When Yin Wu started Pulley, a cap-table and stock management startup, in 2019 she set out to compete with the likes of Carta. My colleague Connie Loizos spoke to Wu in 2020 when the company raised $10 million.
The company provides tools and insights to founders and employees who want to make more informed decisions about their stock ownership related to recruiting and fundraising, while also complying with aspects such as taxation and accounting.
“Equity is something we’re seeing more and more,” Wu told londonbusinessblog.com. “For us, it’s not so much about how we take market share from partners, it’s about how we think this market will continue to grow, and how can we be a big part of that? We build a lot on equity insights. It’s not just about how you record how much equity someone has on a cap table, but how you help someone make the decisions about it?”
Fast-forward 2 years and Pulley, also co-founded by Mark Erdmann, holds out. The company now partners with more than 1,700 companies and sales have tripled in the past year.
Additionally, Pulley announced today that it raised an additional $40 million in Series B dollars earlier this year. The round was led by Keith Rabois of Founders Fund and included existing investors, such as Stripe and Elad Gil.
It also launched its free plan, called Pulley Seed, for new customers with fewer than 25 stakeholders. They can model and compare different financing scenarios, raise capital and set up employee stock exchanges, all at no cost.
Pulley is also helping companies cope with this economic downturn, and while most of the companies Pulley works with are in the early stages and don’t see what kind of layoffs will happen in later stages, I asked Wu what kind of questions Pulley was getting. from customers.
“Companies often ask what if they have to cancel a down lap, or what happens when people go,” she said. “That is really a question for lawyers and accountants. However, we also receive questions about specific situations regarding equity, even if you leave a company. Remember you have a certain amount of time to exercise the options, so make sure you have the capital if you want to exercise options.”
The new investment gives Pulley approximately $50 million in total funding raised to date. While Wu did not disclose a specific valuation, she did say it was “a significant increase” from the company’s valuation in the latest round.
Wu plans to use the new funds to expand Pulley’s 40-plus workforce and expand in product engineering and marketing, which is a new focus for the company, she added.
In addition, the company now has a board of directors and as part of the investment, Rabois will join the board. Wu explained that Founders Fund shared Pulley’s core philosophy of helping founders, and she and Erdmann liked that Rabois had the kind of operational experience that allowed him to work with companies at all different stages.
“Companies are in a difficult position,” Rabois said in a written statement. “Stock decisions are more difficult than ever, but the tools to manage them have not kept pace. Pulley helps users understand their property and get the most out of their property. There has never been a more urgent time than now to get a grip on your equity.”