How a Sydney tech startup scored a $266 million venture capital investment


Sydney-based Campaign Monitor secured a US$250 million ($266 million) investment by venture capital firm Insight Venture Partners yesterday.


The email marketing company started in 2004 and now has 65 employees across 19 cities with more than 100,000 paying customers.


Friends since they were toddlers, co-founders David Greiner and Ben Richardson started Campaign Monitor in their final year of university in Wollongong and now the business sends 1 billion emails a month.


“There was no great formula,” Greiner told SmartCompany back in 2007. “We had to make sure it was something people need and was worth paying for. Then it would sell itself.”


Campaign Monitor has been profitable since day one allowing Greiner and Richardson to self-fund the business up until now.


Insight’s investment represents Campaign Monitor’s first ever funding and follows sales growth of “solid double digits” annually for the last decade.


Deven Parekh, managing director at Insight, said the VC firm was attracted by Campaign Monitor’s profitability since launch and market leading position.


“Insight’s investment will help the company capitalise on the global demand for their solutions and build a global team to serve customers in all markets,” he said in a statement.


Writing on Campaign Monitor’s blog Greiner described Insight as “one of the most experienced tech investors in the world” and said Campaign Monitor has had a “five-year relationship” with the VC firm.


Greiner said the funding will “help make the next 10 years even more amazing than the last” and will be used for product innovation and accelerated global expansion.


“Times like these force you to look back to where it all started. It honestly feels like yesterday that Ben and I were running our own small design agency out of a spare room, building websites and managing email campaigns for our clients,” he said.


“As an agency with fairly unique needs, it wasn’t long before we grew frustrated with the tools available to manage these campaigns, and eventually decided the only way to solve it was to build our own.  It’s funny how small decisions like that can have such a big impact on your life.”


Greiner says the pair are “incredibly proud” of what he describes as Campaign Monitor’s “bootstrapping heritage”.


“Being focused on running a profitable business from day one has given us the freedom to do things our own way, even if that’s in a completely different direction to most of our competitors,” Greiner says.


“We’ve grown into the business we are today by focusing on what matters: building software that people love to use and making sure our customers have an amazing experience doing business with us.”


Greiner and Richardson will continue to lead Campaign Monitor and Insight’s managing directors Deven Parekh and Nikitas Koutoupes, and associate Dan May, will join Campaign Monitor’s board.


This article first appeared on SmartCompany.