Ekos, a Charlotte, N.C. start-up that develops software to assist craft breweries and other beverage business arrange their services, announced an $8 million Series A today led by Noro-Moseley Partners, an Atlanta endeavor firm.
Prior to taking this financing, the company had actually bootstrapped for the previous 5 years, developing a company with 1,700 consumers in 40 countries. The business has actually developed a whole suite of tools to track whatever from what’s in the tank to recipes, raw materials, inventory and so on– everything you require to run a brewery, cidery or wine-making company.
Prior to launching the business in 2014, the founders were considering developing software for this market specific niche, so they went around and asked makers what they were utilizing to track their organisations. Some were simply tracking it by hand using clipboards and white boards. Others were utilizing ERP software like SAP, NetSuite or Microsoft Characteristics. Some were using Google Sheets.
McKinney said he couldn’t believe there wasn’t a set of tools specifically geared for this market, so he and co-founder and CTO Greg Forehand did what any great business owners would do: They constructed it. Today’s item includes an app to track business on a mobile phone, and the ability to establish a drag and drop workflow for the whole operation.
He states he and Forehand in fact created the company idea independently. He ended up being aware of Forehand in an early sales call. It was certainly odd that 2 individuals in the very same city developed the same concept at the exact same time. Ultimately the two fulfilled and decided to join forces and form a service together.
It turned out to be a great choice. Upon launching in 2014, business removed instantly. They got covered in a developing industry publication, Brewbound, which helped spread out the message. By the end of the very first year they had 100 breweries on the platform. He stated that word likewise spread out by word of mouth, and although they prepared to focus on the U.S. market for beginners, prior to they understood it they were getting calls from breweries in Canada, New Zealand and Australia. Today he states they have consumers practically any place there is a brewery across 40 nations.
The company presently has 32 staff members, consisting of simply 2 sales people, who likewise help the consumers with initial setup for their specific requirements. They have broadened from beer to cider to red wine, and in time they wish to expand into other food and alcohol markets.
McKinney has huge prepare for the cash. He wants to work with 40 new staff members by the end of 2020, including sales and marketing folks, in addition to software application engineers. He states he recognizes that this will be a big change for his little operation, however it’s something they have actually been preparing for and talking about over the last eight months as they went through the process to find financing.
” I think extremely much in being transparent with our team internally, so that nothing is truly a surprise. Our team is quite pumped about the opportunity for our customers and the important things we’re going to construct, and likewise getting some brand-new employee in place,” he stated.