Israeli Startup Lusha Achieves Unicorn Status With $205 Million Series B at $1.5 Billion Valuation
by Meir Orbach / CTech
CTech – Israeli startup Lusha announced on Wednesday that it has raised $205 million in Series B funding at a $1.5 billion valuation. Yoni Tserruya, CEO and co-founder of Lusha, confirmed to Calcalist that the round includes a significant secondary element, although stated that most of the funds will still enter the company’s coffers. This is Lusha’s second funding round after raising $40 million in a Series A in February following five years of being bootstrapped.
“We were still bootstrapped one year ago when we understood that we have a big opportunity to surge forward. We have since tripled our revenue growth rate and that is why we required another funding round faster than we thought,” Tserruya explained to Calcalist. “The next stage will be to go public. I’m not sure when that will be, but it will take at least two more years. We are seeing many companies that are going public too early and are facing difficulties in making projections and meeting expectations.”
PSG, a growth equity firm partnering with middle-market software and technology-enabled services companies, led the Series B after also leading the Series A. Additional investment was received by ION Crossover Partners, bringing total investment in the company to $245 million.
Lusha’s biggest rival is ZoomInfo, which has made several acquisitions of Israeli companies and has built up a large R&D center in the country. Lusha was founded by Tserruya together with Assaf Eisenstein in 2016 and it currently employs 200 people in its Tel Aviv and Boston offices. “We will end the year with 240 employees, 20 of them will be based in Boston,” said Tserruya.
Until recently, B2B sales and marketers were using a “spray and pray” approach, reaching a high volume of potential customers with low relevance. As a result, salespeople spend around 65% of their time on non-sales and administrative activities, rather than engaging potential customers. This costs time and money that could be otherwise spent on growing businesses. Lusha’s cloud-based platform provides sales professionals and teams access to enterprise-grade solutions, to identify their ideal target buyer, and gain data-driven insights on who they approach as a potential customer, when, and why.
“Lusha is a data company and we help organizations identify business opportunities that would be best for them and provide them with information on the potential client and the decision-makers at the company,” said Tserruya. “The challenge for salespeople in this day and age is that they spend only a third of their time selling, while two-thirds goes to identifying potential clients and collecting data. The more accurate data they have the more they can invest their time in actual sales.”
Lusha’s cloud-based platform facilitates salespeople sharing contact information and company insights, which validates Lusha’s data and ensures high accuracy. The company’s community approach and affordability also ensure that salespeople from organizations of all sizes have access to the data they need to optimize their sales outreach.
“Our primary goal is to give every salesperson, regardless of size or budget, access to the highest quality data at the most affordable price, while championing world-class standards of privacy and compliance,” said Assaf Eisenstein, co-founder and President of Lusha. “With this funding round, we will continue to invest highly in our data infrastructure and privacy standards to provide optimal levels of compliance and security for Lusha’s 800,000+ community members.”