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11/12/2012
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DoubleDutch Gains $4 Million For Social Mobile CRM

Mobile app developer picks up additional funds to pursue its vision of "decomposing" CRM.

The BrainYard's 7 Social Business Leaders Of 2012
The BrainYard's 7 Social Business Leaders Of 2012
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
DoubleDutch, the company behind the mobile app attendees at UBM's E2 Innovate conference will use this week, announced Monday it has picked up an additional $4 million in funding to pursue its vision of social mobile business apps.

DoubleDutch, which achieved its first success with a mobile events app called Flock, also offers Hive for mobile CRM and recently introduced Pride, a mobile enterprise social network.

Lawrence Coburn, founder and CEO of DoubleDutch, said he sees the biggest opportunity in "deconstructing CRM" into a series of focused mobile apps for tasks that salespeople need to perform. He draws a parallel with the way Facebook has introduced separate apps, such as Facebook Messenger, rather than making one mobile app perform all the same functions as the desktop Web version of Facebook.

"It seems like they're trying to chop up Facebook," Coburn said. "We see what's happening on the consumer side as a glimpse into the future for the enterprise."

[ Shared interests are fine for building social communities, but not business communities. See What Enterprise Social Networks Lack: Purpose. ]

CRM software has usually been designed for sales management, not end users, so turning it into an attractive mobile experience that users will adopt tends to be challenging, Coburn said. "Many of these incumbent enterprise software products were built over decades and have hundreds, if not thousands, of features. And feature complexity does not play well with mobile." Hive aims to present a simplified experience for "helping sales guys manage leads and quickly and easily drive them to a close," he said.

DoubleDutch is also developing Flock into more of a specialized social CRM tool, analyzing event attendee interactions to suggest patterns of interest and "predicting demand for as-yet uncreated events," Coburn said. Meanwhile, he plans to develop specialized versions of Pride to support specific activities like customer support and project management.

Coming on top of a previous $2 million round of funding in March, the $4 million in Series B funding is being led by Floodgate Fund and includes Bullpen Capital and Lightbank. Mike Maples Jr., managing partner at Floodgate Fund, will join DoubleDutch's board of directors.

DoubleDutch has been "accidentally profitable" for the past couple of quarters but will use this new funding to more aggressively expand and invest in product development, Coburn said.

Follow David F. Carr on Twitter @davidfcarr. The BrainYard is @thebyard and facebook.com/thebyard

The business world is changing. Is your company ready? E2 Innovate, formerly Enterprise 2.0, is the only event of its kind, bringing strategic business professionals together with industry influencers and next-gen enterprise technologies. Register for E2 Innovate Conference & Expo today and save $200 on current pricing or get a free expo pass. Nov. 12-15, 2012, at the Santa Clara Convention Center, Silicon Valley.

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