Hex raises $28M as data collaboration platform gains traction.

In today’s tight investment environment, many companies are struggling to secure funding. However, data collaboration startup, Hex, has defied the odds and landed another $28 million from Sequoia with participation from existing investors Andreessen Horowitz, Amplify, and Snowflake. The company’s co-founder and CEO, Barry McCardel, says he wasn’t looking for funding when Sequoia approached him. Despite having $52 million in the bank from his previous funding round last year, McCardel saw the offer as a no-brainer that would allow the company to invest deeply in its product and team, especially around the AI opportunity.

Hex has been growing at a rapid clip since its funding last year, with revenue and the size of the business growing by 4x in one year. The company now has 450 paying customers, including Brex, Notion, Toast, and Chegg. McCardel believes that the collaborative approach to data and the growing recognition that AI is transforming workflows are the biggest reasons for the product’s growing popularity.

Most recently, Hex added a tool called Hex Magic, a generative AI approach to interacting with data with plain language by asking questions about the data or asking Hex to undertake a task like auto-completing a join. The software responds to the requests, making it easier for users who don’t know SQL or Python to use the platform. McCardel sees this as a way to expand the user base beyond data scientists and people who know coding.

“Our product uniquely allows collaboration across different data personas. I think that’s also really powerful. And I think the AI stuff is just accretive to that. You don’t necessarily have to know how to write the perfect syntax in Python to do something because Hex can help you do that. So I think that’s a pretty powerful thing that we’ll just see become more and more important in terms of opening up [the platform] to more people,” he said.

Hex was founded in 2019 and has now raised over $100 million dollars in just four years, per Crunchbase data. With the most recent round of funding, McCardel says he should have five years of runway, setting his company up to ride out whatever economic uncertainty may be out there while giving him the freedom to grow the platform as needed.

In conclusion, Hex’s success in securing funding despite not actively seeking it is a testament to the company’s growth potential and innovative approach to data collaboration. With its new tool Hex Magic, the company is poised to expand its user base beyond data scientists and coding experts, making it accessible to a wider audience. With five years of runway, Hex is well-positioned to weather any economic uncertainty and continue growing its platform.