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UrbanBound Secures $5M in Series A

2013-08-06
CHICAGO, IL, First web-based relocation platform that provides companies with a comprehensive relocation experience for their newly hired and transferring employees, today announced that it has secured $5 million in venture funding.
UrbanBound, the first web-based relocation platform that provides companies with a comprehensive relocation experience for their newly hired and transferring employees, today announced that it has secured $5 million in venture funding. Early-stage investor Grotech Ventures led the Series A round with participation from experienced SaaS investor StarVest Partners. UrbanBound plans to use the funding for aggressive hiring and continued platform innovation.

With its technology-based approach, UrbanBound enables more than 100 companies, mainly in the Fortune 1000, to deliver an affordable option for corporate relocation assistance that allows businesses to expand the scope of workers who are offered this valuable service. The additional benefit helps companies boost their offer-to-acceptance ratios and increase employee retention. In addition, companies are reporting enormous timesaving for their HR departments as relocation questions are being handled by UrbanBound's technology. Current customers include Groupon, Razorfish, Plante Moran and CH Robinson.

'We believe in challenging the status quo in the $60 billion global relocation market by thinking differently about how businesses relocate and onboard employees,' said Jeff Ellman, co-founder of UrbanBound. 'By providing an affordable tool that empowers employees to make a smooth transition to a new location with minimal impact on their work and home life, we give our customers a powerful new benefit to offer to existing employees and new hires.'

Through UrbanBound's software platform, employees are able to self-administer their entire relocation. 'UrbanBound's unique platform allows employees to educate themselves on their new city, organize and plan their entire move, and get connected to vetted service providers who offer aggressive discounts through our group buying power,' says Michael Krasman, co-founder of UrbanBound.

'UrbanBound has all the characteristics of what we look for in an early stage investment,' said Lawson DeVries, general partner with Grotech Ventures. 'The relocation market, which has been historically served through old school, service-heavy businesses, is ripe for technical disruption. As a result, the UrbanBound product has achieved impressive adoption by companies of all sizes that are looking for a better, more cost effective way to effectively onboard new hires and transfers.'

'Bringing a SaaS-based solution to the largely non-automated corporate relocation process generates a significant ROI for customers, and a superior investment opportunity for investors,' added Larry Bettino, general partner, StarVest Partners.

About UrbanBound

UrbanBound is a web-based platform that provides companies with a comprehensive relocation solution for their newly hired and transferring employees. With more than 100 customers in the Fortune 1000, UrbanBound is expanding the range of employees who are offered valuable mobility benefits with its affordable, easy-to-use solution.

About Grotech Ventures

Founded in 1984, Grotech Ventures (www.grotech.com) is a leading early investor in high-potential technology companies. Grotech seeks innovative, early-stage IT companies and continues to invest and add value throughout the growth of its portfolio companies. The firm has a strong combination of industry relationships and deep domain and operational expertise to accelerate growth. Grotech supports early-stage companies through investments starting at $500,000. General partners include Frank Adams, Chuck Cullen, Lawson DeVries, Steve Fredrick, Don Rainey and Joe Zell.

About StarVest Partners, L.P.

StarVest Partners is a New York City-based venture capital firm investing in technology-enabled business services companies throughout the U.S. The firm's value-added partnership focuses on key emerging technology and services sectors including: Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Data & Analytics, Internet Marketing, eCommerce Infrastructure and Security Management. StarVest has invested in over 40 companies, helping to build companies with notable exits such as NetSuite; iCrossing, acquired by Hearst; Fieldglass, acquired by Madison Dearborn; Connected, acquired by Iron Mountain; and Message One, acquired by Dell Computer. The firm's general partners are Deborah A. Farrington, Laura B. Sachar, Jeanne M. Sullivan and Larry A. Bettino. More information about StarVest is available at the company's website: www.starvestpartners.com.
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