Insider unlocks unicorn status and plans to invest ₱1B in the Philippines

MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Insider, a leader in personalized, cross-channel customer experiences, today announced a $121 million Series D round led by QIA, at a $1.22 billion valuation. Other investors participating in the round include Sequoia, Riverwood Capital, 212, Wamda Capital, Esas Private Equity, and Endeavor Catalyst.

The additional capital will be used to fuel rapid global expansion, enhance the company’s core technology and scale global sales and marketing investments. Insider has aggressive global hiring plans with an emphasis on hiring female engineers to fill R&D and product development positions; in Singapore, it anticipates growing headcount by 600% over the next three years.

Headquartered in Singapore, Southeast Asia has been a key market for Insider since its establishment, as the company first expanded into 11 countries in Asia including Australia, Korea, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan and Vietnam prior to Europe, LATAM, and the US. The SaaS company serves some of the biggest brands in APAC including Singapore Airlines, Lenovo, Watsons, Central Group, Chow Sang Sang, and Hyundai.

“We’ve been blitzscaling remarkably in the past three years and achieved 3X growth. In the same period, our global team grew by 300%, and our customer base continues to increase,” said founder and CEO Hande Cilingir. “Following our aggressive expansion in Asia, Europe and LATAM, we’ll carry this momentum in the U.S. market. We are a trusted software partner to leading global brands like Samsung, MAC, Coca Cola, and Decathlon. We are laser-focused on bringing Insider to additional markets, and becoming the number one choice for every marketer on this planet.”

Today’s consumers engage digitally with brands across six or more channels on average. The push to digital has accelerated in Philippines, where 52% of Filipinos shopped online through apps and websites for the first time during the pandemic, and 43% of them made their first online purchase using social media channels1. Marketers are challenged with engaging with customers on their preferred channels when they are most active. Insider’s AI-powered platform brings together the most extensive set of personalization capabilities with emerging messaging channels like WhatsApp, Facebook, RCS, and SMS. Insider technology coordinates all offline and online data into a unified platform that allows enterprise marketers to:

  • connect customer data across channels and systems to reveal interests and preferred touchpoints
  • predict future behavior with an AI-powered intent engine, such as which customer segments are likely to convert, buy, and churn
  • orchestrate and deliver individualized, optimized experiences to customers.

Insider’s channel integrations take minutes, not months, reducing dependency on internal IT teams. The platform enables digital marketers to drive growth across channels and throughout the funnel from acquisition to activation, revenue, and retention (AARR), thereby impacting ROI metrics such as conversion rate, CAC, LTV, and average order value.

With this funding milestone, the company also became one of a few female-led SaaS unicorns in the world. Insider has achieved consistent, rapid growth and according to Crunchbase is one of the top 9 B2B SaaS unicorns globally: the fifth largest B2B SaaS unicorn in the U.S., fourth in Europe, second in Asia, and first in Latin America. 

Mr. Mansoor bin Ebrahim Al-Mahmoud, CEO of QIA, said: “QIA is constantly looking for innovators, both in the MENA region and globally, in line with our increasing focus on the tech space. Insider clearly stands out in the marketing technology ecosystem, and its highly personalized results can provide value to both audiences and businesses.”

Fay Supremo, Country Manager of Insider Philippines said: “Web stores are expected to grow 56% this year2, as offline storefronts rapidly increase their direct-to-consumer (D2C) presence. To secure consumers’ mindshare and preference, retailers, fintechs, and organizations growing in the ecommerce space need to leverage the power of AI, Customer Data & Experience (CDxP) platform, and cross-channel personalization technology to humanize the user experience to gain uplift in online sales, as well as create better customer experience and stickiness at scale.”

Insider’s platform is used by marketing teams at more than 1000+ global enterprise brands, including industry powerhouses such as Vodafone, Virgin, Hyundai, Watsons, Adidas, Marks & Spencer, BBVA, Yves Rocher and AVON. With teams on the ground in 28 countries, Insider ensures deep localization and support for clients.

Founded in 2012 by Cilingir (CEO), Serhat Soyuerel (Chief Revenue Officer), Arda Koterin (Chief Customer Officer), Sinan Toktay (CTO), Okan Yedibela (VP of Engineering), and Muharrem Derinkök (Chief Product Officer), the Insider team has more than 700 team members from 41 different nationalities across 28 countries worldwide. Insider is a female-led organisation with 60% of top executives in the company, including the CEO, CMO, CFO, and CHRO, being women.

Hande Cilingir was selected as one of the top women CEOs outside of the US by Crunchbase. The market-leading martech platform is trusted by one-third of the Fortune Global 500 and half of Dow Jones Global Titans 50. Insider was named Leader in The Forrester Wave for Cross-Channel Campaign Management 2021 and Gartner Magic Quadrant for Personalization Engines 2021. The company has been named #1 Leader on G2’s Mobile Marketing Software and Personalization Grids with a 4.6/5 rating for 20 consecutive quarters.


