Series A to Unicorn – The Efficient Path to $1B

Phenom Raises $100M Series D

We are very excited to announce Phenom’s $100M Series D and their officially joining the Unicorn Club! We are grateful to have had the opportunity to work with the entire Phenom team starting at their Series A, and we continue to see a bright future for the company.

In late 2015, we were introduced to a company called iMomentous that had just begun its transformation into what is now Phenom. The company was in the midst of a fantastic year and was in the process of launching a new product and establishing a category. From our first call it was clear that the founders (and brothers) of Phenom, Mahe Bayireddi and Hari Bayireddy, were a special team and had a clear vision for building a big company. 

Screenshot from Fireside chat with Mahe Bayireddi and Hari Bayireddy from Phenom and Tim Guleri and Vignesh Ravikumar from Sierra Ventures

Over the years of working with them, the team has consistently delivered world-class execution and with this fundraise, they will continue accelerating towards their goal to fill One Billion Jobs globally. They are well on their way to reaching this goal as the platform was adopted by 25,000 recruiters, talent marketers and hiring managers — helping them hire over 2 million people and engage over 3 million employees in 2020 alone.

Mahe and Hari’s entrepreneurial spirit has always stood out to us. When the brothers were just 12 years old, they ran their family’s pharmacy and their father instilled in them early on that they would be the ones providing others with jobs. This passion and vision has continued throughout the founding and building of Phenom, and ultimately, we believe the combination of the team’s vision and Sierra’s history of helping scale early-stage businesses has helped the company build the foundation for this next phase of growth.

Some key traits that have gotten the company to this point: 

  • Strong understanding of what customers want and delivering on customer value
  • Ability to continuously drive up average deal sizes through strong product management
  • Exceptional cash efficiency that has allowed the company to reach unicorn status while burning less than 20% of the capital raised

With this round, we are excited for the company to accelerate its trajectory as hiring becomes a key C-Suite initiative post-COVID. The company is already used by 10% of the Fortune 500 and Phenom will become the dominant player in the coming years. We believe that any company that is a leader in its field needs Phenom to ensure they attract, hire, and retain the best talent. As Mahe says, the war for talent is on and Phenom has fundamentally transformed the way companies acquire talent. 

Phenom has cemented itself as the leader in the Talent Experience Management (TXM) Category and the company is positioned to capture this massive market and become a dominant software business.

Check out our Fireside Chat with Mahe and Hari.

Read the press release about Phenom’s $100M Series D.

Tim is a former serial entrepreneur, having built two successful software infrastructure companies: Scopus Technology (IPO in 1995) and Octane Software (M&A – Epiphany $3.2 billion). He joined Sierra Ventures as Managing Director in 2002 and focuses on Big Data and Artificial Intelligence. Since joining, he has taken two companies public (Sourcefire – FIRE and MakeMyTrip – MMYT), and has been responsible for several M&As. Tim holds a BA in Electrical Engineering from PEC University of Technology (India) and an MS in IEOR/Robotics from Virginia Tech. His passion (outside of his family and companies) is soccer.

Vignesh joined Sierra Ventures in 2013 and focuses on SaaS and Vertical Apps. Vignesh has a background in M&A transactions for enterprise software companies, having worked at AGC Partners, a Boston-based investment bank. Vignesh holds a BS in Management Science (cum laude) and a Minor in Math from UC San Diego. Outside of work, he is an avid golfer and a big Golden State Warriors fan. Go Dubs!

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