Onna, a platform that helps companies integrate knowledge and derive insights from workplace apps, has raised $27 million in a series B round of funding led by Atomico.
The raise comes as cloud-based services and apps have surged these past few months due to the rapid acceleration in remote working. A byproduct of using all these various collaboration, communication, and productivity apps in the workplace, however, is that the knowledge generated inside them can often become siloed, which is what Onna is setting out to solve with what it calls “the world’s first knowledge integration platform.”
Founded out of Barcelona in 2015, Onna has amassed an impressive roster of clients since its launch in late 2017, including Facebook, Dropbox, Lyft, Electronica Arts (EA), and Fitbit. The Onna platform allows users to connect all their various data conduits, giving them the ability to search and manage the information from a centralized dashboard.
To set things up, customers connect Onna to the API of each data source, which includes Box, Dropbox, G Suite, Slack, Microsoft 365, Gmail, AWS, Confluence, Zendesk, Salesforce, Twitter, GitHub, Hangouts, and more. It’s worth noting that Onna isn’t limited to cloud software, as it works with on-premise applications too.
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Once connected, users can search for more than 1,000 file formats (including images and video files) from across the connected apps, while Onna also leans on optical character recognition (OCR) to search “inside” images and PDFs. The user can also drill down into specific types of data that they’re looking for using proximity searches or specific boolean searches, while they can use Onna’s built-in machine learning smarts to identify specific kinds of documents such as contracts.
Data search and discovery is only one of the use-cases though, as Onna can be used for information governance, archiving, and even regulatory compliance. Using machine learning, Onna can identify content across enterprise apps that contain sensitive or private information, such as passport numbers and photos, bank account details, or social security numbers. This is particularly important given the growing number of privacy regulations around the world such as Europe’s GDPR and California’s CCPA.
As with other platforms that help companies operate remotely, Onna reports an uptick in interest during the COVID-19 crisis in terms of the size of contracts and companies that are showing an interest.
“Last year we grew 400% and, while we remain on a similar growth path for this year, the difference is that we’ve also seen inbound request volume for our technology, size of contracts, and scale of companies in terms of global employee numbers increase exponentially — from 20,000 employee companies to 100,000+ employee global organisations,” Onna CEO and founder Salim Elkhou told VentureBeat. “There is no doubt that this trend has been accelerated by the world’s workforce going fully remote all at the same time.”
In addition to its high-profile customers, Onna has also enlisted a host of notable backers through the years, including Dropbox and Slack (via Slack Fund) which joined the company’s $11 million series A round last June. For its series B round, in addition to Atomico as its lead investor Onna has once again secured Slack, alongside Dawn Capital, Nauta Capital, and Glynn Capital. Atomico partner Ben Blume will also now join Onna’s board.
Plume told VentureBeat that although Atomico had conversed with Onna in the past, the discussions around its series B investment only began around the time that the U.K. went into full lockdown in March — and this was its first ever investment that was carried out remotely over Zoom.
“As we have thought about investments post-COVID, we have considered how each company is impacted by the situation, both directly in the short term, and over the longer term through the behavioral and economic shifts that the crisis has accelerated,” Plume said. “Onna supports companies in managing their knowledge across many best in class collaboration tools, which have seen accelerated adoption during the COVID crisis, and as such we took this as a strong signal of the company’s long term prospects as we evaluated and made the decision to lead the round.”
Onna currently has 100 employees spread across its dual headquarters in Barcelona and New York, as well as its hubs in San Francisco, Raleigh, and Toulouse (France). With another $27 million in the bank, the company said that it plans to expand its teams across all five locations and may open additional offices in London and elsewhere.
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