LEHI — Podium, one of Utah's fastest-growing tech companies, isn't taking its foot off the gas and this week announced a fresh cash infusion of $60 million that will help fund continued expansion.
The company, founded in 2014, is a platform for offline businesses to manage and maintain digital communications with customers as well as keep an eye on their online reputations and reviews. Over 20,000 businesses are now using the system, which handles over 4 million customer interactions every month.
Just 3 ½ years ago, Podium was housed in a spare bedroom of co-founder and CEO Eric Rea's apartment. Just over two years ago, Podium graduated to a space above a Provo bike shop — without heat or air conditioning — and had a staff of 15.
Now, including the new funding, the company has drawn over $90 million in venture investment, is getting ready to move into a new, $10 million Utah headquarters, is on track to hire over 400 new employees in the next five years and has earned a $1.1 million tax credit from the Governor's Office of Economic Development for the $124.7 million they'll be paying out in wages over that time.
“This investment is a validation to both our mission to serve local businesses as well as the ecosystem in which we founded this company,” said Rea.
“Podium has been experiencing growth that, I believe, is directly tied to our decision to start our business here in Utah. We are excited about the possibilities that are now available with this investment and look forward to continue to grow here in Silicon Slopes.”
The company has drawn the attention of a slew of heavy-hitting venture capital firms and this latest Series B round was led by Silicon Valley's Institutional Venture Partners, with participation from GV (formerly Google Ventures), Accel, Summit Partners and Y Combinator.
In a statement, IVP general manager Sandy Miller highlighted how Podium and its customer-centric platform is distinguishing itself in the tech marketplace.
"Podium has become one of the most promising tools a local business could use," Miller said. "This market is absolutely immense. By addressing an overlooked area where local businesses and services have been woefully underserved, Podium's technology allows for these companies to easily adapt and conveniently communicate with their customers."
Besides riding an arc of ongoing business growth and success, Podium also recently earned a place on Inc. magazine's Best Workplaces for 2018.
Rea said Podium applies the same concern it embraces in helping businesses build better relationships with its customers as it does with the company's employees.2 comments on this story
“We’ve worked hard to build a culture for our team members that makes them proud to work at Podium,” Rea said. “We provide a platform for our clients that builds positive engagements and creates stronger relationships with their customers, and we do our best to mirror that approach within our company.
"We’re humbled to have Inc. magazine’s recognition as one of the best workplaces of 2018, and we look forward to continuing the journey with our talented and dedicated employees.”