Kanarys co-founder and CEO joins less than 20 Black female founders who have raised more than $10M.
DALLAS, Feb. 15, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Kanarys, Inc., a diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) technology company focused on providing the tools organizations need to create long-term systemic change around DEIB challenges, announces today it has raised $5M in its Series A financing round led by Seyen Capital. The round also includes Portfolia Rising America, Rackhouse Venture Capital, Revolution‘s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, StartFast Ventures, TechNexus Venture Collaborative, and Tech Square Ventures. Kanarys’ total capital raised to date is $10.5M.
The funding enabled Kanarys to recruit and appoint six key members focused on DEIB, engineering, finance, operations, product marketing, and sales to its executive team. It will also be used to further expand the Kanarys DEIB technology platform, which includes first-of-its-kind products such as the Equity Innovation Solution, Organizational Systems Assessment, and Supplier DEI Assessment.
“The momentum demonstrated through our Series A round underscores the importance and growth we’ve seen in DEIB solutions over the past several years. DEIB remains a critical driver to a thriving business, in every economic climate, and company leaders should continue to bolster their efforts when it comes to prioritizing DEIB,” said Mandy Price, co-founder and CEO of Kanarys. “We’ve been on a mission since 2018 to develop and deliver data-driven technology tools that advance DEIB in the workplace and create a culture of meaningful engagement across the global workforce. Our solutions empower companies to not only address the unique needs of their employees but also foster inclusion among their stakeholders and customers. This funding, along with the hiring of leading industry experts, will catapult us towards fulfilling our mission.”
Kanarys has seen tremendous revenue and logo growth since its inception, revealing that companies are seeking out sustainable, data-driven DEIB solutions. In just five years, Kanarys has grown from an idea to a category industry leader in DEIB that serves major customers including Yum! Brands, Silicon Labs, the Chuck E. Cheese Corporation, 7-Eleven, and other Fortune 500 companies, along with establishing strategic partnerships with leading national advocacy groups such as Prospanica, the National Society of Black Engineers, and INROADS. Kanarys has transformed notable workplaces using its extensive DEIB data-driven approach, ultimately improving workplace experiences for tens of thousands of employees.
“As the leading provider of data-driven DEIB solutions, Kanarys demonstrates its value to companies and employees worldwide,” said George Spencer III, Senior Managing Director of Seyen Capital. “Today companies are being held to higher standards when it comes to DEIB, and Kanarys has developed the platform companies need to manage DEIB and make accountability more transparent and reliable for company boards, managers, investors, employees, and other key stakeholders. I am confident that our investment will further advance greater equity and transparency in the workplace, and we are excited to see the impact our investment has on furthering their mission.”
Despite the challenges Black and female founders face in achieving equitable funding, Kanarys raised another groundbreaking round, indicating the growing investment in DEIB and data-based tools, like Kanarys, that are poised to move the needle on systemic progress. In January 2021, Kanarys closed its historic $3M seed round, and at that time, Mandy Price was among just 93 Black women to have raised over $1M in funding. Today, with the landmark Series A, Mandy joins less than 20 Black female founders who have raised more than $10M, and Kanarys is now the first Black and female-founded company based in Texas that has raised over $10M.
“At Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund, we champion entrepreneurs across the country who are building groundbreaking companies and innovative products,” said David Hall, Managing Partner of Revolution’s Rise of the Rest Seed Fund. “Since investing in Kanarys’ seed round, we’ve seen their accelerated growth and contributions to DEIB innovation, which is why we’re excited to back Kanarys again for their Series A. Kanarys’ success underscores the notion that entrepreneurs can thrive in ecosystems outside of Silicon Valley.”
“While many corporations recognize the importance of DEI, few tools are equipped to measure equity and inclusion,” said Terry Howerton, Co-founder and CEO of TechNexus Venture Collaborative. “Kanarys is using hundreds of data sources to quantify equity and inclusion, uncover structural bias and drive systemic change. Our team is confident that an investment in Kanarys can help further the conversation around prioritization alignment with our Corporate Partners’ internal DEI objectives, help with long-term talent retention, and potentially present a roadmap of options that could more clearly define next steps.”
“Designed to identify problem areas and close gaps, Kanarys’ data-driven platform solves a critical issue for companies wanting to create long-term systemic change around DEIB challenges,” said Chuck Stormon, Managing Partner of StartFast Ventures. “At StartFast Ventures, we are passionate about investing in businesses that have the potential to make a lasting impact, and we believe Kanarys is poised to transform workplaces everywhere. We were particularly impressed by their strong, well-rounded team, proven track record, and potential for exponential growth, which is why we’re excited to support Kanarys in their next chapter.”
Executive Team Appointments
To propel the company’s growth, Kanarys appointed six industry leaders to its executive team:
- Albert Fong, who has extensive experience with early to mid-stage companies focused on HR technology and served in senior marketing roles at Reflektive, Topia, and Mindtickle among others, was appointed Vice President of Product Marketing.
- Cecilia Choi, the previous Head of Operations of Americas at Papaya Global, who built their operations function in the United States, joined Kanarys as the Vice President of Operations.
- Chad Stoerp, a SaaS and tech-enabled subscriptions finance leader who has completed over $200M in financing transactions, became the Vice President of Finance.
- Dawn Christian, who brings extensive DEIB experience and is a certified mental health, wellness, and diversity and inclusion practitioner, was appointed Executive Vice President of DEIB. She has also served in senior leadership roles including leading diversity at a large public global company.
- D’ontreye Nero, an accomplished technical professional with more than 20 years of experience building and managing software and cloud solutions, was appointed Vice President of Engineering.
- Joe Fernandez, an industry leader in human capital and digital transformation, is now Vice President of Sales. He has led and scaled sales teams at BetterUp, LinkedIn, and OnFrontiers.
In 2022, Kanarys achieved several notable milestones, including a partnership with HubSpot, where HubSpot Ventures invested in Kanarys’ platform and Kanarys helped HubSpot’s customers improve DEIB through its proprietary DEI Maturity Quiz.