Fuzebox, a cloud-based visual communications, conferencing and VoIP service, is getting an infusion of cash and a makeover to boot. The company has announced a $26 million Series B follow-on led by Hermes Growth Partners, after raising a $20 million Series A last July. In addition, Fuzebox has also hired several high-level employees with past experience at Yammer, including a new CEO: David Obrand. The money and staff will help the company transition to a freemium model, which opens the product to individuals and small businesses.
Founded in 2009, Fuzebox offers digital conferencing, video and VoIP services to companies at the enterprise level and above — some of its clients include Ogilvy, Evernote, and GM. The company directly competes with Cisco and GoToMeeting, providing screen and content sharing as well as high-definition video conferencing feeds. Their cloud-powered technology works across multiple platforms, including Android and Apple products. And in 2012, it announced HD support for conferencing on the retina iPad.
The round will help the company expand into Europe as well as implement a new design and features for the new business model.
“We are investing heavily in recruiting as we build out our engineering and product organization as well as our customer service organization,” Obrand said.
The new CEO is joined by former Yammer executives Mary Pecka, who becomes chief customer officer, Georg Ell, who becomes vice president and general manager, EMEA, as well as Jonathan Grant, who is the new VP of finance. Obrand said that the team is focused on adopting a freemium model for Fuzebox’s services, offering users free VoIP calling over WiFi and 60 days of access to the company’s U.S. toll-numbers.
“In our sector, web conferencing, it’s been served with decades-old architectures,” Obrand says. “If we think about the dynamics we’ve seen over the pas years — whether you call it BYOD or BYOA — users are hungry for technology that they can self-discover.”
From there, companies can select the Pro membership, which makes the toll-numbers a permanent fixture, for $8 per user per month or the Enterprise membership, which facilitates international calling, for $20 per user per month. Obrand said that all users will have access to Fuzebox’s proprietary analytics platform — although the depth of data will depend on the subscription.