airwoot

Chennai-based Freshdesk on Wednesday announced acquisition of Airwoot, marking its 5th acquisition in the last 12 months and 2nd in 2016 for an undisclosed sum. The Delhi-based Airwoot uses machine learning to help brands deliver high-speed customer service on social media.

Post acquisition, Airwoot's seven-member team will join Freshdesk in Chennai.

Founded in 2012 by a team of PhD dropouts - Saurabh Arora, Prabhat Saraswat and Achal Aggarwal, Airwoot had raised investment from Kae Capital in 2013. The company was part of the eighth batch of The Morpheus accelerator. its is ssentially an intelligent customer experience platform which uses natural language processing and machine learning to automatically identify customers who need engagement and help brands reduce response time.

"This acquisition is in line with our pursuit to bring innovative solutions to the market," said Girish Mathrubootham, founder, Freshdesk.

Backed with funding of $94 million through multiple rounds of funding, Mathrubootham's Freshdesk has been on an acquisition spree since last August. "We had no grand plans to acquire companies or spend allocation," said Mathrubootham. "All our buyouts to date are people who were addressing some part of the customer support problem and more importantly, matched the culture fit of Freshdesk," he added.

The first addition came in Aug 2015, when Freshdesk achieved a customer base of 50,000 customers with acquisition of 1CLICK.io which provided a live video conferencing and co-browsing platform. 1CLICK was seed funded by Blume Ventures and Naru Narayanan from The Chennai Angels.

In the case of Frilp acquisition, Mathrutbootham had been mentor to the founders Shyam Anandaraman and Senthil Kanthaswamy. The start-up had raised $500,000 from angel investors in 2014 and were in search for a fresh round when Mathrubootham took them in.

By the end of 2015, VC funds were drying up especially for growth stage startups and Konotor, a mobile first user engagement platform had hit a dead end with raising a fresh round of funds when he approached Mathrubootham for advice. "We were looking at building a smart mobile team within Freshdesk at the time. When I met the Konotor team, I knew I would need 9-12 months to catch up if I had to build the same expertise in house. So I made them an offer," he said.

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