SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 10, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Balloon, the first insight mobility platform, today announced that it has raised $2.1 million in Seed funding. The funding round was co-led by Jason Calacanis' LAUNCH and Wavemaker Partners with participation from Luma Launch, Imagination Capital, Streamlined Ventures, XFactor Ventures, Matt Mullenweg, and others. The company also announced its rebrand from Balloonr.
Balloon's software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution enables companies, including Capital One, Thumbtack, Google, US Cellular, and the LA Angels, to share, collaborate, and vote on input anonymously. In doing so, the platform's streamlined workflows eliminate costly biases (e.g., groupthink, anchoring, over-communication), increases thought diversity, and amplifies the strongest insights.
"Our mission is to transform how teams interact by solving for cognitive biases, group dynamics, and fears," said Co-founder & CEO Amanda Greenberg. "The need for true data is driving company leaders to adopt various surveying and communication tools, but none of them address core systemic organizational issues. Balloon is the first platform to enable insights to move freely through organizational strata – not based on where they came from, but on their merit."
Over $3.5 billion is spent on team collaboration applications like Slack, SurveyMonkey, and Hangouts. Despite this, in recent studies from Bain & Company and Northwestern University, it was reported that approximately 15 percent of an organization's time is spent in meetings, and in an 8-person meeting, only three of the eight people do 70 percent of the talking. With Balloon, companies see an average of 78 percent of people collaborating and evaluating regardless of group size.
"Our goal was to build a product that ensures everyone can contribute – introverts, interns, and cross-functional teams. To achieve that end, we designed the entire platform based on hundreds of teamwork, collaboration, and bias mitigation studies," said Co-founder & CTO, Noah Bornstein. "Today, over 80 percent of the information shared on Balloon is brand new and our streamlined workflow reduces meeting time by 70 percent."
The core features of Balloon's platform include:
Flights: To kick off, employees are asked to participate in a flight, which is a question or set of questions with a start and end time. Flight authors can choose from a library of flight templates based on specific use cases and functions.
Balloons: Employees anonymously create and launch "balloons" with their feedback, responses, or information for each flight. Employees do so at their own pace and without visibility into other responses to avoid anchoring bias.
Collaboration: After employees submit their balloons, the balloons are visible to everyone to anonymously ask questions or provide additional feedback on balloons.
Pumps: Employees can anonymously provide their vote or support to a particular balloon by giving it a "pump."
Results: When the flight is over, the balloons are scored based on the number of pumps and overall approval. The ranked results indicate group priorities, buy-in, and consensus for each balloon.
About Balloon Balloon is an insight mobility platform that uncovers transformational thinking and drives growth. It allows teams to contribute true input and evaluate it on merit, so everyone can align and win together. Through Balloon, teams share and vote on input anonymously, which eliminates costly biases, increases thought diversity, and amplifies the strongest insights. The platform functions through a quick, phased process that also streamlines workflows, leading to fewer meetings and great results, faster.