Percolate Raises $40 Million to Build the Ultimate Marketing Machine

Also plans San Fran expansion

This marketing company may be a CMO's secret weapon. It reportedly helped Unilever save millions of dollars in marketing costs, and GE uses it to get more social on places like Snapchat and Instagram.

Now, New York-based Percolate says it's set to take over Silicon Valley. Percolate announced a $40 million fundraising round today and plans to grow its San Francisco office, where most of its enterprise software rivals are centered.

"We are building a really large company," said James Gross, co-founder and president. "We want to be the system of record for marketing."

Percolate sells software that helps CMOs and other marketing executives plan, manage and measure campaigns across the Web, social media, TV, print and outdoors. It's a hot space, and the startup has raised a total of $75 million. Lightspeed Venture Partners was its latest investor.

The move was partly designed to bring in advisers who know about taking enterprise software companies public, Gross said. However, there are no immediate plans for an IPO.

For now, Percolate is content to expand its offices and products. It more than doubled its features this year, like integrating more tightly with Pinterest and LinkedIn. More than 200 brands—including Unilever, GE, Chobani, Pinterest, Heineken and Converse—use the service.

Unilever said the software helps it save $10 million a year by eliminating overlap in its marketing plans and speeding up execution. Percolate lets these brands store their creative material in the cloud, generate content, push it out to the Web or other channels, and then measure the effects of the messaging.

"The CMO's No. 1 challenge is managing the complexity of modern marketing in a global economy transformed by social, mobile and software," Gross said in today's announcement.

The clients pay to license the software and for support services, and Gross said revenue is growing more than 165 percent yearly. He did not say how much revenue Percolate generates or the value of the company after the latest fundraising.

The company competes in some areas with large enterprise software firms like Salesforce, Adobe and Oracle and with newcomers like Spredfast and Sprinklr.