UPDATED 09:00 EST / OCTOBER 05 2023


Live SaaS sales demo automation platform Saleo raises $13M in funding

Saleo Inc., creator of what it says is the first live demo automation platform for software-as-a-service providers, announced today it has closed on a $13 million fundraising.

Today’s round was led by Emergence Capital and Tech Square Ventures. Saleo said the money will help expand its product and engineering efforts, grow its go-to-market teams and accelerate adoption of its two products.

Saleo says its platform is designed to help SaaS sales teams create more realistic demo experiences of their products, using real data so they can be personalized for each prospective customer.

The flagship product is Saleo Live, which can integrate a client’s data into any SaaS demo environment, so they can experience the authentic product. By doing this, customers can experiment with the full functions of the native application. According to Saleo, this creates a far more compelling demo experience to increase the chance of closing a deal.

The startup said Saleo Live harnesses a generative artificial intelligence-powered modeling engine, which syncs with the native software to populate, create and update realistic data within a demo environment. It can be done with no coding, allowing sales teams to modify any aspect of the data quickly and see this reflected instantly in the demo environment. It means SaaS sales teams have much more flexibility to personalize their pitch to clients.

Saleo said its platform is widely used by SaaS companies such as Salesloft Inc., Zuora Inc. and Clari Inc., helping them to minimize the time spent preparing demos and reduce engineering costs. It makes some big claims about the effectiveness of its tool, saying sales cycles and demo prep time are reduced by an average of 50%, while deal win rates increase by an average of 74%.

Before implementing Sales Live, most sales engineers would spend around three-and-a-half hours per week on demo maintenance. After, this time has been cut to near zero, Saleo said.

“With Saleo, we’ve reduced our weekly demo maintenance time by 100%, and the Salesloft product has never looked more relevant, data complete or valuable,” said Salesloft’s principal demo solutions engineer Ryan Splain.

Liz Miller of Constellation Research Inc. said it’s especially notable that many of Saleo’s early customers are all powerhouse players in the revenue stack. It means Saleo’s customers understand both how revenue works and how SaaS software is sold. “It’s a solid starting point, but Saleo is jumping into a fast-moving industry where the introduction of AI that can generate lightning-fast personalization at scale to power similar experiences,” the analyst said.

Saleo will go up against existing offerings from the likes of Demostack Inc. that also promise easy-to-deploy and highly personalized and contextual product demo experiences. “Where Saleo can stand out is with how its live demos are able to accelerate deal velocity,” Miller said. “The time savings it claims are great, but customers will also expect measurable acceleration, either in the time it takes to close deals or in their average contract values.”

Saleo’s second major product, announced today, is called Saleo Capture It can be used to record segments of live demos that can later be shared as product tours. Those assets can then be used on websites or social media to generate new sales leads, the startup said.

“We’ve worked for years to perfect our AI modeling engine so that it represents a true breakthrough in how demos work — from how they’re created and maintained, to the impact they make on sales and revenue,” said Saleo co-founder and Chief Executive Justin McDonald.

Saleo said one of the advantages of its AI-powered demo modeling engine is that it can learn over time as it absorbs more data. Using the knowledge it acquires, Saleo expects to be able to evolve its products over time with additional capabilities.

Emergence Capital General Partner Joe Floyd said Saleo has made something that’s extremely complex and difficult to achieve, and has done it in a way that’s simple and accessible to end users. He believes the startup is already positioned as a leader in the product demo automation market. “Each of Saleo’s customers can harness the power of personalized live demos that are always current and tailored,” he said.

Image: Saleo

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