Target + Techstars portfolio company’s employee self-service platform experiencing rapid worldwide adoption
MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–August 2, 2017–
Branch Messenger, Inc. (Branch), the employee self-service platform that offers enterprises unprecedented access to their frontline workers at scale while also empowering hourly shift workers to manage their work lives in real-time, today announced the closing of more than $10 million in funding. The funding includes a recently closed $6.8 million Series A funding round. March Capital Partners led the round with participation from CrossCut, Techstars Ventures, Matchstick Ventures, and other investors. Branch will use the funds to rapidly build its team to drive enterprise partnerships and to expand the base of shift workers worldwide who are already experiencing the benefits of its platform, which is currently being tested at more than 100 Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) stores, distribution centers, and call centers across the country. Branch is free for employees and available as a mobile first application for iOS and Android users.
By bridging the communication gap between hourly shift workers and the companies that employ them, Branch has experienced tremendous global growth in the last six months. Tens of thousands of hourly shift workers use the Branch app daily to control their schedules by easily swapping and picking up shifts, automatically transform paper schedules into digital calendars, and create workplace-specific messaging channels. Workers who use Branch can cover or pick up shifts within minutes as opposed to hours or days. Using Branch at a broad spectrum of companies, including Target, McDonald’s, and Walgreens, employees who have downloaded the company’s free app posted more than 2.5 million hours in available shifts on Branch over the last 12 months.
“Branch was one of 10 inaugural companies to go through Target’s first retail accelerator,” said Pam Tomczik, vice president corporate development, Target Corporation. “The goal of the Target + Techstars Retail Accelerator is to help startups bring new products and experiences to retail. Branch was selected out of more than 550 companies spanning 45 countries because they brought a unique product that addressed a clear business need. We’re thrilled they’re continuing to grow.”
Hundreds of leading enterprises across numerous industries, including FORTUNE 500 companies, are also now using Branch to quickly tap into an elastic on-demand workforce and extend the value of existing workforce management systems without the need for switching costs. In addition, Branch’s technology provides a seamless way to significantly reduce employee absenteeism, payroll costs, and management time. Its extensible architecture also enables an enterprise to deploy the platform across its entire organization regardless of size within days as opposed to months.
“Branch’s ability to not only quickly create massive demand for its platform at the employee level but also partner with the companies where employees use the technology is incredibly impressive,” said Jim Armstrong, managing director, March Capital Partners. “March Capital aligns with companies that provide essential services to businesses, and we believe Branch is poised to transform communications between shift workers and enterprises everywhere. We’re excited to partner with the company as it continues to grow.”
“We’ve seen the way technology can benefit retail in our various portfolio companies and we believe Branch can have a huge impact not only on retail enterprises, but also on those in other verticals as well,” said Brett Brewer, co-founder and managing director, CrossCut. “The company’s phenomenal growth to date indicates that it will become an indispensable part of employee/employer communications. In addition to our investment, we’re also keen to leverage our relationships to help Branch expand its reach.”
“Branch exists to give unparalleled freedom and flexibility to shift workers and to enable enterprises to communicate with those workers in ways never before possible, and we’re gratified to have the support of such exceptional investors who share our vision,” said Atif Siddiqi, founder and chief executive officer, Branch Messenger. “This funding will allow us to quickly accelerate the growth of the team as we work to bring Branch to new users around the world.”
About Branch Messenger
Branch Messenger is the employee self-service platform that offers enterprises unprecedented access to their frontline workers at scale while also empowering hourly shift workers to manage their work lives in real-time. Created at leading technology incubator Idealab, Branch is a Target + Techstars portfolio company headquartered in Minneapolis with an office in Los Angeles.
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Adrianne Ho, 310.472.0896