Formstack landed $425 million and went quietly back to work
When news of Formstack’s jaw-dropping $425 million capital raise hit the news cycle last Thursday, it understandably set Indiana’s tech ecosystem abuzz.
The investment led by Silversmith Capital Partners and returning investor PSG is by far the state’s largest tech capital raise in history. It came on the heels of two other triple-digit investments (Greenlight Guru and OnBoard) which were in the record-setting realm themselves in June and July when they announced capital raises of $120 million and $100 million respectively. Terminus kicked the year off with a $90 million raise in February.
While its capital raise was larger than the three earlier record capital raises combined, the Formstack announcement was relatively low-key.
“We’re in the workplace productivity business. We’re extremely practical,” explained Kathryn Loheide, Formstack’s Senior Vice President of Marketing.
Pressed to talk about what the massive investment means for Indiana as a tech hub, she admits that the company has “so much pride for the state and how we can support the state economy. It’s great validation of the tech ecosystem here in Indianapolis and of mid-sized companies,” she said.
Mike Langellier, TechPoint’s CEO, welcomed the validation of Indiana’s tech ecosystem as well as attention for Indiana’s plethora of later-stage scale-up ready tech companies.
“Investment like this was unheard of only a few years ago,” he said. “That we’re seeing not just one but four companies this year with $90 million or more investment announcements is amazing and reinforces the emergence of this tech hub. It also speaks to a big vision by company executives to build a market leading major employer here.”
The rise of “no-code” business tools
Formstack is no overnight success.
Launched in 2006, the company is a pioneer in the “no-code” movement and has remained focused on it ever since, offering continually innovative workplace productivity tools. As its name implies, Formstack’s product offerings began with forms, then expanded to data collection, document generation and electronic signatures–all tools that enable non-technically trained employees to accomplish business tasks easily and efficiently.
Attention to client demand helped the Fishers-headquartered company carve out its own corner of the Indiana tech ecosystem and grow steadily for the past 15 years. The pandemic increased client demand for ways to take care of their own IT issues.
In a blog post announcing the investment, CEO Chris Byers wrote, “This investment is proof that the no-code movement is not a fad; it’s here to stay to empower employees all over the world. Building for the non-technical employee is why we started 15 years ago, and that still inspires the work we do today. We want to make it as simple as possible to streamline workflows and eliminate paper for good. We’re building a product that can meet your immediate needs—digitizing and automating business processes—but also scale to help meet your larger, multi-year digital transformation needs,” he wrote.
Formstack also pioneered “remote first” work. They have more than 250 employees scattered across the globe and have been “remote first” since 2012.
The pandemic helped increase demand for Formstack’s suite of products, which have been expanded by a series of strategic acquisitions.
Kathryn said the company expects to use its investment to continue that strategy of acquiring companies that help further Formstack’s portfolio of digital tools. Employee growth will also occur both here and abroad as the company works to increase its brand awareness and grow its clients on an international scale.