South Korean Slack Alternative Toss Lab Bags US$13M Series B Led By SoftBank

Toss Lab’s collaboration platform JANDI sees surge in users acquired across Asian markets this year

South Korean Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) company Toss Lab, which operates team communication and collaboration platform JANDI, has raised US$13 million in a Series B funding round led by SoftBank Ventures Asia, the startup announced in a statement today.

SV Investment, Atinum Investment, Must Asset Management, Shinhan Capital, SparkLabs, and T Investment also participated in the Series B round, according to the press release.

Toss Lab had previously raised $5.2 million in a funding round led by SBI Investment in January 2018. With the fresh funds, the startup became the first Korean enterprise collaboration company to amass over $20 million to date, the statement noted.

Ticket Monster Founder Daniel Shin, Softbank Ventures Asia CEO JP Lee, Kakao ex-CSO Joon-yeol Kang, and SBI Investment Korea CEO Joon-hyo Lee will be joining Toss Lab’s Board of Directors as part of the deal, the statement said. Bespin Global CEO Hanjoo Lee and Sendbird CEO John Kim will also join as advisors to the company.

Similar to Slack, JANDI is an enterprise team collaboration platform that provides a suite of productivity tools including topic-based group chat, task management, video conferencing, and integration with third-party applications such as Trello, JIRA, and Google Calendar, among others.

The collaboration platform has 200,000 customers, from SMEs to large enterprise companies including LG CNS, CJ, Nexen Tire, and Cosmax.

Toss Lab CEO Matthew Kim said in the statement, “With this round of funding, we plan to accelerate our sales and marketing efforts and recruit new talent for the global teams. This is one step closer to establishing JANDI as the leader in enterprise collaboration tools in Asia.”

JANDI offers multi-language support and has also expanded to Japan, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam, and the Middle East. Japan and Taiwan hold the most growth potential for JANDI, Kim noted in an interview.

With governments imposing lockdowns and movement restrictions in light of the global pandemic, collaboration tools like JANDI have become essential to maintaining business continuity, the startup said.

Companies across the globe are looking at digital transformation to sustain operations as more customers are looking for digital alternatives to traditional services.

Moreover, as social distancing norms are strictly implemented to curb the spread of the virus, businesses as well as governments have adopted remote working policies to ensure continuity in their operations. By mid-April, 59 countries had implemented work-from-home policies for non-essential public employees.

According to a report by the International Labour Organization (ILO), only 7.9% of the global workforce were working from home before the pandemic. However, according to ILO estimates, almost 18% of the global workforce could be working from home in the future, indicating a huge increase in demand for collaboration tools like JANDI.

According to the statement, Toss Lab has experienced a revenue growth of over 100% over the past 3 years. JANDI has also seen an 80% increase in the number of users acquired during the global pandemic across its Asian markets, Kim told TechCrunch.

“COVID-19 has provided a prime opportunity for collaboration tools like JANDI, as the outbreak has prompted companies to look for solutions that enable a remote workforce, with minimal impact on employee productivity,” said Lee.

Images courtesy of Toss Lab

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