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Melbourne startup Culture Amp just raised a $US20 million series C round

Culture Amp’s Didier Elzinga (holding mic) at the HR Tech conference in San Francisco. (Source: supplied)

Australian human resources tech company Culture Amp announced overnight that it had secured $US20 million in new capital in a series C round.

Culture Amp founder and chief Didier Elzinga announced the capital raising round at the HR Tech conference in San Francisco, revealing that Californian firm Sapphire Ventures was the lead investor.

Sapphire principal Kevin Diestel will join the board of the Melbourne startup, which makes software that helps businesses collect and analyse feedback from its employees.

“For me, this round of funding is validation. Not so much validation for myself or my co-founders, but validation of our vision,” said Didier Elzinga on the company blog.

“We’re not perfect — no organisation is. But we’ve been committed to putting culture first in our decisions, and what we’ve built is something to be proud of. We want to make the world a better place to work, and we’re proving that good workplace culture is good business.”

Existing investors Index Ventures, Felicis Ventures and Australia’s Blackbird Ventures also joined the latest round, which Elzinga said would help it expand internationally.

“The funding means we can grow our Culture Amp team across Melbourne, San Francisco, New York and London… We’ll grow our global People Geek community, which is already over 40,000 members strong,” he said.

Diestel said Sapphire was compelled to invest in Culture Amp because it saw that many businesses internationally talked a lot about how people are the most important resource, yet hadn’t yet backed up that rhetoric with action.

“Employers have been saying this for centuries, yet the everyday employee is often forgotten in conversations on improving the underlying structure and culture of an organisation,” he said.

“This phenomenon, and the associated lag in HR software adoption, has perplexed us for quite some time, particularly when it comes to solutions that directly relate to the employee experience. If the most important resource to your business isn’t happy, why not do something about it?”

Culture Amp raised a $US6.3 million series A round in March 2015, a $US10 million in series B in March 2016 and March this year moved its headquarters into its own building at Queen St in Melbourne.

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