Propel raises $20M funding for its product lifecycle management platform

Product lifecycle management startup Propel PML Inc. today announced a new $20 million round of funding led by Salesforce Ventures.

Existing investors Norwest Venture Partners, Cloud Apps Capital Partners, Green D Ventures and TIFF also participated in today’s Series C round, as did new investor Ankona Capital, bringing Propel’s total amount raised to $48 million to date.

Propel’s flagship offering is the Product 360 platform, which it says is a unified quality management, product lifecycle management and commercialization tool that’s built atop the Salesforce.com customer relationship management platform.

The idea with Product 360 is that companies can link product, quality, customer and supplier information on a single platform to launch products more quickly, simplify quality and compliance issues, and deliver a better experience overall for their product design and sales teams. The company says the approach has proved to be effective in industries such as consumer tech, health and life sciences and automotive supply, where there’s a need to bring high quality products to market fast.

Product 360 provides single view of a product’s data from all of the key systems involved in the development workflow, including engineering, manufacturing, quality control, sales and service, linking that to supplier and customer information. The idea is not just to ensure companies build high quality products, but also to support recurring revenue models that rely on long-term customer engagement after the initial product sale. By enabling collaboration across all teams and providing a single view of real-time data, companies can be more responsive to their customers, Propel said.

Another benefit of Product 360 that’s especially relevant in today’s climate is it allows manufacturers to establish and optimize their supply chain strategies to minimize any disruptions.

Propel says customers including Vizio Inc., GoPro Inc., SimpliSafe Inc. and Royal Dutch Shell plc have launched new products in as much as 30% less time, while increasing margins by up to 50%. They’re also able to resolve customer issues by up to 25% faster, the company reckons.

Propel Chief Executive Rey Hein said it’s more important than ever to enable faster innovation and supply chain resiliency for new business models to succeed.

“Progressive business and IT leaders recognize the need to put the customer at the center of the product experience,” he said.

Propel said it will use today’s funding to invest in product development and sales.

“The increase in demand for Propel from mid-market and enterprise companies shows the market is using Propel to help drive revenue growth by enabling new customer engagement models,” said Jared Smith, general partner with Ankona Capital.

Image: Propel

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