The world of web development continues to become more democratized – and more creative – thanks to innovations in headless systems that give more flexibility in how a site can look and function: the middle ground between using rigid templates and creating and maintaining each component of the technology stack web from scratch. Today, one of the startups that create headless tools specifically for content management, announces a large round of funding amid some important customer victories.
History block Is a startup based in Linz, Austria, which has created a headless CMS designed for both technical and non-technical users, such as marketers, to manage content that appears on websites, programs and other digital interfaces for education, commerce, games and other types of publishers – raised $ 47 million, funds it will use to further expand its CMS platform with more functionality. The company’s tools are already used by some 74,000 other companies, including Netflix, Adidas, T-Mobile, Happy Socks and Deliveroo, which together have built about 120,000 projects.
Series B is led by Mubadala Capital and HV Capital, including 3VC and firstminute capital. Funding comes after Serie A. $ 8.5 million in February 2021 also led by Mubadala. To date, Storyblok has raised $ 58 million and has not disclosed its estimate.
Today, there are many headless CMS providers in the world – such companies Satisfied, Prismatic, Contentstack, Slings and many others – competing with Storyblok, but CEO and co-founder Dominique Angerer believes his company represents a new wave of innovation in web development.
Many years ago, companies such as WordPress, Squarespace and Wix, opened up new possibilities in how users can choose from a dynamic range of templates when creating websites. More recently, a new set of startups has used innovations around the API to connect complex technical processes, creating a new approach to creating platforms (the term “headless” was coined by the founder of Commercetools, who, as the name implies, applied the idea originally to e-commerce sites). But they were still a sore point for the wider organization: headless in this sense, perhaps abandoned the need to create a very technical and complex backend to manage payments and databases, but not with the technical intricacies of creating or filling the front of sites.
Here’s the story of Storyblok: Headless Systems is a new generation of web development: Headless CMS, which can also be used by non-technical people such as marketers. Angerer and his co-founder Alexander Feiglstorfer came up with the idea in 2017 when they saw that the systems used at the time still required developers to create and maintain content, so their decision was to create modules to manage the site, blocks that will initially be programmed by the developers (either in the company in question or in a network of 1,000 third parties in the market run by Storyblok), but then it can be updated and otherwise manipulated by marketers.
The end result has gained a lot of traction in part because it bridges a significant gap that exists in many organizations: those who need to touch site content more often are usually not technical teams, but those who manage content. And as digital content spreads to a wider range of formats and screens – games and apps, smartphones and watches, it requires even more input from less technical teams and more workload on development teams.
“We believed very much in Storyblok from day one, and the speed with which the company has managed to scale since our investment in Serie A has been remarkable. Storyblok’s strong organic traction is a true testament to the quality of the product created by Dominic and Alex, and we are excited to continue our partnership with the Storyblok team, ”Fatou Bintou Sagnang, partner at Mubadala Capital Ventures, said in a statement.
The company does not see its mission as part of a wave of low-code and code-free tools: developers still need to be involved in creating the initial blocks that marketers can then upgrade.
Angerer sees the development of a headless structure and the focus on these units as part of “its core functionality,” he said. “Therefore, the transition to creating tools without code will feel like a betrayal of this mission.”
However, third parties have connected to the Storyblok system to create these tools for use by others if they wish.