Melbourne — September 16, 2021 — Delegate Connect, the world’s leading end-to-end event platform, announced today that it has raised $10 million in seed capital in their first ever funding round.
The round is one of Australia’s largest Seed rounds, and for AirTree Ventures, who led the round, it’s the biggest Seed cheque written in the fund's history. The round also includes investment from Skip Capital, the private fund of Kim Jackson and Scott Farquhar (co-founder of Atlassian), along with investment fund TEN13. Founders of some of Australia’s top startups, including Alex Zaccaria, CEO and Founder of LinkTree, and Andrew Barnes, CEO and Founder of Go1, have also joined the oversubscribed funding round.
Delegate Connect’s end-to-end event platform has had rapid uptake during the COVID-19 pandemic. As the world opens up, the team is seeing increased demand for their comprehensive hybrid technology platform, which seamlessly connects in person and online Delegates, and takes the stress away from the event organiser. This signals a longer-term shift to virtual and hybrid events where location, audience, venue and time zone barriers don’t exist.
Having found a loyal base of clients already, including the Edinburgh International Television Festival, Sportsbet and the World Dental Congress, Delegate Connect will use the funds to further fuel international growth and expand the team globally. This will include increasing their existing headcount from 45 in their Melbourne, London and Norway offices to over 100 by recruiting an additional 65 roles by December 2021. The opening of a US-based office is also planned in the next few months.
“We have clients around the world who love using our platform because it is built to solve the exact problems they are faced with,” says Jordan Walsh, Co-founder and CEO of Delegate Connect. “With the incredible demand we’re seeing for our services from overseas, we’re looking forward to building out our teams there to be closer to our customers and continue to provide an end-to-end solution for events globally.”
The funding round will also provide growth capital to continue Delegate Connect's rapid product development and further enhance the hybrid and virtual event experience on the platform. The platform has features such as automatic tracking and accreditation of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) points, as well as the ability to run unlimited concurrent streams of content. These features are vital to servicing industries that are increasing their demand for hybrid and virtual events, including pharmaceutical companies, medical associations and corporate sectors.
“This year we’ve held hundreds of large scale virtual and hybrid conferences on the platform. In August, the World Library and Information Congress was held on the Delegate Connect platform, attracting 4,000 delegates. Our technology was able to deliver the whole 3-day conference live across 3 different time zones and in 7 different languages,” adds Jordan Walsh. “Bringing on an incredible group of investors enables us to continue to push the limits of what is possible in event technology, and we are so excited to share some of the world-first features that we will be launching over the coming months.”
“We're looking for founder-market fit in early-stage investments, and Jordan and Jacob's mix of deep technical expertise and decades of experience in the events industry is a textbook definition of it. After hearing from customers about how much they love the product, it's clear Delegate Connect's product has been built by event people for event people,” says John Henderson, Partner at AirTree Ventures.
“The rapid adoption of virtual and hybrid events in the past 18 months represents a structural shift going forward. Delegate Connect's end-to-end technology is differentiated from their off-the-shelf competitors, delivering a high-quality, location-agnostic experience that maximises engagement for attendees. The team has had undeniable traction, and we're looking forward to seeing this continue as they expand internationally,” adds John.
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