written by
Johan van Mil

Why we invested in Hello Customer

Investments SaaS 2 min read, October 1, 2020

A few weeks ago we announced our investment in Hello Customer together with Senovo Capital. To demystify the world of venture capital and help founders to raise funding, we are happy to open up and share our investment rationale with you.

Background

Hello Customer is a Belgium-based B2B SaaS Customer feedback and insights platform. The Hello Customer platform collects and analyzes customer feedback and routes actionable insights to relevant departments within an organization.

Team

Hello Customer was founded in 2015 by Leslie Cottenjé (CEO), Bram De Vos (Sales director), and Joeri Pansaerts (CTO). All founders are experienced entrepreneurs who have been working together before at an agency. During this time, they advised enterprises on customer experience. They observed that current SaaS solutions lacked intelligence in routing to make the insights actionable. So, they created their own SaaS solution. More recently the management team was joined by Gilles Declerq (Chief Revenue Officer) and Tom Bogaert (CFO).

We see a lot of startups coming from agencies- we know this is a big benefit. That being said, we also know from first-hand experience that it is hard to shift from selling hours to SaaS licenses. This team cracked that code.

Market

We believe Customer Experience (CX) is critical for companies in this competitive world we live in. Customers are more demanding, sales funnels are increasingly complex, and more brands are shifting from ownership to subscription-based business models. To help understand customers and make proactive customer care available, companies require more data - both structured and unstructured. In turn, this helps nurture loyalty and bring in new sales.

Hello Customer is not alone - they compete in the $7.8bn customer experience industry alongside strong incumbents. What sets them apart? Customer interviews confirmed that Hello Customer’s Natural Language Processing (NLP) technology is best in class. Besides that, they distinguish themselves in making the collected feedback actionable and route it to the right person within the right department.

To give you an example of how that looks: imagine a case where a grocery delivery company delivers a bag of products to the customer, but the yoghurt is past its due date. On its way out, the delivery van scratches the side of the customer’s car. This complaint will be split into two separate tickets: one for the warehouse manager responsible for fresh products, and one for the customer services department regarding the scratched car.

Another key differentiator for Hello Customer is the fact that onboarding is done within a few days, compared to the months it can take to start with one of their incumbent competitors.

Traction

Hello Customer services over 100 large enterprise customers in Belgium, The Netherlands, France, and Spain. These customers are active in industries such as services, utilities, retail, and banking & insurance. Current customers include, amongst others, Coca Cola, DPG Media, Eneco, Iberia and Securitas. As they are doubling in revenue for 5 years in a row and almost tripling in 2019, they have found a scalable way to grow their business.

We are looking forward to working together with the Hello Customer team and our co-investor, Senovo, on this huge opportunity and are excited to be part of this success!

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