Connectbase recently announced that it has raised $21 million in its Series C funding round, led by DigitalBridge. The company secured the new equity investment to drive growth fueled by the insatiable appetite for bandwidth across the globe. Connectbase’s total funding to date is $48 million in equity.
In this Q&A, Connectbase CEO & Founder Ben Edmond discusses the company’s latest funding round and his vision for the company’s future…but first, a bit of context.
What inspired you to start Connectbase?
Ben: What inspired me was really the experience of 20 years in the industry as an operator. I was always trying to look for ways to grow, get a competitive advantage to deliver the right customer experience, and always coming back to some key themes that the industry lacked. The existing connectivity buy/sell tools and processes lacked the perspective of location. There was friction at every step. Just living through that, I knew I could and wanted to solve the problem on a bigger, global scale.
Buying and selling network connectivity has been a slow, manual and labor-intensive process for far too long, impacting the customer experience, profitability and growth of the market. With decades of first-hand experience in the industry, we launched Connectbase to solve that pain point by bringing together automation, location intelligence and an ever-expanding connected ecosystem. We exist to help service providers execute the right deals, with confidence, faster than ever.
What’s the number one issue facing the industry right now?
B: The number one issue facing the industry right now is growth. The cost and execution of growth faces a lot of challenges – capital intensity, pricing erosion, and the competitive landscape. In a capital-intensive business that requires investment to get to the next step, understanding how to unlock growth, profitable growth, is really challenging. That’s really what we’re trying to help our customers achieve and figure out.
Our success is really driven by solving something that’s fundamentally needed. Our customer success largely comes from us caring and demonstrating that we’re partnering with our customers at every step and building trust along the way.
What’s next for Connectbase? Where do you see the platform and the ecosystem in 5 years?
B: Well, we just raised $21 million in new (Series C) capital to invest in our company and our platform…and our ability to drive success. The latest funding will be used to enhance our Connected World platform capabilities, expand digital services into more global markets and grow the team – including on the go-to-market side. We will also expand our plan-to-order workflow capabilities to drive integration and insight, and to simplify the user experience. Our growth focuses on three pillars.
First, we want to amplify our ability to help service providers sell, and we’re going to continue to invest into demand generation, prospecting, targeting, quoting and ordering. We have had success in the commercial seller space, but we are going to double down and invest in that space in particular.
The second centers around the ecosystem. We recognize that the density, size and scale of the ecosystem means being able to digitally do business together. That is foundational to us. And with almost 300 connected service providers to date to that core platform and transacting in real time, we want to really amplify that digital business capability.
We’re embracing our ability to reach out around the world and pull more service providers into our platform. We want to continue to extend around the world to support service providers wherever they are. And we think that strengthens the ecosystem’s ability to serve.
The third involves recognizing the incredible value that service providers bring to the overall digital economy and enabling them to not just be the supply chain for digital and cloud, but to create value with that perspective. They can enhance the overall customer experience of the digital tools that businesses, residents, schools and government are going to need and shape those decisions based on the connectivity. They can be be a partner in that process, one that helps them both transact and elevate customer experience and value.
Share some insights into the new investors and why this round of investment is so important
B: First off, our current investors from Series A and B participated. The four of them continued to show commitment and excitement for Connectbase and that’s important to me. And then we brought in two new investors that led the series C. Both are very well versed in the connectivity infrastructure space, having invested in fiber companies, data center companies and tower companies over the past few decades, and really have strong ties into the communications infrastructure ecosystem.
Overall, I think that was an important step for us to bring that reach into Connectbase given our role of connecting the ecosystem together and serving 28 of the top 30 largest infrastructure providers in the U.S. and some of the largest data centers and tower operators in the world.
Collectively, our new investors recognize that software and data play a really important part in monetizing infrastructure assets and the services that go over them. We wanted to make sure we had that direct tie into the industry, the knowledge and the relationships to maximize our next steps. This round is important because we have big ambitions to be the partner for the industry. We want to continue to step forward and take a greater role in helping our customers drive growth, drive profitability and improve customer experience. This round will help us really drive forward and support our customers and the connectivity industry on a global basis.
To see the full Series C announcement, click here.