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Marketo, marketing-automation software

Built by marketers, for marketers, Marketo delivers marketing-automation software for engagement marketing, helping marketers develop long-term relationships with their customers, from acquisition to advocacy.


In the decade prior to Battery’s 2011 investment in Marketo, several trends converged to transform marketing from a business function with hard-to-measure ROI—one that often relied on a single channel, such as advertising—into a measurable, targeted and multi-channel business function. These trends included the rise of online marketing; search- engine optimization and search-engine marketing; the ability to capture, identify and analyze website traffic; and the emergence of social networks as marketing channels. As a result, companies became increasingly focused on the measurability and accountability of their marketing spend. This gave rise to vendors like Marketo, which delivered marketing-automation solutions to both make online marketing initiatives more effective and to capture and analyze program results.

Battery’s thesis behind the investment was that marketing- automation solutions would emerge to become just as important to marketers as customer relationship management (CRM) systems—and together the two platforms would compose the critical marketing infrastructure of organizations. Battery led Marketo’s 2011 pre-IPO round of financing.

Battery’s Impact:

  • Battery focused on helping Marketo as it prepared for its 2013 initial public offering, advising on activities such as preparing its finance systems and processes to stand up to public reporting requirements and selecting bankers.
  • Battery General Partner Neeraj Agrawal also served on Marketo’s audit committee.


Marketo went public in May 2013 (NASDAQ: MKTO). Agrawal was the last of Marketo’s VC investors to come off its board following its IPO.

Having built deep relationships with the executive team at Marketo, several Marketo executives went on to work at additional Battery portfolio companies in the years following Marketo’s IPO, including company co-founder and CEO Phil Fernandez, who serves as a board director at Battery portfolio companies Braze and Collibra.

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Marketo Related ARTICLES

The presented case study investment was made in particular economic and market conditions. There can be no assurance that Battery Venture would elect, or be able, to exploit similar opportunities in a similar manner under similar or different economic and market conditions. More generally, there can be no assurances that the Battery vehicles will have comparable investment opportunities in the future. No assumptions should be made that any investments identified above were profitable. It should not be assumed that recommendations made in the future will be profitable or comparable to the portfolio company described in this case study. For a full list of all Battery Ventures investments, please click here.

Focus area
Application Software
Acquired by Vista Equity Partners
San Mateo, California

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