Funding our biggest vision for visual collaboration
July 20, 2021
$50M in funding at $2B valuation means imagination and play are now essential to transform teamwork
Over the last year, you worked from everywhere. You reimagined how to work digitally. You were able to keep going. We are happy to say you were able to count on us to provide a visual collaboration workspace to combine with the rest of your collaboration stack.
You shared your ideas visually.
You transformed teamwork.
Because you realized something was missing. Especially for the type of teamwork that required deep thinking, intimate collaboration, and active live participation. The kind of collaboration typical in strategic planning, innovation workshops and customer engagements ... there had to be a different way than talking to a screen all day.
In addition to making it easy to share with your team, you wanted a way to:
Think out loud visually with your team, using a common visual language
Scale playful and productive methods to guide teamwork
Facilitate teamwork (or connect with an expert to facilitate) to build trust, drive participation, and level up the collaboration in your team
You realized that it was the combination of a digital workspace with guided visual methods and people that drove the change you needed.
A “whiteboard” was not enough.
Transform teamwork at scale
More than six years ago old friends at IBM pioneered the change at scale through their IBM Enterprise Design Thinking and Agile programs. They curated a series of methods and experts in their company and set the mission to transform how 400k IBMers worked. They were digital-first before the pandemic, and they were able to proceed with business as usual during the pandemic. They are now a case study in Harvard Business School.
Last year the revenue team at Spotify could no longer do OKR planning face-to-face. So Emem Adjah, then global head of monetization, made the workshop digital with MURAL. She facilitated exercises with her team, connecting the dots between the company vision and its impact on revenue. She ran breakout sessions for brainstorming and prioritizing key results. Doing this work with her team online saved time. It also fostered alignment by putting everyone on the same virtual page. Emem’s team discovered they could continue working in this new way. They could combine methods and visual collaboration whenever and wherever they wanted.
Stories like these are becoming very common:
Thoughtworks’ global leadership had to forgo their prioritization offsite, so they quickly pivoted and discovered they could take that off site online. Here’s how it went.
Booz Allen adapted their PI planning workshop to work for 300+ remote participants (all new to remote workshops). Once the dust settled, they delivered all quarterly commitments and increased delivery by 30%. Check it out.
The Publicis Sapient product teams have also discovered how they can work visually together in MURAL to create alignment, even when the work is particularly complex. Sheldon Monteiro, EVP and chief product officer, shared that, “Real customer centricity requires input and alignment from cross-functional teams. This is especially hard to accomplish without a shared canvas to build understanding. Our Customer Experience & Innovation experts found they could build journey maps faster using MURAL to brainstorm, synthesize ideas, facilitate alignment, teamwork and trust. The result was faster — and stronger — consensus with client stakeholders.
We hear stories like these all the time. You’re transforming teamwork, and it is remarkable.
It’s an exciting time for teamwork.
Business impact drives our growth
Our investors realized that you came from teams at small and big companies, in all industries, even the most regulated like financial services. Transformation leaders in companies like IBM, Microsoft, Facebook, Booz Allen Hamilton, Publicis Sapient, USAA, SAP, and Atlassian trusted us to deploy their methods.
Our investors also realized that once we start relationships, we work together to expand them. They saw that more than 100 of the companies that MURAL enables now pay over $100k per year for MURAL's help (an over 3x increase year over year).
And, yes, our investors are transforming how they work too. Here’s Jeff Lieberman, managing director at Insight Partners:
“Last year, Insight Partners saw teams transform how they interact and creatively work together through the adoption of digital-first visual collaboration with MURAL. Now, as organizations shift to a new hybrid way of working, MURAL is uniquely positioned to make it easy for teams to ideate and create together from anywhere … Our team has been using MURAL for our own workshop and board meetings, too. The meetings we run in MURAL are much more engaging and fun.” – Jeff Lieberman Managing Director, Insight Partners
Build 10 years in 1
This year marks the 10 year anniversary since we started this company with Agus and Pato. We went through a lot of discoveries, failures and successes over the last decade. Now we can say we have a clear vision of what we need to do to address the problems teams and organizations face today.
Now we have the confidence to go forward at a faster level of innovation because we have the right funding and the right people in place. We now have clarity on what the Imagination Cloud will be and how we will level up teamwork with imagination.
We are going to accomplish a lot in the next year.
Great software people love
MURAL enables people to imagine, think, and come up with amazing things together. We'll keep enabling that fun and visual collaboration and dramatically improve how we integrate with other software. The combination of space, methods, and people will guide us.
Service at a global scale
Our enterprise customers want help with making sure that MURAL gets embedded into how they work. We will expand how we serve in every timezone with the highest level of service and for 10s of thousands of people in each client. This means deploying and tracking best practices. It also means always staying on top of compliance, security, and reliability requirements.
MURAL as a great place to work
"How we work is as important as what we sell." None of this can be done without people. Most of our investments are in our MURAListas. We’ll keep evolving as a team while staying true to our culture and our values.
By the way, teams in MURAL are some of the most engaged ones in our community. You should check out how we ran a 400 person virtual retreat full of magic:
Build with the best
I am excited to have Bill Veghte join our board as executive chairman. The leadership team and many MURAListas have worked with Bill over the last year. Everyone has seen the incredible, positive impact he has on the business, the product, the MURAL leadership team, and me. I am excited to have him step up formally into this role as we shape the future of the company.
Secondly, I am excited to announce that Ryan Smith, executive chairman and co-founder of Qualtrics, has accepted my offer to partner as my advisor. Ryan is an incredible entrepreneur who has built a category-defining company. Experience management and a world-class go-to-market program made Qualtrics one of the most relevant companies in SaaS. It is a privilege to have him on board.
Finally, the MURAL team has been growing with top executives:
Our Chief Revenue Officer Ray Savona joined us from Autodesk, where he saw firsthand the transformation that our partner LUMA ignited, and MURAL helped catalyze.
Our engineering organization is led by VP Kirby Frugia, formerly of InVision and New Relic.
VP of Product Design Kit Unger, formerly of Smartsheet, and co-founder Agus Soler lead the charge in building the MURAL of tomorrow.
Our Chief Community Officer, Paul Estes, is supporting the growing community of visual method experts, facilitators, and Imagination Workers.