Clutch just raised another $5M from Safeguard Scientifics - Technical.ly Philly

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May 26, 2015 12:37 pm

Clutch just raised another $5M from Safeguard Scientifics

The Ambler, Pa., tech company, focused on consumer engagement for brands, has raised a total of $14.4 million — ditching the consumer market in favor of B2B in early 2014.
Inside Clutch’s 7,500-square-foot office in the Ambler Boiler House.

Inside Clutch's 7,500-square-foot office in the Ambler Boiler House.

(Courtesy photo)

Clutch just got another infusion of venture capital, thanks to previous investor Safeguard Scientifics. The local venture firm invested $5 million in Clutch, the Ambler-based company whose customer engagement platform is used by brands like Crabtree & Evelyn, Theory and Godiva.

Clutch has raised a total of $14.4 million, including $5.3 million back in 2013, also led by Safeguard. Safeguard has invested a total of $12.3 million in the company, according to a release. Local venture firm NewSpring Capital has also invested in the company, as well as state-backed firm Ben Franklin Technology Partners.

The company will use the money for sales and marketing, according to the release. Clutch currently employs 45, including five developers in Europe, said marketing manager Tyler Walton. That’s up from 35 employees in late 2014.

Clutch's office. (Courtesy photo)

Clutch’s office. LeadiD has an office in the same building. (Courtesy photo)

It’s not surprising that Safeguard is an enthusiastic backer of Clutch. Clutch was cofounded and is run by Ned Moore, who led Safeguard to a reported $38 million exit when Moore sold his company Portico Systems to McKesson for $90 million in 2011.

NewSpring partner Glenn Rieger sits on Clutch’s board, as does Safeguard’s Erik Rasmussen.

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Clutch started out as a consumer-facing app but later pivoted to focus on the B2B market in early 2014 because the consumer shopping app market was crowded, VP of Marketing Mark Harrington said in an interview last year. The company would have needed to raise a a massive amount of capital to compete, he said.

“It’s really hand to hand combat for consumer apps,” said Harrington, whose Philly tech scene history includes Half.com and Ecount. (He helped financial startup Ecount transition to a B2B model back in 2004. The company later exited to Citi.)

During that 2014 interview, Harrington said that Clutch wasn’t looking to raise a ton of money and compete in that space.

“We had the resources to win in the B2B market,” he said.

Harrington is one of a handful of former Half.com staffers working at Clutch, including:

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