July 11, 2022

Making sense of the internal information chaos

By Evli Growth Partners
Juuso Koskinen
Associate Partner
We are excited to announce Happeo as the latest addition to our portfolio!

Anyone who has worked for a company with more employees than you can fit in a large meeting room has at some point spent an hour or two too long in finding that relevant document to finish a project. Or, they are missing (and ignoring) important internal news pieces as they disappear among the countless internal news not concerning them.

Today, with companies giving more and more flexibility to work from where you want, these challenges are not diminishing. In fast-growing startups doubling the headcount every year neither helps it, even if getting new and existing employees on the same page is critical to keep the momentum.

Once a company reaches a certain scale – say hundreds of employees working in multiple countries, teams, and time zones – it needs to start organizing its internal information in one way or another. Enter the world of intranets.

It is safe to say that “Intranet” as a word has a slightly negative connotation. Ironically, a company with an intranet is almost synonymous with things most likely are not in place there. In essence, an intranet can be anything (and all) of a collection of internal sites with guides, processes, information on the company, a social platform to share news and updates on company matters, the online location of files, and the list goes on. Any platform attempting to provide all the solutions mentioned is up for a challenge.

When we started looking at Happeo, we had some reservations. As it turns out, they are the same reasons that got us excited about partnering with them!

A modern-day intranet for fast-growing companies  

To call Happeo an intranet is not doing it a lot of justice. The company provides a solution for teams using either Google Workspace or Microsoft to set up and integrate a modern intranet for your whole team in a matter of minutes. With Happeo, teams can combine their intranet sites with employee communication and collaboration tools. This allows every employee a chance to stay on top of what is happening at the company (and what is relevant for them) and easily collaborate with anyone in the company.

Knowledge sharing as it should be done

As already mentioned, intranets have tended to become not-so-wanted, monolithic platforms inside companies. They fall in the need-to-have category of products, but despite this categorization – or maybe because of it – very little has happened on that front until recent years.

This disruption is what got us excited. As employees are getting more used to great software in their professional and leisure time, not every product makes the cut to stay engaging enough. The Happeo team has built a slick platform that is easy to configure, integrate, and use – and in doing so, gives the power back to the employees instead of the IT-consulting firm that helped the company set up its tools in the first place. After discussing hours with the team and hearing their visions about sharing knowledge in modern companies – it’s easy to believe why Happeo will beat the incumbents.

Team, team, team

Another major factor, as the case always is, is our 100% belief in the founders. We have had the privilege of following Perttu Ojansuu and Antero Hanhirova’s journey for some years already. From successfully founding Gapps to spinning off Happeo after discovering the pains their customers were experiencing, we knew from the get-go we have a great founder-market fit.

At this stage, though, great founders need great people around them. Luckily, from the early days, we got to know the larger team in our conversations as the founders brought in and gave plenty of space, for the responsible team members to shine.

A product that is loved

As an investor, we always take SaaS tools that are not directly the main tools of an employee to one’s work with a pinch of salt. Sometimes the engagement is only so and so, and getting people to use the products requires a significant effort and champions inside the company to drive usage up. Also, as companies tighten their budgets (as the market is telling us now), non-critical tools are the first in line in cost-cutting.

With Happeo, the numbers speak for themselves. Not only do they have compelling engagement numbers with their customers, but their net retention rates also prove that they are providing the solutions to their customers’ pain.

At EGP, we are super happy to be partnering with Happeo together with our co-investors, Endeit Capital and SmartFin Capital, and existing investors such as INKEF, Maki.vc, and Vendep. Alongside us, Rajeev Suri, former CEO of Nokia, and our Growth Partners, Mikko Kuitunen and Ari Korhonen invested in this round. We are honoured of having Mikko Kuitunen, as the Chair of the Board, and can’t wait to support them in any means necessary.  

We are continuously looking for the most beautiful and strongest companies that are to partner with. If you would like to be in touch, please contact us from here. Also, to stay updated, follow us from here.

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