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Four months after securing R2.5-million in seed funding from Cape Town-based investment fund Getihu, Hi5 CEO and founder Gary Willmott claims the startup is adding an average of between 20 and 40 new clients monthly.
“We are just about to go over the the 6000-user mark and have just hit a milestone for the 10 000th Hi5,” says Willmott (pictured above), who platform allows staff in workplaces to rate one another.
He says the R2.5-million investment deal — which was concluded in March for a 25% stake in the startup — will enable the platform to “scale product and business development within South Africa and the region over 18 months”.
“The funding will be used to grow our sales team, further develop the platform based on ongoing client feedback and improve overall user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) as we get ready for global scale,” he explains.
Hi5’s March R2.5-million seed funding round with Getihu involved 25% equity
The monthly growth in Hi5’s client base has necessitated the need for the startup to “constantly grow” its team. He says Hi5 currently employs “under 10 people” and is looking to expand to 20 by the end of 2018.
“We are hiring, having recently bought in our first SDR (sales development representative – Ed) we will be looking to add one more in the coming months. We are also looking for customer success, senior engineers and marketers that will fit with in our very unique culture,” he says.
He added that the startup also plans to start a internship programme for young software developers.
He advises other B2B software-as-a-service (SaaS) startups looking to tap into Getihu’s fund to not “arrive with your Silicon Valley pre-conceived ideas of running a startup”.
“Get ready to be challenged on all your thinking on an ongoing basis and have the data and facts to back-up any fluffy ideas you might have,” he says.
Says Willmott: “With that said, they add incredible value on a continual basis. I don’t seem them as investors but more as partners that I can call on for anything”.
Featured image: Hi5 founder Gary Willmott
Editor’s note (19 June 2018) Hi5 is taking applications for available vacancies here.