Cloud Communication Platform Twilio Raises $12M

Twilio, a cloud communications platform, announced it has raised $12 million in a Series B round led by Bessemer Venture Partners. The San Francisco company allows other developers to build on top of its pay-as-you-go telecommunications platform, creating a wide array of text and phone-based applications.  The beauty of the software-as-a-service platform is that it does all the back-end work so developers can plug in apps using a common set of APIs. More than 20,000 customers have built communications apps on top of Twilio, including Salesforce, Ebay, and Media Temple and start-ups like GroupMe, which recently launched a group text messaging service.

Twilio’s other investors include Union Square Ventures, angel investors and Dave McClure’s 500 Startups, which established a dedicated $250,000 Twilio micro fund in September. Twilio, which will use the money to expand, announced Ty Wang, former senior director of the business communications unit at Oracle, was joining Twilio as its vice president of business development. Byron Deeter from Bessemer will also join the Twilio board. Twilio raised an earlier $3.7 million round last year.

Twilio makes money by charging for phone calls and text messages. That adds to the costs of start-ups but the platform seems to have wide support from developers who are responsive to Twilio’s focus on them.

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