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Affinity, a relationship intelligence platform developed to work with current client relationship management (CRM) options, today announced that it closed an $80 million series C funding round led by Menlo Ventures, bringing its total raised to date to $120 million at a $600 million valuation. Advance Venture Partners, Sprints Capital, Pear Ventures, Sway Ventures, MassMutual Ventures, Teamworthy, and ECT also participated in the round, which cofounder and CEO Ray Zhou stated will be place toward strengthening Affinity’s engineering group and expanding its sales and marketing and advertising attain into sectors such as investment banking, private equity, and accounting.
CRM systems and networking platforms like LinkedIn have helped salespeople close offers for decades. But they can be challenging to handle, with some research obtaining that up to 70% of firm profiles and make contact with data are incomplete or out of date. According to one supply, 32% of sales representatives devote more than an hour every single day on manual information entry. Another survey discovered that 9% to 17% of corporations think about difficulties with client information integration and incorrect information their best challenges, as effectively as difficulty in tracking sales funnels.
Founded in 2014, Affinity aggregates client information developed by interactions and communications like e mail and calendar meetings, leveraging AI to analyze every single information point. The platform turns the evaluation into insights about skilled relationships, revealing who in an organization has the ideal likelihood of opening doors or closing offers.
“Most often, we’re competing with legacy, transactional CRMs, or homegrown contact and deal-tracking systems. We see a lot of Excel spreadsheets or legacy CRMs like DealCloud deployed but not used,” Zhou told VentureBeat through e mail. “A typical Affinity user has over 1,600 connections, and we’ve mapped more than 48 million relationships overall. This connection data … drives both our relationship graph and the relationship scores that provide the ‘warm’ introductions that deliver deals. Dealmakers in private capital and services typically have lots of connections, creating a network effect that further increases use of our platform.”
Zhou says that the pandemic placed a higher emphasis on relationship developing and intelligence for Affinity’s prospects, who had to work tougher to develop their networks and engage the appropriate founders or CEO. As face-to-face meetings became logistically not possible, the platform helped to update make contact with records and track activity, enhancing firm profiles with data like income, employees size, and funding.
Affinity claims to have analyzed more than 18 trillion emails and 213 million calendar events to develop its relationship intelligence graph. Its platform presently powers more than 500,000 new introductions and tracks 450,000 offers per month, scoring the strength of relationships applying algorithms that assess variables such as communication frequency, recency, cadence, and response time.
“We saw substantial growth in usage of the platform [during the pandemic] from existing clients as well as growth in industries like investment banking as they adapted and accelerated their digital transformation efforts,” Zhou stated. “Affinity has quickly become the go-to relationship-management tool for VCs and private-equity firms.”
To Zhou’s point, Affinity’s more than 1,700 prospects involve Bain Capital Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, SoftBank Group, investment bankers such as Woodside Capital Partners, and monetary services firms such as Fidelity Investments. Tishman Speyer, American Family Insurance, Nike, Qualcomm, and Twilio are amongst other noteworthy paying enterprises.
“Affinity brings the power of relationship intelligence into sharp focus, giving teams the data and context to close business,” Tyler Sosin, companion at Menlo Ventures, stated in a statement. “At Menlo, we started as a customer of Affinity only to quickly learn we could not live without it. As investors, it dawned on us that Affinity is tackling a universal problem faced by a wide swath of industries. That’s when we knew we had to chase these guys down and invest. It helped that we were tracking Affinity … in Affinity.”
In the close to term, Affinity plans to develop its 125-particular person employees to 200 by next year.