Outreach founders raise 1.7M to build ‘Sims for the enterprise’ with new Seattle startup Spot

An instance of a digital GeekWire workplace constructed with Spot. (Spot Pictures)

New funding: Spot, a year-old firm led by the founders of billion-dollar startup Outreach, has raised 1.7 million.

Firm background: GeekWire initially noticed Spot again in June when it was in stealth mode. The 7-person startup is constructing software program that creates a digital illustration of an workplace. Spot CEO Gordon Hempton in contrast it to “The Sims for the Enterprise.”

A whole bunch of digital worlds have been created with Spot for occasions and/or a digital headquarters. The software program continues to be in a closed beta. “Sooner or later, we plan on creating a real digital world that connects groups to one another each inside and outdoors of their organizations,” Hempton mentioned.

Tailwinds: The pandemic-driven shift to distant work is driving adoption of digital work instruments — all the things from video conferencing to collaboration software program. Spot competes with startups comparable to digital workplace area platforms Collect, which simply raised 26 million, and Teamflow, which simply raised 11 million. There are additionally a bevy of others comparable to Virbela and Branch that promote comparable digital HQ software program.

Some corporations together with Amazon need to get employees totally again within the workplace however many — comparable to Zillow Group and Microsoft — are rolling out hybrid workplaces or distributed workforce fashions. That’s excellent news for startups comparable to Spot.

Founders: Hempton left Outreach in October 2019, whereas his co-founder Wes Hather departed in 2020. They helped launch the Seattle unicorn startup seven years in the past with Andrew Kinzer and Manny Medina. Kinzer left in March 2020 and Medina stays CEO of Outreach, which sells gross sales automation software program and raised a 50 million spherical in June. Medina advised GeekWire beforehand that his co-founders left on good phrases.

Earlier than their Outreach days, Hempton and Hather helped begin a Y Combinator graduate called Team Apart that constructed a real-time net collaboration instrument for distant groups.

Traders: Seattle agency Founders’ Co-op is amongst Spot’s backers. The funding in Spot is the agency’s largest preliminary funding up to now and the primary out of Founders’ Co-op new fund. The agency is conversant in Hempton and Hather because it was an preliminary investor in Outreach.