Software firm OnBoard lands $100M investment from private equity firm

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Indianapolis-based OnBoard, which operates a board management platform used by more than 12,000 boards, announced Wednesday it has secured a $100 million growth investment from JMI Equity, a growth equity firm focused on cloud software companies.

It’s the first major round of capital for OnBoard. It has been primarily bootstrapped and had only raised $5 million in private equity before this round.

The fundraising round is one of the largest by an Indiana tech company this year. Indianapolis-based medical software firm Greenlight Guru raised $120 million in growth capital in June. Also, Terminus announced in February it raised $90 million.

OnBoard—which currently has 139 employees, with 110 in central Indiana—said it plans to add 50 employees by year’s end, with more coming in 2022.

In the last 18 months, OnBoard—whose parent company is Indianapolis-based Passageways Inc.—has added more than 1,000 customers from more than 25 countries to its portfolio. Serving a wide range of industries and sectors, OnBoard “is the board intelligence platform of choice for enterprise corporations, higher education, professional associations, and financial institutions,” OnBoard CEO Paroon Chadha told IBJ.

In 2020 and 2021, OnBoard expanded its customer portfolio to more than 600 banks and financial service providers, 700 not-for-profit organizations, 250 learning institutions and 100 health care providers. Chadha said the customer list is a mix of publicly traded and privately held companies, not-for-profits and government entities. Chadha said the need for digital-based board solutions was heightened by the pandemic.

“Really it came down to what happened last year,” Chadha said. “Right when the world shut down, that’s when we saw our business really accelerate. We’re in the business of digital board meetings, and they all became digital.

“Boards do some of the most important work—they’re leading organizations,” he said. “This will allow us to think holistically about continuing to invest in boards and creating an experience that allows them to do their best work. In the past, we’ve been restricted by our balance sheet at times, but we can now take a forward posture and continue to innovate.”

JMI’s investment will accelerate OnBoard’s product innovation and category leadership, fuel organic market expansions and strategic acquisitions and strengthen continued brand growth. Company officials said that will allow OnBoard to reach more customers and serve the complex needs of boards and leadership teams globally, company officials said.

“This growth investment underscores the strategic need for businesses and organizations around the world to increase their boardroom intelligence and bolster data security,” Bob Nye, general partner at JMI Equity, which has offices in San Diego and Baltimore, said in a written statement. “OnBoard’s product innovation represents the best benefits of cloud-based software for board-led businesses and organizations: scalability, security and compliance, seamless multi-device delivery, and intuitive ease of use.”

As part of the transaction, JMI’s Nye and Principal Mac Williams will join the OnBoard board. The investment will also provide operational for OnBoard’s sister company, OnSemble, an employee collaboration platform also owned by Passageways, which Chadha founded in 2003.

“This is wonderful for Indiana,” Chadha said. “JMI is a top-tier investor and they’ve already made other positive investments in our state. I started with a seed investment from Purdue Federal Trade Union. This is a homegrown story. We are committed to this state and all the people who have helped along the way, as we see serious investment come into our space.”

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3 thoughts on “Software firm OnBoard lands $100M investment from private equity firm

  1. Love to hear about homegrown companies growing like this. Would be nice to see these homegrown companies make their marks downtown Indy by building a skyscrapper for a HQ.When you visit Seattle,Houston,Chicago,NYC,Detroit or Charlotte all show their wealth and influence by building grand magnificeint buildings. Tech companies,Oil companies,investiment and law firms, the automotive giants and banking hq in Charlotte all have made their marks on these and other cities by building skyscrapers to show wealth and power.