Why UpWest Invested in Mobilize

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Today’s constantly changing networked economy forces businesses to reevaluate how they manage their myriad complex stakeholder relationships. Sharon Savariego, CEO of Mobilize, along with co-founder Arthur Vainer and the rest of the Mobilize team, noticed this trend and set out on a mission to create an enterprise platform to help companies build impactful relationships across all stakeholders. Mobilize envisions successful businesses continuously “mobilizing” their stakeholders through a seamless, intuitive and action-oriented communications platform.  So what positioned the Mobilize team to uniquely crack the code and turn their vision into reality? They went “all in.” They didn’t cut any corners when it came to networking, hiring and listening to customers.

Sharon was familiar with the collaboration pains of businesses who have a diverse range of stakeholders in today’s sharing economy, such as volunteers, employees, partners, etc. From the beginning, she was committed to solving the problem at hand. As soon as she and her team arrived in the US from Tel Aviv, they surrounded themselves with experts and investors who could provide invaluable industry insights on building a sound Saas business and who would introduce them to successful global companies that could benefit from the Mobilize solution. Building these connections helped accelerate Sharon’s access into diverse industries and secure clients that eventually shaped the product and provided the needed credibility in the market.

From the get-go, Sharon’s “ear to the ground” approach paid off. Making a point of being close to the market and listening to her customers’ needs led this driven CEO to identify a larger opportunity and expand the Mobilize platform beyond her initial target market. What started as a solution to help nonprofits work more effectively with massive amounts of volunteers transformed into a universal platform used by large corporations to help them manage a variety of stakeholders. As she progressed with a wider target market, she came to know intimately the challenges of fast-growing tech companies in the sharing economy category, such as Lyft, Etsy and TaskRabbit who experienced bottlenecks in managing their expansive external “workforce” and mobilizing their vendors. Her daily interactions with large tech giants brought to her attention the incredible opportunity in building the Mobilize solution. For example, she imagined the potential for companies to mobilize their “developer groups” or multinational organizations with massive alumni networks spread across the world by communicating in a more engaging and personalized way.

In order to execute these insights, Sharon and Arthur needed to build a product and customer-oriented development team with technical expertise and agility. Arthur’s vast tech network in Israel allowed the team to quickly hire top engineers. As the CEO, Sharon accomplished super-human feats of being in both places (US & Israel) seamlessly. She knew the importance of both spearheading the business aspects in the US as well as educating and motivating the development team to create the best possible product. With her insights, the team was able to execute and iterate quickly to build a product for the customers and not just develop a product to bring to the market.

Very quickly Sharon also understood the key to success was to bring on local talent in the US quickly. Many CEOs make the rookie mistake of trying to do everything themselves. Sharon was on a mission to build a big company in the US and, therefore, needed a seasoned team that knew how to do exactly that in marketing and customer success. Within a few months of establishing the US entity, Sharon onboarded strong players to run these critical customer acquisition and support efforts.

The Mobilize team’s focus on building an impactful network, listening to customers, and strategic hiring has proven successful as they move into their next phase driven by their Series A investment round led by Trinity Ventures and Hillsven. UpWest Labs was one of the first investors in Mobilize and we will continue to support the company through their next growth phases. We look forward to following their success in transforming how global companies manage relationships and drive impact in today’s new networked economy.

 

 

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