ExactTarget Wins $70 Million to Support Products and Overseas Growth

E-mail marketing company ExactTarget has secured $70 million in venture capital funding. The money further delays plans for an IPO, but gives the company the funds it says it needs to service the global interest of its clients.

ExactTarget will use the investment to reinforce its U.S. offices, but also to open offices internationally. The money will also support product development and, possibly, acquisitions. “All of our growth to date has been organic; we have yet to do an acquisition,” ExactTarget CEO Scott Dorsey told ClickZ. “We will selectively look at acquisitions that fit with our longer term vision.”

Indianapolis-based ExactTarget has 420 employees, up from about 380 at the beginning of the year. Dorsey said it expects to finish the year with a head count above 550. “The next phase for us will be opening more offices around the country. We already have a presence where our enterprise customers exist,” said Dorsey. He added the company expects to announce its first international office within the next 30 days.

The hosted e-mail service provider boasts clients such as HomeDepot, CareerBuilder.com, Papa Johns, WellPoint, and Gannett. In Q1 it added 250 new clients, among them Pier 1 Imports, SkyMall, and Minneapolis Star Tribune. The company hopes to serve its multinational clients with regional offices around the globe.

A portion of the funding will go to product development for both small- to mid-sized business and large enterprise clients. In addition to e-mail, ExactTarget now offers SMS, voice, landing pages, and social network communities. “[This] allows us to build more depth,” Dorsey said.

The investment was led by Battery Ventures. Silicon Valley’s Scale Venture Partners also contributed, and Montagu Newhall joined the round as a repeat investor. The $70 million round delayed plans for an initial public offering filed back in December 2007. While ExactTarget was actively seeking funds, it has been profitable for three years.

“We’ve had 33 consecutive quarters of revenue growth, and 13 consecutive quarters of profitability,” said Dorsey. “We have bigger ambitions, to help build out our global footprint. It’s really about our ambition and a bigger vision, and one-to-one marketing technology.”

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