Business-to-business (B2B) companies are generating an increasing percentage of their revenue through partner ecosystems. In a 2018 Accenture survey, 76% of business leaders said current business models will be unrecognizable in the next five years, with ecosystems being the main driver of change. But despite their growing importance, companies haven’t necessarily used technology to foster partnerships, relying instead on spreadsheets and lengthy virtual or face-to-face meetings.
Perhaps as a result, business ecosystems — while profitable — have a high failure rate. Research by BCG found that less than 15% was sustainable in the long run. But it doesn’t have to be that way. That’s according to Reveal CEO Simon Bouchez, who wants to build a platform with Gautier Machelon, Perrine El Khoury and Alex Sadones that will help B2B companies more easily identify sales opportunities with their partners.
With clients such as Qualtrics, Tealium, Contentsquare and Vonage. Reveal announced today that it has raised $50 million in a Series A round led by Insight Partners with participation from Eight Roads, Chalfen Ventures and Dig Ventures. The capital brings the startup’s total to approximately $54 million.
“Organizations create 2x more value when they sell to a partner customer,” Bouchez told TechCrunch via email. “But most of the time, companies don’t know how to capture this value and don’t invest in partnerships. Partnership leaders still have no clear place at the revenue table.”
Before launching Reveal in 2020, Bouchez was the CEO of Multiposting, an HR tech startup, until 2018, when it was acquired by SAP. Sadones was the CTO at Multiposting, while Gautier co-founded Work4, the employee sourcing and recruiting platform. Khoury was director of business development at Work4.
Initially, Reveal, which was founded as Sharework, focused on automatic sales account mapping, ie the process of cataloging the people who work at a particular target account. But in 2020, the startup started broadening its product strategy, targeting marketers looking to create and convert sales leads.
Some might argue that Reveal’s product falls into the category of ecosystem management, or tools to navigate and manage B2B partner ecosystems. But Bouchez argues that Reveal takes it a step further by involving sales and marketing teams in the lead generation, sales promotion and ecosystem expansion process.
“We believe we have created a new category: a collaborative growth platform that allows companies to use their ecosystem to accelerate growth,” said Bouchez. “Our closest competitor would be an Excel spreadsheet or companies that haven’t yet tapped into this growth potential. Of course, we expect competitors as our space grows and attracts investment from top investors, and many companies – such as Partnerstack, Crossbeam and Workspan – are growing rapidly.”
Reveal ingests data from existing customer relationship management systems to identify common sales accounts and potential new leads. Algorithms try to identify key partners that can be added to a company’s ecosystem, even if the company is not directly connected to them.
Within the platform, ecosystems are composed of partners in the same industry, targeting the same customer segment or selling a complementary product. The idea is that through Reveal, companies can connect with a partner’s account owners to get to know key decision-makers.
Throughout the process, using proprietary methods (Bouchez declined to go into detail), Reveal attempts to quantify the ecosystem’s impact on a company’s overall sales pipeline and revenue.
“Reveal…allows partnership professionals to quickly identify common customers and prospects with partners to drive more business opportunities,” said Bouchez. “Users” [can] discover new relevant partners in the Reveal network.”
Reveal claims its algorithms — which process more than 200 million customer relationship management records from the company’s more than 4,500 customers — are accurate, but it hasn’t conducted any outside testing to verify this. Reveal is more transparent about its data collection and retention policies and claims not to store personally identifiable information and delete customer relationship management data “once the user requests it”.
“Security and compliance have been a top priority from day one to enable our users to entrust us with sensitive and important data in complete confidence,” said Bouchez.
Reveal’s future plans include tripling its workforce from 40 employees (within the next 18 months), investing in product development, and expanding its online learning hub for collaboration professionals. In the long run, Bouchez hopes to build the largest network of “connected companies,” with the tentative goal of eclipsing 20,000 companies by the end of 2023.
“Reveal is quickly becoming a leader in collaborative growth, an emerging category that integrates into a company’s customer relationship management system and serves as a bridge to partners’ customer relationship management systems,” said Brad Fielder of Insight Partners, who plans to add join the board of Reveal. TechCrunch in a statement. “Reveal empowers sales teams to identify new opportunities and leverage partner connections to close deals like never before.”
This post Reveal raises $50 million to embrace the benefits of partner ecosystems – TechCrunch was original published at “https://techcrunch.com/2022/04/27/2306524/”