TROOP raises $11m to Expand Hybrid Meeting Access across Africa

TROOP raises $11m to Expand Hybrid Meeting Access across Africa

To grow its presence in South Africa and beyond, TROOP, a creator of corporate meeting technology and services, announced it had raised $11 million (about R201 million) in Series B funding. By 2023, TROOP wants to triple the number of employees it has, and by 2025, it wants to have 170 people working for it globally.

With deep technological integrations into best-in-class service providers like Spotnana, Center, and others, The TROOP: One Platform will include enhanced planning capabilities, expand into booking, management, and meeting expenses, and give customers flexibility to work with the service providers of their choice. This platform will provide a superior user experience and workflow for corporations planning in-person meetings.

According to Steve Singh, executive chairperson of TROOP and managing director at Madrona, the platform has transformed what has traditionally been a largely manual and time-intensive process into a self-serve platform that optimizes meeting planning based on corporate goals, including travel time, locations, flights, lodging, cost, CO2 reductions, and others.

“TROOP fills that need with a platform that is easy to deploy, can be used by anyone, and that now leverages local experts and skills to deliver unique meetings and event experiences,” said Singh.

“TROOP’s expanding presence in South Africa comes at a crucial time, with the South African economy expected to make an upturn and its meetings, incentives, conferences, and events (MICE) industry likely to grow considerably over the coming year,” said TROOP co-founder Leonard Cremer.

“We look forward to establishing deeper roots in the country since we first established TROOP in South Africa in 2021, as well as making our offerings and services more accessible across the continent.”

Towards Virtual Planning

With the move toward dispersed teams, there is a greater need for group meetings, which is addressed by platforms such as TROOP. The funding signifies faith in the growing adoption of virtually assited setups in South Africa and across several African nations. TROOP assists businesses in scheduling, booking, paying for, and managing the logistics of in-person meetings. Their clientele includes both new businesses and well-established international corporations.

Henry Ellenbogen, managing partner and chief investment officer at Durable Capital Partners LP, which led the Series B funding round, noted that creating meaningful in-person relationships becomes more difficult than ever as organizations become increasingly hybrid or even totally remote. However, he believes that TROOP will provide the much-needed solution.

The adoption of a hybrid workplace by about 60% of businesses has increased the complexity of planning meetings. The full-time remote employees of TROOP are located in South Africa, and the company also has operations in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Spain.

“A portion of this investment will be allocated towards the continued growth of TROOP’s technology, customer success, and sales teams to support the broadening international footprint and rapid expansion across South Africa, Europe, and the US, and to deliver and launch TROOP: One, the company’s end-to-end meeting management platform due to launch later this year,” said Singh.