MuleSoft joins unicorn ranks with $1.5 billion valuation

Silicon Valley has another so-called unicorn in MuleSoft, which on Tuesday announced it had raised its largest funding round yet — $128 million.

The financing round puts MuleSoft’s valuation at about $1.5 billion and on the track to an initial public offering. The round included for the first time public investors, a deliberate move by the company to start courting the public market.

“We want to start developing relationships with public investor institutions,” CEO Greg Schott said in an interview. “We’re certainly at the scale now” to think about an IPO.

The latest round brings MuleSoft’s total financing raised to $259 million. It was led by Salesforce Ventures, Salesforce’s global corporate investment group, and included participation from strategic investors ServiceNow as well as Cisco Investments. All three companies are important partners for MuleSoft because Salesforce, for instance, uses MuleSoft’s technology to connect its own applications to other back-end systems at companies, such as big databases or mainframe computers. So Salesforce and MuleSoft often make sales together because their technologies work in tandem.

The investment from Salesforce signals the two companies will “continue to have a very close relationship,” Schott said.

San Francisco-based MuleSoft sells platforms for connecting any application, data source or API — application program interfaces. Such services have become in high demand as more companies move from old, clunky technology to adding cloud software and mobile applications, and need help from services such as MuleSoft to make the transition and ensure all the various company applications can talk to each other.

“If you go back 15 years, most CEOs couldn’t spell API, and that now has changed,” Schott said.

Every year companies spend almost $600 billion connecting apps, data and devices. MuleSoft says it does this job cheaper and faster.

“It’s the biggest unsolved problem in IT,” Schott said. “So it’s a massive market.”

The company is on track to earn $100 million in annual sales. Its revenue grew 110 percent in the first quarter this year over the same period in 2014. It has more than 700 customers, including Sutter Health, MasterCard, Tesla, Intuit, Nestle, Walmart, eBay and Verizon.

Founded in 2006, the company has 500 employees, and plans to grow its workforce with the new cash infusion.

Illustration from Thinkstock



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  • Jeffrey Fry

    Guys, a billion valuation does NOT make you a Unicorn.. $1 billion sales does.. can we please stop the nonsense?