Discover more from next big thing
Announcing Footwork's investment in the SaaS platform powering mobile commerce for brands and retailers.
At Footwork, we look for companies that have signs of product-market fit, in thesis areas we’ve studied to develop a point of view. We also look for founders and founding teams that demonstrate the hunger and humility required to win in competitive markets.
When we were first introduced to Tejas Konduru, co-founder and CEO at Via, we had started to map the landscape of application and infrastructure software in the eCommerce vertical. This is, of course, a market that has already produced several large venture-backed winners, such as Shopify, the business-in-a-box platform that enables anyone to start, manage, and grow an online store, which is a public company worth over $150 billion.
There’s a simple reason for why: eCommerce has become a more exciting opportunity every year for the past several decades, culminating in a banner 16 months due to the pandemic. Brands and retailers, small and large, are gaining more customers online, and consumers are more open to purchasing products of all sorts from any online merchant than ever before. Yet, eCommerce still remains under 20% of total retail sales in the U.S., so the opportunity ahead feels vast.
We believe the opportunity is particularly exciting in mobile commerce, which now accounts for 2/3 of all eCommerce. Merchants want better tools to sell on mobile, through SMS, messaging platforms and their own mobile apps, and consumers are demanding a better buying experience on their phones. That’s where Via comes in — a full suite of software to enable mobile commerce for online merchants.
As we learned about the Via product and go-to-market approach, we became more and more convinced that marketing SaaS in eCommerce is a many-winner market, and that mobile commerce is its future. Via has grown from 0 to over 190 customers in a year, with 400% year-over-year growth in annual recurring revenue (ARR). The product has generated over $50 million in sales for its customers, and represents nearly 50% of revenue for its top customers. The company has burned less than $1 million in capital to achieve these milestones, and has never even done a press release.
None of the above happens without serious customer love, product-market fit, and a driven, hardworking team. Spending time with Tejas, and his co-founder Greg Woodfield, we got more and more excited about Via’s customer-obsessed company DNA, and the vision for what the business can become.
We’re delighted to announce today that Via is coming out of stealth with a $15 million Series A led by Footwork, alongside our friends at Peterson Ventures, which led the company’s Seed, Soma Capital, Worklife Ventures, and an all-star group of eCommerce and SaaS founders, CEOs and executives, including Ryan Smith at Qualtrics, Josh James at Domo, Jeff Kearl at Stance, Todd Pedersen at Vivint, Curt Doman at Progressive Leasing, Jack Altman at Lattice, John Kim at Sendbird, and Anand Chandrasekaran at Five9. Footwork co-founder Mike Smith joined Via’s board alongside Ilana Stern at Peterson (check out her blog post here!) and Via’s co-founders Greg and Tejas. More on Via’s story, including an interview with Tejas, in this piece by Connie Loizos at TechCrunch.
We couldn’t be more excited to work with the Via team, based across Utah and the San Francisco Bay Area, to help eCommerce merchants across the country be more successful in selling on mobile. If this mission appeals to you, come join us! We’re hiring across customer success, engineering, finance, legal, product, and sales.