Continuous localization platform Lokalise raises $50M
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Lokalise, a so-called “continuous localization” platform that helps companies ensure that their software is fully tailored for each target market, has raised $50 million in a series B round of funding.
Any company that’s serious about expanding its products and services into new countries will probably have to embrace localization — this goes beyond translating the text in their website and apps, and includes everything from altering the design and layout to suit a right-to-left language, for example, to ensuring that the correct local currency is used.
Traditionally, the translation and localization process has often been something that comes “after,” and is treated as a one-off project. That might be okay with a printed brochure, for example, but with software that is constantly evolving and being updated, a different approach is needed.
Continuous localization runs adjacent to the principles embodied by agile software development — it’s a constantly moving process, involving regular releases and close collaboration across multiple teams. So when a company ships a new product or feature in their software, it is also simultaneously localized for each market.
Founded in 2017, Lokalise packs myriad features with “continuous localization” firmly in mind, including collaborative translation that enables users to manage all their project translations and tasks from a single platform. It incorporates integrated chat, commenting tools, notifications, computer-assisted translation (CAT) features, and automation — such as the ability to stitch individual tasks into interconnected chains so that when one task is completed, the next task in the chain starts automatically.
Above: Lokalise in action
Elsewhere, Lokalise offers an API and dozens of integrations out-of-the-box, supporting translators, managers, marketers, developers, designers, and security personnel — these include GitHub, Docker, Figma, Adobe XD, WordPress, Hubspot, Slack, Salesforce, and Zendesk. So a designer can use one of Lokalise’s plugins to preview their designs and preempt any localization errors that might crop up, such as if a German translation is too big to fit on a specific button.
“We provide a single source of truth for localization processes, which increases efficiency for technical teams and leads to on-time launches,” Lokalise cofounder and CEO Nick Ustinov told VentureBeat.
In its four years in business, Lokalise had raised some $6 million in funding and amassed a fairly impressive roster of customers, including Mastercard, Starbucks, and Hyundai. In truth, though, the problem that Lokalise is setting out to solve is one that impacts companies of all sizes, across all industries — from B2C startups all the way through to B2B enterprises.
“Our customers have two commonalities — they have some digital presence with a mobile or web app, and they see additional opportunities for local, national, or international expansion as a growth-driver,” Lokalise cofounder and chief revenue officer Petr Antropov told VentureBeat. “[And] our customers are using a CI/CD pipeline, and are releasing updates at an accelerated pace. By using Lokalise, they are able to involve more of their team in the localization process, which improves quality while not increasing complexity or time to launch.”
Lokalise’s series B investment was led by CRV, with participation from Creandum, Dawn Capital, Chalfen VC, 3VC, S16VC, among a handful of angel investors. With another $50 million in the bank, the company — which is fully remote — reports that it plans to double down on its hiring, product development, and third-party partnerships.
“This new funding makes it possible for us to help more businesses understand, and act on, the need to make their products multilingual from day one,” Antropov added.
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