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Why We Invested: 6sense

January 20, 2022

B Capital is excited to partner with 6sense whose business model uncovers anonymous buying behavior, prioritizes accounts for sales and marketing, and enables them to engage resistant buying teams with personalized, multi-channel, multi-touch campaigns. Through our diligence, we learned that nearly every customer was able to achieve meaningful ROI almost immediately upon implementing 6sense.

By Rashmi Gopinath, Karly Wentz, and Maura Kopko

Given the abundance of information available today, marketers are fighting for the attention of potential customers. This has given rise to a number of strategies and software solutions to improve marketing performance; specifically, account-based marketing (ABM) is rising in importance. ABM is a go-to-market strategy in which B2B marketers align with sales counterparts to target a defined set of high-priority accounts. ABM strategies help companies focus on the highest possible ROI, bringing attention to the highest-value accounts with the highest likelihood of conversion. Marketers have observed lifts in key marketing metrics from their ABM efforts, including an increase in web traffic, advertising and email marketing performance improvements, and conversion rate gains throughout the funnel.

While ABM isn’t new, the prevalence of ABM strategies has scaled significantly, as revenue teams recognize the successes of these programs in driving top-line growth. Per the State of ABM 2020 report, 94% of marketing teams currently have an ABM program, this is up from 77% the year prior. Further, more than 80% of midsize to large B2B organizations with complex sales processes have adopted or piloted at least one ABM program, according to Gartner. There is also a dynamic of companies “maturing” in their ABM programs, as they take time to ramp up and optimize.

We are at a pivotal point in the market, as nearly all marketers recognize the value of ABM, yet the majority are still in the early stages of implementing processes and technologies to execute upon it.

At the same time, marketing automation and optimization solutions have emerged as a massive and fast-growing market segment. “RevTech” is an area we’ve been tracking closely at B Capital as a part of our broader Future of Work thesis. ABM software platforms are critical to executing on this thesis, providing and analyzing data to bring to light high value accounts. Gartner specifically highlights intent data as a key driver of value for organizations in their future view of the market. Leveraging intent data has now become “a standard expectation” for marketing teams to understand which buyers are in market and demonstrating readiness to buy.

That is why we are excited to announce our investment in 6sense, an account engagement platform that helps organizations amplify revenue through its data-driven approach to account-based marketing and sales.

6sense’s AI-driven platform analyzes data from a variety of first-party and third-party sources to identify high priority accounts, determining how closely these accounts fit the ideal customer profile and pinpointing exactly where these accounts are in the buyer journey. No company knows the entire universe of accounts that could benefit from their product offerings, but 6sense can light up this “dark funnel” by not only identifying anonymous buyers, but also predicting their readiness to purchase.

We were struck by the substantial value that customers are able to realize through the 6sense platform. 6sense uncovers anonymous buying behavior, prioritizes accounts for sales and marketing, and enables them to engage resistant buying teams with personalized, multi-channel, multi-touch campaigns. In other words, 6sense is able to identify new accounts and prioritize the highest ROI accounts, leading to real results.

Through our diligence, we learned that nearly every customer was able to achieve meaningful ROI almost immediately upon implementing 6sense.

On average, 6sense customers achieve 10% improvement in opportunity conversion rates, 25% reduction in deal-to-close time, and 120% greater revenue effectiveness.

The company has built a strong competitive edge through its differentiated offerings and AI models, pulling ahead as a leader in the highly competitive RevTech space. AI and the predictive elements of 6sense’s technology, which have been a consistent part of the product since it was founded, have helped the company create a data moat and sustainable competitive advantage. This has a tremendous flywheel effect that enables 6sense to deliver much better performance and ROI to users. This is demonstrated by the company’s significant growth and top tier metrics to date. 6sense currently has run rate revenue exceeding $110 million and a net retention rate over 125%. Over 700 top enterprises rely on 6Sense to drive predictable top-line growth by putting the power of AI and machine learning behind every member of their revenue teams.

Beyond the current addressable market, 6sense has an ambitious vision to become the infrastructure backbone for aggregating revenue data from all sources, leveraging the company’s robust AI-driven platform to revolutionize the way marketing and sales is executed. 6sense’s recent acquisitions of companies like Fortella, Slintel, and Saleswhale, have accelerated this roadmap and make 6sense well-positioned for significant future growth in adjacent segments. These acquisitions have helped 6sense achieve both near-term and longer-term TAM expansion, larger ASPs, increased win rates, higher gross retention and expanding net retention metrics.

Through our conversations with 6sense’s management team, it was clear the company has the right team in place to execute on its ambitious roadmap.

6sense is led by a seasoned management team with deep domain expertise in B2B software. Jason Zintak, the company’s CEO, joined in 2017 and has been instrumental in transforming 6sense into a category leader within the ABM market segment.

Over the past 23 years, Jason has helped establish disruptive platforms in marketing technology, ERP, CRM and supply chain. Under his leadership, 6sense was named a Best Workplace by Inc. for the third consecutive year, and was recognized as a Company for the Happiest Employees, Best Perks and Benefits, Best Culture, Best for Women and Best for Diversity based on employee feedback at Comparably. Jason was specifically recognized as the Best CEO by Glassdoor and Comparably this year.

At B Capital, we look to partner with and invest in industry leaders that drive real value for their customers. 6sense is doing just that – providing an innovative platform that has direct impact on a customer’s top line. As global investors in enterprise software, we look forward to partnering with 6sense in this next phase of growth and support them as they help organizations accelerate revenue growth.

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