After focusing on Asian markets, particularly in Southeast Asia, Eko Communications, based in Bangkok, is preparing to face Slack, Microsoft Teams and other business messaging applications in Europe. The start-up announced today that it has raised a Series B of $ 20 million and opened offices in London (which will serve as its new commercial headquarters), Amsterdam and Berlin.
Financing, led by SMD Ventures, with the participation of AirAsia The digital investment arm Redbeat Ventures, Gobi Partners, East Ventures and returning investors, brings the total amount raised from Eko Communication to $ 28.7 million. The company's Series A was announced in 2015, followed by $ 2 million in strategic funds from the Japanese conglomerate Itochu last year. Eko Communications (not to be confused with Eko, an interactive video start) has already served clients such as Thai mobile operator True, Radisson and 7-Eleven.
Eko Communications' B Series is designed for its ambitious global expansion plans in the first quarter of 2019. Korawad Chearavanont, CEO and co-founder of the company, told TechCrunch in an email that it has already located products for markets target like the United Kingdom, Ireland, Benelux and the DACH region (Germany, Austria and Switzerland)
Eko Communications wants to expand in the European Union and the United States because their economies are significantly larger than those in Southeast Asia, said Chearavanont . This, in addition to the fact that both have larger business IT markets thanks to the companies' higher software spending, means that "for Eko to reach the scale necessary to become a global player in the mobile enterprise market, the Continuous growth in these markets is critical. " ", He added.
The company claims that its revenues have more than tripled in the last year and that it now has more than 500,000 recurring paid users.Of course, any enterprise messaging startup has to deal with the Slack spectrum and Microsoft Teams, however, positioning Eko Communications as a rival for those services is not entirely accurate because they are aimed at different customers.
The Slack and Microsoft teams are "mainly used by employees of the Knowledge & # 39; and these systems have prices for this type of devices. users, "said Chearavanont. "Being a company that is dedicated first to mobile devices, we target companies that have a large presence of mobile device personnel first traditionally in industries such as retail and hospitality (the service sector in general)." Many employees in these sectors still depend on messaging applications such as WhatsApp or Email communicates, so Eko Communications seeks to facilitate companies to transition their methods of ad hoc communication to a more secure and efficient system with tools such as API to help them integrate legacy systems.