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Kerauno, an Indianapolis-based startup developing a cloud-hosted workflow communications platform, today announced that it has raised $25 million in a series A round led by The Joan Hanley (Steinbrenner) Trust, Andretti Autosport chairman and CEO Michael Andretti, and other unnamed institutional investors. The proceeds from the raise  — which the company claims is one of the largest in Indiana history — will be put toward future acquisitions and expansion of its workforce, CEO and cofounder Josh Ross said.

“This historic funding is a testament to the Kerauno brand and the faith that others have in the work we’re doing,” he said. “Our platform is all about improving interactions and engagements of customers and employees while driving more productive communications on any device, anytime, anywhere.  Our software has already proven it deepens relationships and increases revenue for our customers.”

Kerauno — which has attracted clients like Andretti Autosport, Ace Rent a Car, Jackson Hewitt, and Meineke and notched annual recurring revenue of $4.5 million, and which expects to create more than 100 jobs and invest $5.2 million in infrastructure by 2022 — offers a software-as-a-service solution that manages and analyzes inbound text messages, chat, email, and social media communications, as well as phone calls. It’s built on the back of a “geo-redundant” mesh of nodes and enterprise cloud hosts like Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services, and is fully compliant with standards like the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA), Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA), and PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).

So how’s it work? Team members tap a customizable dashboard that integrates with third-party software platforms like Salesforce and Jira and bubbles up key functions and shortcuts to the surface. According to COO Don Scifres, though, the truly novel thing about Kerauno is its flexibility. With webhooks, it’s able to connect to almost all CRMs, LMSs, and billing systems, and after a forthcoming update, it’ll be able to overlay atop virtually any communications system, device, software, or endpoint. The sky’s the limit, according to Scifres: A municipality could use it to communicate with constituents about construction projects, while a university could build a workflow that incorporates instant messaging, departmental chat, and custom alerts.


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Above: The Kerauno dashboard.

Image Credit: Kerauno

In call center scenarios, Kerauno’s built-in call control component enables agents to see who’s available to take calls and surface key details about the customers they’re servicing, including their names and phone numbers. (A nifty note-taking tool automatically attaches notes with a link to the call recording on the contact record.) Meanwhile, an analytics engine keeps tabs of things like transfers, call duration and volumes, and average hold times, all while exposing metrics like where and when errors occurred.

“We’ve been very strategic as we build our company and develop our products,” Scifres said. “It rarely happens that a solution intersects with the market at precisely the correct time. We have that opportunity and we have secured the first of several waves of capital that provides the Kerauno engine the fuel needed to lead the global communications market.”

Kerauno, which spun off from IT managed service company Axia Technology Partners in 2013, currently employs 50 people — quadruple the size of its staff less than 12 months ago.

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