Online design and publishing platform Canva is the latest startup unicorn from Australia, with a new valuation of US$1 billion after having raised a US$40 million round.
Melanie Perkins, CEO and Co-founder at Canva said that while the company is profitable with investments from previous rounds remaining untouched, they decided to take on additional capital to pursue exciting global opportunities and rapidly advance its core product offering. In this round Sequoia China has joined forces with long-time Canva investors, Blackbird Ventures and Felicis Ventures, in backing the design company with a new round of investment.
Melanie adds, “We’ve only just started to scratch the surface of achieving our goal of empowering everyone to design anything, and publish anywhere.
“Design is no longer a niche requirement – every single profession today needs design to help communicate their message. In years gone by someone in sales could draft a letter but now has to create an engaging presentation to win customers. Non-profits have to create designs to spread their message to fundraise. Even the startup staple of business plans have been replaced by graphic pitch decks.
“The world is rapidly becoming more visual, yet traditional design tools in the market are too complicated to use, or so costly that they become inaccessible. Canva is designed to enable individual and teams to collaborate seamlessly, and our growing footprint is evidence of the widespread need that we are addressing. This additional funding will bring us one step closer to giving everyone the ability to thrive in an increasingly visual environment.”
What has Canva been up to lately?
This announcement follows several new product launches this year from the 250 person-startup headquartered in Sydney, including the platform’s availability in 100 languages, a Canva for Android app, as well as rolling out Canva Print in the US, Europe and Australia, with Mexico recently made available. Canva also supports over 17,000 non-profits around the world with free access to its premium product.
Rick Baker, Partner at Blackbird Ventures, who led the investment round, added, “Canva is making huge strides in democratizing design for everyone. Its product growth and adoption across many demographics is truly exceptional.
“In just four years, Melanie Perkins and her team have taken the startup from humble beginnings in Australia, to what has now blossomed into one the fastest growing software businesses of all time. It’s a very exciting space to be in as we start redefining the workplace, and what it means to communicate in the 21st century.”