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Smart home as-a-service company Plume reaches ‘unicorn’ status

by Louis Stone
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The business focuses on the needs of CSPs

California-based Plume has raised $270 million in a Series E funding round that values it at $1.35 billion.

The company offers a software-as-a-service platform for communications service providers, which is designed for connected 'smart' homes.

The entire round came from a single source, venture capital and private equity firm Insight Partners.

Welcome to the club

For smart home users, Plume HomePass helps optimize WiFi connections, offers parental controls, improves cyber security, and brings together output from IoT devices, including motion sensors.

Meanwhile, Plume Haystack and Harvest give CSPs a back-end service to provide support, and gather data. This includes analytics, consumer behavior and satisfaction insights, churn prediction, and retention marketing services.

Plume has partnered with more than 170 CSPs to date, placing HomePass in more than 22 million households around the world.

"By leveraging machine learning and AI, cloud data, open-source, deep ecosystem partnerships, and a scalable platform, we uniquely address the disconnect between the expectations of smart spaces and the service provider's ability to deliver flawless experiences to them – while building a leading, high-growth SaaS business in a large, under-served market,” Fahri Diner, co-founder and CEO of Plume, said.

“An even stronger balance sheet through this cash infusion, coupled with our high operating leverage, sets the stage for Plume to continue to invest confidently in our future."

The company said it would expand its R&D investment, and also grow sales and marketing "aggressively." All of its offices across North America, Europe, and Asia are expected to expand.

"Growth in the smart home category is exploding, but the quality of consumer experience has fallen short," said Ryan Hinkle, MD at Insight Partners appointed to Plume's board as part of the deal.

"We are convinced that Plume, with its scalable cloud data platform approach, highly efficient go-to-market strategy, strong momentum, top-quartile financial performance across all SaaS KPIs – including revenue, growth rates, gross margin, efficiency and retention metrics – and world-class team is transforming this category.”

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