Seoul, South Korea /PRNewswire/ - ProtoPie (protopie.io), the award-winning prototyping software, has expanded its Series A with $6.3 million in additional funding from new investors, including its first Silicon Valley VC, Vela Partners. This excitement follows the rapid growth of the company in the last 18 months that was fueled by early seed investment from Samsung Venture Investment. Today's investment round will accelerate the growth of ProtoPie in North America, the fastest-growing market for its leading software. This round brings ProtoPie's total venture capital funding to date to $9.9M.
Vela Partners describes themselves as a "tech-enabled investment firm", and their leadership team is comprised of various former Googlers from the cloud division. It was through the network of Ex-Googlers that Vela Partners and ProtoPie were introduced. Yigit Ihlamur, Partner at Vela, will be working closely with ProtoPie's executive leadership as a strategic advisor, and voiced his enthusiasm, "at Vela, we use a proprietary, deep-learning tool to discover and evaluate potential investment opportunities. Once ProtoPie was on our watchlist, our AI-powered, in-house software highlighted their mounting success metrics and even greater potential. The design community is demanding ever more powerful prototyping tools, especially for mobile and connected device prototyping, and ProtoPie is not just leading that category, they are defining a brand new one. The growing success of their pioneering software, with over 100,000 global paid users, speaks for itself. But ProtoPie users also can't stop talking about it. It's incredible how much love they show for the company on Twitter. Those metrics say a lot about ProtoPie, but it was meeting the team and working with them personally that made me so confident in their future. Rarely have I seen a team so engaged, hard-working and willing to experiment. Prototyping isn't just their product; it's clearly also their philosophy. They have achieved so much with only $3.5M in seed funding, which is tremendous proof of the dedication of their team and the value of their product. We are very fortunate to be able to participate in this oversubscribed round and join ProtoPie's meteoric rise."
Based in Seoul and staffed with top talent from the Korean tech hub, ProtoPie has quickly grown to prominence, with its collaborative software already becoming a staple at leading design firms including Google, Microsoft, HBO, BMW, Samsung, GoPro, as well as Verizon, Nintendo, ASOS and other companies worldwide. They rely on the software to efficiently and effectively explore new ideas and realize new design innovations in consumer tech, IoT experiences and even manufacturing processes, where ProtoPie is the undisputed industry leader.
The rapid growth of ProtoPie over the last two years comes as a result of its user-first approach to software development, which has seen rapid improvement and responsive updates to better tailor the tools for the world's top design teams. As a result, ProtoPie has defined a new market and become an integral tool for the high-speed workflows of today's design pioneers.
Tony Kim, Co-founder & CEO of ProtoPie, shared in an all-staff email, "Today's news is a testament to the quality of our product and the strength of our team. Demand for ProtoPie is growing rapidly worldwide, and this significant new funding will fuel us for the next wave of growth as we expand our operations in North America and prepare for the IoT boom that we're uniquely poised to fuel. Beyond the finances, this investment from Vela Partners is also an investment of strategic guidance and invaluable support. I am incredibly proud of everything we have accomplished to date, and even more excited about the future we are building together."
Vela Partners first worked with ProtoPie in a pure advisory role, offering guidance to prepare the tech firm for a then-upcoming investment round. However, after learning more about the software, witnessing the overwhelming positivity from users, seeing the burgeoning new category that ProtoPie is clearly leading and feeling the dedication and expertise of the team, they couldn't afford to miss the opportunity of joining the round as well.
ProtoPie will deploy the funds to establish its North American headquarters, accelerate customer acquisition and explore key strategic partnerships in the Bay Area. ProtoPie is already in the process of scaling up its design and sales teams.
ProtoPie is the most intuitive tool used to turn UI/UX design ideas into highly interactive prototypes for mobile, desktop, web, all the way to IoT. The software supports individuals and teams to ideate, iterate and innovate faster, overcoming today's challenges to design and realize tomorrow's best digital products.