Flickr co-founder Stewart Butterfield started a collaborative start-up company in 2013 which developed the popular workplace software Slack. Within 24 hours of its launch, over 8,000 people had already signed up for the platform, and within 9 months the company had raised $180 million in funds. In April of this year, the company received another $160 million in funding, bumping its worth to a comfortable $2.8 billion. Butterfield happily disclosed that the company hadn’t even started with the $120 million it received last October. The company continues to draw attention from a multitude of investors like Google Ventures, Digital Sky Technology, and more.
Investors are interested for two main reasons: Slacks rapid growth and its versatile usability. The platform is used for workplace communication and collaboration. Over the past decade, communication services have become more fragmented – branching off into multiple platforms like Hangouts, iMessage, or Skype. The goal of Slack is to bring communication back to one place and increase workplace productivity. While it may seem at first like Slack is just another chat room, it offers much more than these other platforms. Slack allows companies to see the entire history of communication in one place, providing more transparency and insight into workplace operations. It also reduces the need for meetings, conference calls, and interoffice e-mails. Essentially, it makes it much easier to delegate and complete tasks.
Although Slack offers a free version, there are already over 200,000 users that gladly pay for service. Paid service includes more storage space and some other features. Some of these paid users are corporate giants including Adobe, The New York Times, and HBO, to name a few. Over 750,000 workers use this software daily.
Aside from stashing away money as a safeguard against whatever the future may hold, the company also plans to make some improvements down the line. While the software works great for smaller businesses, the chat rooms can get a bit crowded when larger companies are involved. Slack wants to integrate scalability to make the platform just as beneficial for companies of 50,000+ employees.