Otter.ai, an AI Productivity App, Raises $50 Million in Funding

By Bruce Harpham Thursday, March 11, 2021

Evernote and Notion have a new competitor in the note-taking app industry: Otter.ai. The startup business has raised $50 million in funding from investors this year. The company also helps business users save time by transcribing meetings. In fact, the AI business has processed more than three billion minutes of meetings. Revenue at the startup has exploded as the pandemic has virtually eliminated in-person meetings. The business reports increasing revenue by 800% in 2020.

Otter.ai app features on a smartphone.

Company Receives Funding From Multiple Investors

The AI app business has received support from several investors. Horizons Ventures, Draper Associates, GGV Capital, and Draper Dragon Fund have all invested in the AI company. Investor interest in the business extends beyond funding. John Connolly, the Managing Director of Spectrum Equity, plans to join the company Board of Directors.

Spectrum Equity, based in Boston, has $1.5 billion in assets. The fund has invested in Headspace (a meditation app company), Kajabi (an online course business), and Origami Risk (a cloud-based risk management company). Horizon Ventures, operating out of Hong Kong, has invested in more than forty companies in the United States (US), such as Atomo Coffee (a molecular coffee company that leveraged Kickstarter for growth) and Tempo AI (an AI app company for calendar management which Salesforce acquired).

Integrations Fuel Growth at the Startup

Business users interested in Otter.ai have a reduced learning curve thanks to integrations. The business has created integrations with multiple popular messaging and communication apps. As of early March, Otter.ai has added integrations with Google Meet and Zoom. As a result, Otter benefits from Zoom’s growing popularity. Additionally, Zoom stated in 2020 that it has recorded up to 300 million daily Zoom meeting participants.

The Business Customers Using Otter.ai

The AI app business has already signed up a significant number of business users. Users include Accenture (a global consulting business with more than 500,000 employees), Columbia University, Tulane University, Dropbox, IBM, and Zoom.

Otter.ai has More than Business Users

Similar to Zoom, Otter.ai serves multiple types of users. The company has an offering for the education sector focused on the needs of higher education. In education, Otter.ai is used for both transcribing lectures and transcribing research interviews. Furthermore, the business also offers a free plan with two feature limitations (i.e., a maximum of 600 minutes of transcription per month).

The AI Company Is Hiring

The AI app business plans to grow its workforce substantially. As of March 2021, the company has open job positions in engineering, sales, marketing, and design. Otter.ai plans to triple the size of its workforce over the coming year, focusing on AI talent. The Mountain View California-based company currently has forty employees, according to LinkedIn.

Growing With Tech Events

Otter.ai has grown its profile in the technology industry by participating in events. The startup business has participated in Web Summit 2019 and TechCrunch Disrupt Berlin 2019. Participating in these events is a proven way to attract interest from investors and other technology companies.

About the Author


Headshot of Bruce Harpham

Bruce Harpham is an author and marketing consultant based in Canada. His first book, "Project Managers At Work," shared real-world success lessons from NASA, Google, and other organizations. His articles have been published in CIO.com, InfoWorld, Canadian Business, and other organizations. Visit BruceHarpham.com for articles, interviews with tech leaders, and updates on future books.

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