SAN FRAN — Pesto, the digitally native, authentically human workplace, today announced $5M in seed funding led by Jett Fein at Headline, with participation from Manu Kumar at K9 Ventures and many other leading funds and angels.
Founded in 2020, Pesto was built to bridge the gap between in-person and remote work. Today, the company offers a comprehensive digital workplace for distributed teams that addresses common challenges like communication friction, video fatigue, and privacy concerns.
With Pesto, employees build a digital workplace that promotes intuitive and authentic communication and collaboration. Employees customize their avatar in the workplace, which takes the place of video to be less fatiguing and more personable. Then, they create a variety of rooms – organized spaces for audio-first collaboration that include screenshare, video, games, or spatial features. Together, avatars and rooms empower employees to work together in ways that are more organic and immersive.
“We’ve undergone the biggest change in the way people work since the Industrial Revolution. Offices remain at low capacity and most employees are unlikely to go back, but we’re still using tools built around a primarily in-office experience,” said Doug Safreno, the CEO of Pesto. “We envision a world where remote work is more effective and less lonely than the office; a world where interacting in a digital workplace is more powerful and convenient even when people happen to be physically colocated. We are excited to partner with some of the best investors in the business to bring this vision to life.”
Since its founding, Pesto has added over 10,000 teams; in 2021, Pesto users logged over 100,000,000 voice and video minutes. Looking ahead, the company plans to use the latest funding to increase hiring efforts and fuel product development, particularly by building features that deepen the experience of a workplace metaverse and enhancing the product for bigger companies with significant cross-team collaboration.
“In our unexpected shift to remote and hybrid work, many of the tools we rely on – email, instant messaging, video conferencing – have become two dimensional and stale,” said Jett Fein, Partner at Headline. “Pesto is a reflection of the opportunities in our new reality, and merges the best of digital and in-person interaction to make our distributed work experiences more human. We’re excited to watch Doug, Vivek and Daniel continue to build upon and grow the platform in the coming years.”