Katana closes $35M Series B round led by VC firm Northzone, with the participation of Lightrock and existing investors Atomico and 42CAP.
Already an industry-leading manufacturing ERP, Katana will continue to move upmarket and expand its feature range to support the more complex needs of SMB manufacturers with omnichannel sales strategies.
Funds will drive extensive product development plans for Katana’s platform approach to building an end-to-end manufacturing ecosystem.
TALLINN, Estonia, October 12, 2022 – Katana, an industry-leading manufacturing ERP software has closed a $35 million Series B round, bringing the total funding to date to $51 million. Funds will be used to scale up Katana’s features for small to medium-sized manufacturers, allowing them to manage D2C and B2B sales in an intuitive, industry-leading software solution.
The investment round is led by global VC firm Northzone, an early investor in Spotify, Personio, and Trustpilot, with the participation of impact-focused growth investor Lightrock, alongside previous investors Atomico and 42CAP. Katana continues to be supported by their angel investors, including Sergei Anikin (former CTO at Pipedrive, also serving as Katana’s Chairman of the Supervisory Board), Sten Tamkivi (Co-founder of NFTPort and former Skype executive), and Ott Kaukver (CTO of Checkout and former CTO of Twilio).
“I am thrilled to welcome investors to our board who share our team’s vision. We’re equally grateful for the continued support of our previous investors and angel investors. From offering software to single-person workshops to bigger and bigger manufacturers over time, Katana now serves over 1300 companies across 80 countries. This investment helps us continue to develop a manufacturing ERP platform customers love, as well as offer support to an under-served market which is having its own incredible renaissance.”, says Kristjan Vilosius, Katana’s Founder and CEO.
“We’ve been deeply impressed with Kristjan and the team, who combine strong product skills, essential to building something as complicated and powerful as a basic ERP system, with commercial savviness and drive. We believe this unlocks the next category in modern-day, modular, user-friendly software, and has the potential to be a defining business in that category” adds Michiel Kotting, a partner at Northzone, also joining Katana’s board.
The end of the ‘Made in China’ era
As the ‘Made in China’ era of manufacturing ends, manufacturers are moving closer to consumers, selling directly via their own websites or online marketplaces — often in tandem with a B2B strategy. Consumers are offered a wealth of choice and opt for brands that align more closely with their personal values, with a trend in choosing sustainable, ethically made, or organic products over mass-produced options. There is a rise in D2C manufacturing, resulting in a wave of new-generation manufacturers looking for software that helps them manage their business holistically, connecting all the facets of their business beyond inventory management.
Most traditional business suites for manufacturing are yet to catch up with today’s usability standards, proving a barrier as they lack modern API functionality and generally do not integrate well with business essentials like e-commerce stores, accounting platforms, and shipping operators. As a result, the ERP space is known for poor UX/UI and low customer satisfaction. Katana’s integration-led approach gives manufacturers an ecosystem of tools and features as opposed to the traditionally siloed, monolithic enterprise solution. By bringing manufacturing software into the digital era and matching the standards of consumer technology and other SaaS verticals, Katana is already named an industry leader in the manufacturing software space by Gartner and is consistently top-ranked in support and ease of use by customers.
Since closing Series A in 2021, Katana launched an open API, app marketplace, and over 60 integrations and feature releases, laying the foundation for the next stage of Katana’s evolution. With Series B funding secured, Katana will continue to develop its plug-and-play platform approach by introducing more advanced accounting integrations and more world-class software services to an increasingly extensive app marketplace.
To support these plans, Katana continues to expand its international team, which increased from 30 to over 140 since the close of Series A. Introducing new product development teams will amp up feature releases while expanding customer support teams globally will ensure that stellar customer satisfaction continues to be a key differentiator as Katana serves new markets and larger customers.
Founded in 2017, Katana offers everything companies need to keep manufacturing, uniting all the processes, tools, and software manufacturers require with an intuitive and easy-to-use ERP. Global from day one, Katana’s portfolio of over 1300 companies ranges from hobby makers to multi-million dollar manufacturing businesses. To date, Katana’s founding team has raised over $51 million in funding from VC firms and angel investors and scaled its team of six to 140 employees across North America, Europe, Asia, and Oceania.
Northzone is an early stage venture capital fund built on experience spanning multiple economic and disruptive technology cycles. In 2022, Northzone announced their tenth fundraise of €1bn to invest from seed to pre IPO startups. Founded in 1996, it has invested in the likes of Personio, Wagestream, Truelayer, iZettle, Northzone is one of the most experienced venture capital funds in Europe, with offices in London, New York, Stockholm, Amsterdam and Oslo.