Talkdesk closes €100m deal. Portugal has a new unicorn

  • ECO News
  • 3 October 2018

Viking Global valued Talkdesk at €1.2 bn. With this investment, the company will expand commercially, to the European market, focusing as well on product development.

Talkdesk is the most recent unicorn funded by Portuguese. After Farfetch in 2017, and OutSystems, earlier this year, the company founded by Tiago Paiva and Cristina Fonseca after closing a funding round gathering €100m, is now estimated to be worth €1.2bn, which puts it on the unicorn startup category.

Founded in 2011, the company was the Portuguese founded startup which reached the imaginary animal goal the fastest: as for Farfetch, the company founded by José Neves had been founded in 2007, and it only reached the unicorn category in 2015, after five funding rounds which gave the company an $86m boost; as for Outsystems, the company had been valued at $1bn on the 5th of June this year, after an investment round where it gathered $360m after 17 years of company history.

The €100m round was led by Viking Global, which is experienced in taking startups to the IPO level and accompanied by DFJ, who had formerly already been an investor of Talkdesk, having previously invested in companies such as Tumblr, Twitter, and Skype. The investment will reinforce three main axes of Talkdesk’s project, said Marco Costa, the CEO, to ECO.

“It will be directed at three different areas: we have an ambitious plan to get to 1000 engineers until 2020 and we’re investing in the product development; for the commercial expansion, we will hire marketing teams; on a third level, we plan to reinforce our presence in the European market”, he told ECO.

400 people, two offices in the United States — in San Francisco and Salt Lake City –, Lisbon and Porto, the company is expecting to keep the engineering department based in Portugal. In three years, the company’s revenue had a tenfold increase.

Talkdesk develops software for companies with call center services: the companies use the startup to create centers with which the clients can communicate, being a cloud-based contact center software provider. The calls are forwarded to Salesforce or Zendesk, which are informed on the client’s personal info and know who the client should be in contact with.

Talkdesk works with client-companies based in Europe and the United States, where they already have around 40 clients in total, and it is developing in a market where only 10% of the players present cloud solutions. This segment, which represents around $40 bn in total, shall grow by 30% over the next few years.