When Celonis, an 11-year-old German process mining company, announced a $1 billion raise in August on a $13.2 billion post-money valuation, it was a bit of a shock. After all, VC firms were pulling back from the huge raises and gaudy valuations of yesteryear.
But Celonis — which has raised $2.4 billion, per Crunchbase, with $2 billion coming in the last year alone — has been able to defy the current thinking in startup circles by taking on huge chunks of capital.
Consider that its valuation has grown an eye-popping 420% since 2019, when it raised $290 million at a $2.5 billion valuation. That was followed last year with $1 billion at an $11 billion valuation, culminating in August’s $13 billion valuation.
Part of the reason it’s such a valuable company is that along the way, it’s forged partnerships with corporate giants like IBM and ServiceNow to sell its software, helping push Celonis into markets where even well-funded startups might be limited by the resource requirements.
It’s also been able to fill in the platform with several strategic acquisitions (more on that later).
Why are customers, investors, and partners so interested in Celonis?
Because Celonis, using software, can dig into the way processes move through a company, looking at complex areas like procurement, bill paying, and inventory and searching for inefficiencies and duplications that can ultimately add up to huge savings.
This is the kind of work that high-priced consultants have tended to do, camping inside companies for months or years and figuring out how work flows through the organization while collecting fat checks to do it.
Having software that can replace those human efficiency experts, and in fairly short order, is a tremendous advantage.