With $60 million funding round, Ivalua reaches ‘unicorn’ status of $1 billion valuation

Ivalua Founder and CEO David Khuat-Duy speaks at the Ivalua NOW customer event in Chicago on April 30, 2019. (Ivalua photo)

Ivalua, likely the fastest growing privately held source-to-pay procurement suite technology provider, announced Tuesday morning that, with its latest funding round, it has gained “unicorn” status for start-ups by reaching $1 billion in valuation.

It raised $60 million from a new investor, Tiger Global Management, and Ardian Growth, one of Ivalua’s early investors that raised its investment level. Tiger Global joins Ivalua’s founders, KKR and Ardian as shareholders, the announcement said.

“Ivalua’s management retains a majority stake in the company to ensure stable, long-term planning and a continued focus on customers,” the announcement said.

Ivalua is known for its spend management solution, which can help businesses improve the efficiency of their procurement operations, saving them money and setting the stage for strategic growth. The overall market for spend management is deemed to be more than $20 billion, the announcement said.

The company also recently announced that it is on pace to exceed $100 million in annual revenue in 2019.

David Khuat-Duy, Ivalua’s CEO and founder, appreciated that the new funding provides support for the company’s long-term strategy and business model.

“This additional capital will allow us to deliver ever more value to our customers and secure future growth,” he said in Tuesday’s announcement, which also said the investment will fuel product innovation, global business growth and, possibly, strategic acquisitions.

The move is important for the market and Ivalua’s future, said Jason Busch, the founder of Spend Matters and Azul Partners’ managing director of strategic and transactional advisory.

“As Ivalua fortifies its balance sheet, we expect it to become more aggressive in terms of both organic R&D — in such areas as contract management, financing/payment and services procurement — and inorganic expansion,” Busch said. “But just as important is that the founders and management team have no intention of giving up control of their vision and the path to execute it on their own terms and own timeline.”

At an April customer event in Chicago called Ivalua NOW, Khuat-Duy said the company has big plans.

“We have this long-term strategy of building a very big company with a fantastic product that we can offer to the market. And this is our vision,” Khuat-Duy said. “We don't have a short-term vision, like exiting or doing something different. We have this ambitious vision.”

After the Chicago conference, Spend Matters Chief Research Officer Pierre Mitchell deemed Ivalua to be “the next procurement megavendor to step out of the shadows.”

“Ivalua will be the next break-out vendor, following on the heels of SAP Ariba and Coupa (on a software/SaaS revenue basis, at least),” Mitchell wrote.

“Ivalua is like the tortoise in the race with the hare, but in this case, the tortoise has been putting on roller-skates and building a jet pack into its upgraded shell (161 upgrades to be exact).”

A Spend Matters SolutionMap analysis of Ivalua this year said the source-to-pay provider, until recently, “has not gotten the attention its capabilities would suggest it deserves on the global stage.”

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