Investor Quotes

Pieter Kemps, Principal Sequoia Capital

“What we see in Sequoia[1]  is that companies that can deliver delight for their customers are the ones that win. And Insider is doing just that: using next-level individualization to help brands deliver delight to their customers. And without a doubt, this is the future of CX.”


Joe De Pinho, Principal at Riverwood Capital

“The bar for competition has been raised across the board in SaaS over the past 5 years. Insider stands out as an outlier. Hande is a truly exceptional leader and, backed by her brilliant co-founders and teams, is building a world-class software company with capabilities beyond those of many in the Valley. Theirs is a different mindset: one that breaks past boundaries and makes what seems impossible to many, a possibility.”


About Insider

Insider—one platform for individualized, cross-channel experiences—enables enterprise marketers to connect customer data across channels and systems, predict their future behavior with an AI intent engine and individualize customer experiences. Marketers use Insider’s platform to deliver experiences across channels like Web, App, Web Push, Email, SMS, and Messaging Apps (WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, RCS).

Insider was named Leader in The Forrester Wave for Cross-Channel Campaign Management 2021 and Gartner Magic Quadrant for Personalization Engines 2021. The company has been named #1 Leader on G2’s Mobile Marketing Software and Personalization Grids with a 4.6/5 rating for 20 consecutive quarters. CrunchBase recently ranked Insider’s co-founder and CEO Hande Cilingir as one of the top women CEOs outside the US.

One-third of the Fortune Global 500 companies and top brands in retail, automotive, and travel use Insider to deliver AI-backed personalized experiences that exceed customer expectations. Insider is trusted by over 1,000 global businesses, including Singapore Airlines, Samsung, GAP, Santander, Vodafone, IKEA, MAC, Virgin, Decathlon, Toyota, Burger King, Adidas, Marks & Spencer, BBVA, and Estée Lauder.


About QIA

Qatar Investment Authority (“QIA”) is the sovereign wealth fund of the State of Qatar. QIA was founded in 2005 to invest and manage the state reserve funds. QIA is among the largest and most active sovereign wealth funds globally. QIA invests across a wide range of asset classes and regions as well as in partnership with leading institutions around the world to build a global and diversified investment portfolio with a long-term perspective that can deliver sustainable returns and contribute to the prosperity of the State of Qatar. Contact:


About Riverwood

Riverwood Capital invests in high-growth companies in the technology and technology-enabled industries. Riverwood offers a unique combination of operational, strategic, technology, and financial insight to portfolio companies that typically need growth capital and expertise to scale on a global basis. The firm seeks to invest in established businesses with a proven technology and business model, and the proper fit in terms of culture and values. Riverwood has offices in Menlo Park, CA; New York, NY; São Paulo, Brazil; and Miami, FL.


About Sequoia Capital

Sequoia helps daring founders build legendary companies, from idea to IPO and beyond. Sequoia India operates in Southeast Asia and India where we actively partner with founders from a wide range of companies, across categories, including BYJUs, Carousell, Druva, GO-JEK, OYO Rooms, Tokopedia, Truecaller, Zilingo, Zomato, and more.

We spur founders to push the boundaries of what’s possible. In partnering with Sequoia, startups benefit from 48 years of tribal knowledge and lessons learned working with companies like Airbnb, Alibaba, Apple, Dropbox, Google, LinkedIn, and Stripe early on.

From the beginning, non-profits have been the backbone of our LP base, which means founders’ accomplishments make a meaningful difference. The majority of our profits are returned to great causes, like the Ford Foundation, Mayo Clinic, and MIT. For more information on Sequoia’s work in India and SE Asia, visit


About Wamda

Wamda accelerates entrepreneurship ecosystems throughout the Mena region by joining Wamda’s multi-stage, sector-agnostic investment vehicle, focused on partnering with high growth technology or technology-enabled startups, as well as the leading knowledge platform offering integrated programmes including thought leadership and research, community development, Wamda’s fellowship programme Wamda X, as well as corporate and government advisory services to the various stakeholders of the Mena startup ecosystem.


About Endeavor Catalyst

Endeavor Catalyst is an innovative, rules-based co-investment vehicle through which Endeavor invests into its portfolio companies. Launched in 2012, Endeavor Catalyst has raised more than $250M+ across three funds and made 230+ investments to date in 30 different countries. Investments include Globant (NYSE:GLOB) and Rappi (valued at $3.5B+) in Latin America, (acq’d Delivery Hero $589M, 2015) and Peak Games (acq’d Zynga $1.8B, 2020) in Turkey, RUMA (acq’d Go-JEK, 2017) in Indonesia, and FIGS (acq’d, 2017) in the US.