Inrix Lands $37M, Plans to Step on the Gas Expanding Global Traffic Data

7/25/11Follow @curtwoodward

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it has to pay for licensing the technology. Microsoft also doesn’t have an ownership position in the company, Mistele says.

The $37 million Series D round was led by Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield, & Byers and August Capital. TechCrunch reports that Inrix’s valuation after this round of financing was pegged at just under $500 million. While he wouldn’t talk specific revenue or profit numbers, Mistele quipped that ”I can say we’re doing better than Zillow did when they filed to go public,” a semi-cheeky metric that I’ve actually heard a few times since the unprofitable online real estate company hit the public markets with only about $30 million in revenue.

And speaking of IPOs: Earlier this year, Mistele told TechFlash that Inrix was looking toward an initial public offering sometime in the next two years, but today he says that could come quicker—a welcome sign for the Seattle-area technology scene, which hadn’t seen a true homegrown IPO in a long time until Zillow (NASDAQ: Z) went public last week.

“It’s our aspiration to go public sooner rather than later, and we believe this speeds up that process,” Mistele says.

That’s quite a turnaround for a company that, when it was founded in 2004, had a rough time raising money.

“I think 2004 was a great time to start a business. It was a horrible time to raise money. In fact, we went to 70 venture capital firms and were told no 70 times,” Mistele says. “But getting the business started then allowed us to get to critical mass, allowed us to get to cash-flow positive before 2008 and 2009, survive the downturn and come out of it much, much stronger.”

Mistele says the company has about 100 people and expects to more than double in the next year. Revenue growth, he said, might not stay at the 85 percent rate seen recently with the amount of growth Inrix is predicting, but should stay above 50 percent.

Curt Woodward is a senior editor for Xconomy based in Boston. Email: cwoodward@xconomy.com Follow @curtwoodward

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