While Melanie Perkins struggled to raise venture capital for Canva in 2011, one of the first pitch decks she put together was an easy-to-use website builder.
A decade later, Perkins has made her dream come true amid a slew of product upgrades unveiled this week. Canva’s co-founder and CEO said it took a little longer than she expected, but she’s excited to see it as part of the company’s new Visual Worksuite.
The options anchor Canva users even deeper into the company’s ecosystem, directly challenging the office products of pioneering technology companies such as Google, WordPress, Adobe and Microsoft.
“With the launch of our new Visual Worksuite, we are bringing simple design products to the workplace to empower every employee, in every organization, on every device,” said Perkins.
The privately held Sydney-based company, whose valuation was recently slashed by a third to a whopping $37 billion, now has more than 4 million paying customers using Canva for Teams, with the number of users more than triple the number of other tech giants in the past 12 months. as Zoom, Salesforce, PayPal and Reddit also joined.
The new visual work suite now includes drop-and-drag design products for documents, whiteboards and websites, in addition to a video background remover and data visualization through data storytelling company Flourish, which Canva acquired earlier this year. Complementing the presentation side of the platform, Canva has also built an app-based virtual clicker for smartphones to manage the page flow on the screen.
The company is also expanding Canva Print to 35 products, from invitations to flyers, photo books, hoodies, mugs and posters, with home delivery or pick-up options.
Presenting the new features with co-founders Cameron Adams and Cliff Cliff Obrecht, Perkins says Canva Worksuite is reinventing traditional office products for the modern era to deliver to professionals around the world.
Designed for brainstorming and team collaboration, Canva Whiteboards offers a virtual board with everything from sticky notes to images and diagrams, and a synced timer.
Canva websites allow users to create websites from any device with no technical skills, and offer everything from customizable domain registration to site analysis.
“It took a long time to get to this point,” Perkins confessed, revealing her 2011 idea to the media.
“It was a dream that instead of having to use really clunky software or even create a simple website, you could make one with the same ease that you can create all of your products in Canva,” said they.
“If you think responsive design happens automatically, it’s technically quite challenging, but here we are.”