis Ventures, SoftBank, and Work-Bench Ventures. Previous investors Andreessen Horowitz and Google Ventures also participated.
“At Amasia, given our focus on investing in cross-border businesses, we saw a great fit with Switch as our investors include regional telecommunications providers and influential international business owners that can greatly expand the company’s global reach,” said John Kim, managing partner at Amasia.
San Francisco-based Switch offers two services: a phone conferencing app called UberConference (you’ve probably heard its hit song, “I’m On Hold“) and a cloud-based voice communication platform for the enterprise called Switch.
“We’ve had extraordinary interest from large enterprises (just signed a Fortune 500 last week that deploys this summer) and, as you can imagine, they have a global footprint,” said Jeanne DeWitt, chief revenue officer at Switch Communications.
“We are focused first and foremost on expanding our global footprint to meet the strong demand in U.S. enterprises with multi-locations globally and having a tier one partner such as Amasia has been proving to be immensely helpful in this respect,” DeWitt said.
Switch connects mobile workers to their company’s phone system from any device (desk phone, mobile phone, laptop, etc.), allowing them to control their calls with the app. Using it, they can record and transfer calls, and switch between voice and SMS or chat.
Switch is deeply integrated with Google Apps. Switch founder and CEO Craig Walker told VentureBeat last year that while Microsoft can offer a full stack of communications and productivity tools, including voice (with its Lync product), Google has everything … except the voice part. It’s the one question Google’s enterprise salesforce can’t answer when going head-to-head with Microsoft to compete for enterprise business, Walker said then.
Walker has been around the block a few times in the Internet voice business. He sold his first startup, Dialpad, which made one of the first Voice-over-IP (VoiP) services, to Yahoo in 2005. After leaving Yahoo, he launched a new service called Grand Central, which later contributed much of the brains of Google Voice after the search giant purchased it in 2007.
Transparency Market Research valued the unified communications market at $22.8 billion in 2011 and expects it to reach $61.9 billion in 2018.