Startups

Facetune Maker Lightricks Lands $135 Million Series C At A $1 Billion Valuation

On Wednesday, Jerusalem-based Lightricks announced it raised $135 million in a Series C round, which values the company at $1 billion, post-money. Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing led the deal. Insight Partners and ClalTech, which also put money in Lightricks’ last round (a $60 million deal announced in November 2018), participated in the venture’s Series C. According to the company, and Crunchbase data, Lightricks has raised $205 million in venture backing to date, including the round announced today.

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Lightricks makes a number of photo and video-editing applications for iOS and Android. It’s probably best known for Facetune2, a photo retouching and editing app popular with the selfie-taking crowd. According to app data provider Apptopia, Facetune2 is downloaded approximately 3.1 million times per month from the iOS App Store.

Lightricks also makes a suite of mobile photo, video, and motion graphics-editing and composition applications aimed at creative and marketing professionals. “Lightricks’ seven apps have over 180 million downloads worldwide and nearly three million paying subscribers,” the company said.

Lightricks was among the first companies to implement subscription pricing for its mobile applications. Since the launch of the iOS App Store and Google Play Stores, mobile developers primarily relied on one-time purchases. When Lightricks launched the first version of Facetune in March 2013, it cost $3.99, once. By the time Lightricks released Facetune2 in late 2016, the company was generating $10 million in annual recurring revenue between one-time sales of Facetune, its Enlight suite, and its other apps.

Shifting to a subscription model has been good for Lightricks. “Since moving to a subscription-based model three years ago, Lightricks’ revenues have tripled year after year,” the company said in its Series C announcement.

All of Lightricks’ paid apps are available on a subscription basis. For those who wish to purchase a perpetual license to the software, the company offers that as an option as well. Its most popular app, Facetune2, is currently priced at $5.99 for one month, $2.99 per month for a six-month license ($35.99 total), or for a one-time purchase of $69.99.

Lightricks said it will use the new capital to scale up its operations. The company currently employs 250 people in Israel and the United Kingdom, but has plans to “significantly grow its current team.” Lightricks will open a third office in Germany.

“We’re excited to reach this milestone, but we’re just getting started on our mission to create fun and powerful tools that reimagine the way content is created all over the world,” said Lightricks’ co-founder and CEO Zeev Farbman.

With its fresh ten-figure valuation, Lightricks joins the ranks of other Israel-based unicorns, including IronSource, Infinidat, Como, Landa Digital, OrCam Technologies, and, most recently, Monday.com. According to Crunchbase data, Israeli companies have raised over $2 billion in combined seed, early-stage, late-stage, and private equity backing so far in 2019. Lightricks’ $135 million haul is the largest Series C round closed by an Israel-headquartered company, according to Crunchbase data.

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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