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In 2006, British mathematician Clive Humby famously proclaimed, "Data is the new oil." If that's the case, venture capital tracking platform Crunchbase is dripping in it.
Crunchbase, an essential subscription service for investors, analysts, and financial stakeholders for its huge proprietary database of start-ups and venture capital investments, closed a $50 million series D round Wednesday. The round was oversubscribed, meaning more investors turned up than the company asked for, a testament to just how valuable data is, even in a world of $100 oil barrels.
They ARR Who They ARR
Crunchbase's late-stage fundraising round flies in the face of, well, Crunchbase data. In the second quarter, funding for late-stage ventures fell 31% to $66.7 billion from $96.9 billion in the first quarter.
According to CEO Jager McConnell, what makes the company attractive is that, unlike so many of the start-ups in its database, his company "took a step back from rapid growth in favor of a more measured, balanced approach," he told Forbes. Crunchbase went from burning $3 for every $1 in annual recurring revenue in 2019 to burning $2 for every $9 in ARR now. That hasn't stopped it from growing, but it's also prevented a U-turn that many tech firms are now faced with:
- Crunchbase had 75 million unique users from July 2021 to July 2022, and 60,000 of them pay $29 or more a month to access data. The company had a cash flow-positive first quarter, and it's set to double its annual recurring revenue this year to $38 million.
- "The recent onslaught of down rounds and mass layoffs from companies who very recently hit unicorn status shows how outsized burn rates can be hidden behind oversized funding rounds, covering up the reality of weak business fundamentals," McConnell, who did not reveal the valuation of Crunchbase's latest round told TechCrunch. (Competitor PitchBook listed it as worth $70 million in 2017).
The Others: In addition to PitchBook, Crunchbase competes with well-known data providers CB Insights and Owler. Lusha, a growing crowdsourcing data platform for business-to-business sales, raised $205 million last November for a $1.5 billion unicorn valuation.