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Canada's Assent Compliance raises $31.4M Series B round to help businesses stay in compliance

Canada's Assent Compliance raises $31.4M Series B round to help businesses stay in compliance
From TechCrunch - July 14, 2017

Assent Compliance, an Ottawa-based startup, isnt in a sexy space. The company focuses on helping enterprises collect the necessary data to keep their global supply chains in compliance with local and international regulations. But while that may not sound like the most exciting space to be in, the company today announced that it has raised a $40 million CAD Series B round (thats about $31.4 million U.S.) led by Greenspring Associates.

Other participants include existing investors Volition Capital, Open Text Enterprise Application Fund, Business Development Bank of Canada, National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program, Royal Bank of Canada and a number of private investors. With this round, the company has now raised $60 million CAD, making it one of the better-funded Canadian startups at the Series B stage.

Its worth noting that the company has been around since 2005, but as its current CEO Andrew Waitman told me, the focus on compliance only really came in 2010. For the next five years, the team iterated on this idea. When Waitman came to the company in 2014 (after having met the companys VP of marketing Matt Whitteker in the boxing ring), the company had about 20 employees. Today it has 225 employees and, according to its own numbers, works with 40 percent of the S&P 500 product companies, which gather data from more than 300,000 companies around the globe.

For most international companies, compliance is a major pain point, especially with regard to how they keep the various players in their supplier ecosystem in compliance. For some companies this is about avoiding conflict minerals or staying in compliance with EuropesREACHregulations for chemicals or CaliforniasSafe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986. Currently, even major Fortune 500 companies still tend to use Excel spreadsheets to audit and track their vendors, which isnt exactly the most efficient way of doing this.

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