When Slack first launched in 2013, it didn’t take too long to set a new record as the fastest-ever startup to achieve a $US1 billion valuation.
From there, the work chat startup kept growing and growing: Just this past summer, Slack raised a monster $US250 million funding round at a $US5 billion valuation, essentially putting the kibosh on rumours that Amazon was looking to buy it up. Slack’s success has sparked renewed competition from Microsoft and Aussie software giant Atlassian.
Today, at its first-ever Slack Frontiers user conference in San Francisco, the company shared a few updates on its business — our first look at Slack’s performance since the last time it released some of these numbers in January 2017.
Slack now claims:
- Over 9 million weekly active users, up from the 6.8 million it reported in January.
- Over 6 million daily active users, up from 5 million in January.
- 50,000 paid teams, with 2 million paid users, up from 38,000 and 1.5 million, respectively. Slack now says it has a toehold in 43% of the Fortune 100.
- Annual recurring revenue (ARR) of $US200 million, an extrapolation of how much money it will make in any given 12 months based on its current performance. That’s up from the $US150 million ARR it reported earlier this year.
In other words, Slack is still showing strong growth, but perhaps not at the lightning-fast clip of its earliest days. That’s to be expected as a startup grows up, though.
Slack also announced Shared Channels, a new feature to let users operate chat rooms that can be populated with internal staff and outside guests. Companies like fashion brand Everlane are using it to bring its shipping contractors closer into the process, says Slack. Also, Slack is now available in French, German, and Spanish, with Japanese coming soon, to meet what it says is large international demand.
Meanwhile, the last week has seen both Microsoft and $US8 billion Atlassian draw their respective lines in the sand in these chat wars with Slack.
Atlassian launched Stride, the successor to HipChat, its popular work chat app that’s especially beloved by programmers. And Microsoft is doubling down on the appeal of its Microsoft Teams app to the IT department at larger companies with a security-minded guest access feature.
Coming into the Slack Frontiers event, though, the $US5 billion startup doesn’t seem worried. Instead, Slack sees itself as the leaders in the work chat space, and these updates “extend our lead,” VP of Product April Underwood tells Business Insider.
“We’ve known for some time that eventually everyone will be using Slack or something like it, so the new products on the market further support that conviction,” says Underwood. “We build Slack to meet teams where they are – it’s highly flexible and configurable to meet the unique needs of any organisation. “
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