Fresh, pardon the pun, off a massive Series D funding round, Alan Berkson, Director of Community Outrach at Freshdesk fills us in on their journey, where it began and where they are headed now.
In 2013, Freshdesk participated in The Summit Dublin’s START program for early stage startups. At the time, we had 10,000 customers. Since then, we have grown rapidly. We now have 23,000 customers in 175 countries and are recognized as a leader in customer support sofware. Last week we closed a $31 million Series D funding round with Tiger Global, Accel Partners, and Google Capital. The START program was a helpful venue to us as a growing startup. It was great to connect and share with with other startups, hear from customers, develop key partnerships, and get feedback from influencers.
The highlight for us at The Summit was the opportunity to speak with so many other startup entrepreneurs, some of whom were already Freshdesk customers. There is nothing like hearing directly from your customers and the market about what they need, what is working well, and what you can improve. We got lots of great input that has helped us evolve our products and grow.
We also participated in The Summit’s sister event in the US, Collision Conference, which took place in a specially renovated hotel in the revitalized Las Vegas Downtown. It drew entrepreneurs from North and South America and provided a great setting for sharing and networking.
Since The Summit was such a valuable platform for us, we have been eager to give back. While one of the biggest challenges for startups is getting new customers, it’s even more important to keep those customers. And we know a key ingredient is delivering great customer service. We want to make sure startups have a strong foundation in customer service, so as one way to contribute to the startup community, in 2012, Freshdesk launched Future Fund to provide a year of free customer support software to eligible startups. We have extended this offer to Summit and Collision START and ALPHA participants to help them support their customers as they grow.
We look forward to returning to The Summit this year, not only to showcase our new products and continue our conversations with the community there, but also to share what we’ve learned in our journey so far with the new group of Summit startup program entrepreneurs.
Alan Berkson is Director of Community Outreach at Freshdesk. He writes and speaks about customer service, technology, and digital media based on his deep experience across Main Street, Wall Street and the United Nations, and as a pioneer in the managed services business in the SMB market.