BetterCloud, founded in 2011, provides IT departments in a wide range of industries with lifecycle, data discovery, and security automation tools for cloud office platforms, such as Google Apps and Microsoft Office 365. The company’s solution includes three main products: BetterCloud for Google Apps, BetterCloud for Office 365, and The BetterCloud Monitor. BetterCloud has two offices in the United States, located in New York and Atlanta.
Zirra Rated BetterCloud
Business & Marketing Strategy: BetterCloud was one of the first companies to join the cloud office market, which enabled them to secure a faithful user base before the industry became as crowded as it currently is. This enabled them to become one of the main companies in a rapidly growing market, having over 50,000 customers and 200 partners all over the world, and being considered one of the best solutions on the two major cloud office platforms: Google for Work and Office 365. In order to maintain this privileged position BetterCloud needs to keep developing their technology and stay ahead of competitors, which is why they are investing most of the $25M raised in their first Series D round in further development of the product and bringing 120 new employees to their Atlanta R&D hub. The company seems to be acquiring their customers through direct sales operations rather than marketing activities, since only 4% of their listed workforce is dedicated to the latter.
Competitive Position: BetterCloud has identified Cloudlock (now part of Cisco) as their most direct competitor, and their website includes a section that compares both solution and shows testimonials of customers who stopped using Cloudlock once they discovered BetterCloud. Founded in 2007, Cloudlock has managed to build a large enterprise user base that includes renowned companies such as HBO, BBVA, Dia, DreamWorks Studios, Motorola, U.S. Army, The Guardian, and many more; while BetterCloud customers appear to be smaller companies with a less notable global presence. In terms of workforce, both companies seem to follow a similar pattern, listing a close number of employees (147 for Cloudlock and 132 for BetterCloud) and dedicating most of their workforce to R&D and sales tasks in almost identical percentages (35% vs 33% for R&D and 25% vs 15% for sales). Other competitors, as pointed out by customers, include: Do.com by Salesforce, Run My Process, Backupify, and Knowledge Vault.
Market Forecast & Exit Indicators: According to Gartner, the global public-cloud market sales will reach $204 billion in 2016, an increase of 16.5% from the previous year. This numbers will continue to grow in the next years, as its predicted that businesses will spend six times more on public-cloud services over the next three years, with 64% of all companies with over 5,000 employees will run entirely in the cloud by 2026, up from close to zero nowadays. The most significant exit indicator is Cloudlock’s acquisition by Cisco for $293M in June 2016, as the company is considered a close competitor of BetterCloud and was in a similar development stage at the time of its exit.
HR Situation and Reviews: The company lists 132 employees on their LinkedIn page, showing an increase of 46% in their employee count within the last two years, with an average tenure of 2 years. Almost half of their workforce is dedicated to R&D and sales tasks, with 33% and 15% of all listed employees respectively. BetterCloud appears to be content with their current DNA, and their employee distribution across departments has barely changed in the last 24 months. The most noticeable changes are a 2 and 3 percentage point increase in IT and product management, and a 3 and 2 pp drop in sales and marketing. The company’s website currently lists 8 open positions across R&D, sales, support, and customer success departments. There are 35 employee reviews on Glasdoor, showing and overall positive image of the company with a 3.9/5 rating. 72% of the employees would recommend BetterCloud to a friend, while 80% approve of CEO.
Investors Positions: BetterCloud has received slightly over $47M from at least 12 investors in six rounds. This long list of backers includes renowned names such as Accel Partners, Greycroft Partners, e.ventures, and Flybridge Capital Partners. With over a thousand investments in more than 300 companies, Accel is the biggest firm supporting BetterCloud. The company manages over $19.5B in assets, and has made notable investments in Facebook, Slack, Dropbox, Spotify, Etsy, and Cloudera, among others. Greycroft has backed over 175 companies through more than 280 investments, including big exits such as Marker Studios (acquired by Disney) and Trunk Club (acquired by Nordstrom. E.ventures has invested more than $550M in over 100 companies, including Fotolog (acquired by HiMedia), Pulse (acquired by LinkedIn), BlueKai (acquired by Oracle), and Citydeal (acquired by Groupon). Flybridge has made over 150 investments in a long list of successful companies inclusing BzzAgent (acquired by Tesco), Codecademy, Crashlytics (acquired by Twitter), Firebase (acquired by Google), and ZING (acquired by Dell).