CreativeCo, a growth equity studio based in Charlotte NC, is pleased to announce a very active first 9 months of operation since it launched in April 2020 — investing in 9 early-growth stage business cloud companies.
While 2020 was a challenging year for many, it was an incredible year for the cloud. Remote work pushed businesses to accelerate adoption of cloud solutions. Digital transformation’s march across all markets raced forward.
CreativeCo is investing in the cloud predominantly at the seed or series A stage, when a business has revenue traction between $500k and $3M ARR. We believe the market for investing at this stage outside of traditional VC regions is a great place to focus. For years, this stage in non-VC cities has been underserved even though the upside of these businesses is highly attractive — and only getting better with more business cloud adoption and more private equity money coming into the cloud opportunity.
We set out with a goal to help fill this financing gap and invest in 2–4 businesses in 2020. Instead, we invested in 9, demonstrating the volume of great cloud companies that are early in their run from $1M to $10M revenue or better (early-growth stage).
CreativeCo’s 9 new investments
With the launch of our first fund in April, we invested in Atlanta-based SingleOps, a SaaS platform for landscaping businesses, and Charlotte-based Rent Ready — a tech-enabled service for multi-family apartment turns.
In June, we invested in Ziflow, a SaaS collaborative proofing solution for enterprises and agencies.
We followed this up in September with an investment in DebtBook, a Charlotte-based SaaS platform for municipal debt issuers.
Then we had a very busy Q4. In October, we invested in Medxoom, an Atlanta-based SaaS platform for third-party health insurance administrators, and Rabbu, a Charlotte-based digital property management business. In November, we invested in Apty, a Dallas-based SaaS digital adoption platform. And in December, we invested in IRALogix, a Pittsburgh-based SaaS platform for white label IRA specialty offerings, and OneRail, an Orlando-based last-mile delivery platform for enterprise retailers and distributors.
These 9 new investments joined our existing portfolio of Spotio, a Dallas-based SaaS platform for field sales teams, Tracks N Teeth, a Seattle-based e-commerce company focused on aftermarket construction equipment parts, and SocialStudies, a New York-based influencer marketing platform.
So we wrap up 2020 with 12 companies in our Fund I portfolio, all of which are performing nicely. Our 12 companies are generating a collective $28.5M revenue, equating to an average run-rate of $2.4M.
Our studio’s value-add role
CreativeCo’s unique growth equity studio model invests capital and provides capabilities to help accelerate a business. In 2020 we demonstrated our studio team’s ability to add value in two ways:
- Product acceleration. Our studio team of 50 designers and engineers is actively engaged in designing and building software to improve our portfolio companies’ product competitive advantage.
- Eastern European product team creation. We are facilitating the creation of permanent product teams based in Eastern Europe. Leveraging our core team and long-standing platform there, we are building new high-quality teams that are directly hired by our portfolio companies. We believe teams such as this are ideal for capital efficient growth and are a competitive advantage for business cloud companies that rely on product to succeed.
What’s ahead for 2021
We plan to continue our active pace and make 3 new initial investments per quarter from our first fund. We’ve met some awesome teams and are looking forward to adding more great companies to our portfolio.
In 2021, we also expect our portfolio companies to raise additional capital to fund continued growth. CreativeCo will be launching a second fund to ensure that we continue to support our businesses with follow-on investment as they accelerate.
Finally, we’re going to unite all our activities (including Castle Digital Partners) under the CreativeCo name, with our business lines operating under Capital and Studio labels. We’ve worked long and hard together to reach this point, and our team, our investment portfolio, and our studio clients will be moving forward together as CreativeCo.
Thank you to everyone that is part of this journey with us.