Enterprises and large- and medium-sized businesses are adopting – and offering – software-as-a-service platforms as they strive to increase their revenue and translate their growth into greater efficiency. Now a new startup, Emitrr, is aiming to bring the benefits of this model to small and local businesses in the U.S. Emitrr claims to help small businesses by automating tasks such as appointment reminders and review generations. On Tuesday, the startup, led by two Indian co-founders, announced it raised $4 million in a pre-Series A round to expand its automation solution in the US market.
Bengaluru-based Chiratae Ventures led Emitrr’s funding round, which also saw participation from Venture Highway, FortyTwo VC and Axilor Ventures.
“We’re essentially a business text messaging software and automation software for local businesses in the US,” said Anmol Oberoi, founder of Emitrr, in an interview with TechCrunch.
Emitrr, founded by Oberoi and his partner Pulkit Gambhir in December 2020, claims over 150 local businesses in the US use its platform. These businesses range from single-location healthcare practices to multi-location home service companies. The startup also has some small business customers in Australia and Canada.
The Delaware-based startup is catering to global markets and has no customers in India, but employs a team of 25 people — most of whom work remotely from second- and third-tier cities — in the South Asian market.
Emitrr works with over a thousand vertical CRM platforms that local companies often use to solve customer management operations. Oberoi said that Emitrr has so far built seven to eight different automation models that run on top of the short message service (SMS).
Local health care centers, dentists, and home care providers can use these automation models to send their customers appointment reminders and follow-up services for comments and reviews. Oberoi told TechCrunch that while Emitrr is heavily targeting healthcare and home services, it has started getting customers from real estate, salons, restaurants and various other verticals.
It is remarkable that Emitrr is using traditional text messages through WhatsApp for her tasks. Oberoi said people in many markets, including the US, Australia and Canada, still prefer to use SMS over any third-party offering, but added that it’s possible the startup could quickly adopt WhatsApp or another messaging service. instantly on the platform.
“Our platform can be used by any local business in the world,” he said. “We automate the tasks performed by the receptionist who sits in the dental office and the front desk manager who sits in the restaurant.”
Since Emitrr sends and receives messages to customers directly from businesses, it often processes sensitive information. Oberoi said there is system-wide encryption to ensure the safety and security of the data the platform processes.
“Both our incoming and outgoing text messages are fully encrypted,” he said. The Company also complies with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) to protect sensitive patient health information from disclosure without the patient’s consent or knowledge.
“We have a single-tenant architecture, so if a compromise happens, even then, the compromise will only happen to one customer — not the hundreds of customers that we have,” Oberoi said.
Emitrr is not just in selling business communication automation platforms. Companies including Weave and Podium operate in the same space and are targeting small businesses.
Oberoi claimed that Emitrr has a cost advantage over the competition and can identify many problems that its main competitors are not solving in the market. “Mostly, it’s the product and support that we can get customers away from Weave and Podium,” he said.
With the new funding, Emitrr is planning to deepen the platform to expand the range of automation and solve 15 to 20 problems for small businesses. It also aims to double down on its move to enter the market.
“Pulkit and Anmol bring deep domain knowledge and we are happy to partner with them on their growth journey to build and deliver solutions with practical use cases and real-world applicability,” said Venkatesh Peddi, Managing Director and Partner, Chiratae Ventures, in a statement. .
Before the new round, Emitrr had raised about $495,000 from Venture Highway, Axilor Ventures and several angel investors.
“Small, local businesses like your local dentist or salon, in the US and around the world have a number of unique challenges, including no or very little digitization of customer-facing workflows,” said Samir Sood, Founding Partner , Venture Highway. . “The ability to maintain high service standards in conditions with little or no human touch, against the background of expensive labor, is a key problem waiting to be solved. The founders have unique insights into the space and a clear vision of how to produce the entire customer-facing journey and elevate the customer experience for these businesses — Emitrr is building a ‘go-to’ solution,” said Sood.