Ably team

Ably Real-time secures £5.68 million Series A investment led by MMC Ventures

Data streaming platform Ably secures Series A, as consumer demand for real-time services rockets – MMC Ventures leads $7m Series A fundraise

London, 06 April 2020: Data streaming platform Ably has raised $7m in Series A funding, led by MMC Ventures, with Forward Partners co-investing. Ably delivers 100 billion messages per month and the round will be used to scale, as demand for real-time services around the world escalates. 

Naturally, consumers expect real-time live experiences as the norm – including instant messaging, transit updates, and live scores – but they take significant background engineering complexity to deliver, especially at scale. Ably provides cloud infrastructure and APIs that empower developers to overcome these complexities and deliver rich live experiences to their users. Large enterprises and high-growth tech companies choose Ably to offload the technical and operational burden required to deliver globally-available real-time messaging services.

Some of Ably’s customers include: SaaS vendor HubSpot, Lightspeed Systems and MobyMax in eLearning; BlueJeans the VOiP provider; two of the largest car manufacturers in the world for connected cars; and Tennis Australia, being the exclusive online scoring and commentary provider for the Australian Open. Ably provides the underlying software and infrastructure required to power the daily digital experiences we’re all accustomed to including:

  • Over 1 billion real-time messages a month for HubSpot’s live chat and notifications
  • Real time transit updates for three million residents of Chicago, including 300,000 metro users

Ably has continued to grow year-on-year by 150% as demand from developers for real-time data rises exponentially. IDC predicts that – as global connectivity grows – by 2025, one third of all data produced globally will be real-time. Each month, Ably streams over 100 billion messages to 50 million end-users across smartphones, embedded devices and browsers.

Software engineers Matthew O’Riordan and Dr Paddy Byers co-founded the company in 2013, and launched in 2016 following intense research and development. O’Riordan and Byers identified the gap in the market, providing developers with an ‘infrastructure-as-a-service’ offering for real time data transport. Since then, Ably has attracted enterprise-scale customers across key industries: SaaS, mobility and logistics, sports and media, IoT, eCommerce, and eLearning. 

Matthew O’Riordan, CEO & Co-Founder, Ably said:

This is a significant milestone for Ably, as it enables us to deliver on our mission – that is, to provide the real-time infrastructure needed by developers to deliver live experiences to their customers. 

Consumers today expect their digital experiences to be real-time, yet it can be incredibly difficult for developers to deliver that. Ably solves that problem by providing simple APIs that developers can depend on, so that they can get on with building their apps and services. We are on course to deliver real-time app-based experiences to a billion people each month.

This funding allows us to really ramp investment in the platform and build more features that we know developers need to further integrate into other event-driven platforms and support more open protocols.”

Dan Bailey, Principal at MMC Ventures, said:

The production of real-time data is rapidly expanding and consumer expectations of real-time experiences are growing ever more demanding. Developers wanting to build real time products at scale have been poorly served by existing products that require compromises between scale, reliability and consistency.

Ably has made a series of architectural choices that enable them to deliver greater reliability and integrity at scale, which enables their customers to build better experiences for their users. Matt and the team have a compelling vision for the future of real-time data and integration, and we look forward to supporting them as they build a transformative business.

In the past year, Ably has welcomed Gary Barnes, as its Chief Commercial Officer, formerly Global Head of Sales at ThoughtWorks to the team. Vinay Bhindi and Ben Gamble, have also joined from Improbable as Finance and Operations Director and Head of Developer Relations respectively. Tom Hammond now leads on Channels and Partnerships, bringing many years of experience from Siemens.

MMC Ventures has invested from it’s £52 million MMC Greater London Fund, launched in May 2019, which forms part of the Mayor of London’s initiative – the Greater London Investment Fund.

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About Ably 

Ably provides the underlying software and infrastructure required to power the daily digital experiences we’re all accustomed to. Some of the things we power include HubSpot’s live chat solution, in-play scores for millions of Australian Open fans, and real time transit updates for three million Chicagoans.

Providing these everyday experiences requires transporting data around the world at low latency, often below 100ms. But speed isn’t the only issue. Many realtime features, for example live chat, require that data arrives in the order that it’s sent without any loss along the way due to connectivity or other issues. Scratch beneath the surface of these requirements and a slew of edge-case engineering appears. And these are extremely hard problems that take months to solve, especially at scale.

Engineers across startups and enterprises are recognizing that Ably can uniquely solve the problems they care about quickly and with simple yet powerful APIs. This gives them a Realtime Advantage by accelerating time to market while providing a dependable and highly performant realtime service.

About MMC Ventures

MMC funds and helps scale technology companies that are transforming today’s markets from the inside-out.

MMC commits to a deep understanding of each company’s underlying technology and business model to help make better decisions and be more effective partners.

Transformative technology companies MMC has backed to date include Gousto, Interactive Investor, NewVoiceMedia, Signal AI, Bloom & Wild and Peak. Explore MMC’s research and other actionable insights at mmcventures.com.

Manoj Ranaweera

Manoj has founded, failed and successfully exited from a number of technology product companies as well as support organisations since 2004. Among them, Northern Tech Awards and edocr.com were acquired by GP Bullhound and Accusoft, Inc respectively. Today, Manoj is building a trusted support network for technology companies. He is working with founding teams to help them accelerate including raising investment and M&A.