NEW YORK— Polywork, the professional network, just announced $28 million in Series B funding. The round was co-led by Nat Friedman (former GitHub CEO) and Caffeinated Capital with participation from existing and new investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Baron Davis, Bungalow Capital, Daniel Gross, Elad Gil, Fidji Simo, Maverick Carter and the founders of Stripe, Lyft, Clubhouse, Instacart, Lattice, Minted, and Divvy Homes.
Polywork was built on the fact that a whole generation of people no longer define themselves through the traditional lens of a 9-5 job and are now seizing the opportunity to collaborate with others on passions outside of the 9-5 – a need unmet by today’s professional networks. While there are more online communities than ever, finding a place to discover others to collaborate with remains a challenge. Unlike other networks, Polywork is uniquely designed to connect professionals on opportunities outside the traditional 9-5, from speaking on podcasts, partnering on side projects, finding beta testers, speaking at events, mentoring and more.
“Polywork is the place where people can come to me for the things I do beyond my job title. I design at Snap, but I’m also an angel investor, Airbnb host, mentor and advisor to startups. On Polywork, I can easily share all these aspects of what I do, like photos of my house remodel instead of my design portfolio. However the main value to me is it’s really easy to search and find other designers open to my other interests, like real estate investing, and founders looking for startup advisors,” said Stephanie Engle, Product Designer at Snap. “Polywork is the place I can figure out what people in my network are secretly working on and open to doing.”Stephanie Engle
“Polywork is solving a real pain point in the professional networking space. Existing platforms connect people to full-time opportunities, but people need a place to connect with others around opportunities outside of the traditional 9-5,” said investor Nat Friedman. “Everyone’s working 9-5 but also starting a podcast, a side project, angel investing or looking for co-founders. I’ve gotten to work with Peter and the Polywork team over the last year – and the pace at which they are executing matched with the traction they’ve seen this year made this a partnership we are incredibly excited about.”
Following Polywork’s Andreessen Horowitz-led Series A, this Series B round brings the company’s total financing to $44.5 million. With this latest funding round, the company will further address the needs of the new generation focused on empowering professionals to collaborate, continue to invest in building out the platform, and expand its team.
“What Polywork does is really simple – it helps people discover opportunities to collaborate with other professionals, outside of their 9-5,” said Polywork founder and CEO, Peter Johnston. “Where do people go today for example to find professionals open to speaking on podcasts? Or open to partnering on side projects or speaking at events? There are literally thousands of ways professionals collaborate today yet existing networks focus on connecting people in only one way – full time work. If LinkedIn was built for the 9-5 generation, we are built for the collaboration generation.”
“Online professional networks are stuck serving an idea of what work looked like two decades ago. There is a big white space to fill to create a platform that reflects how people work and collaborate today,” said Sriram Krishnan, General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz and Polywork board member. “It’s no easy task to build a professional network from the ground up, but we believe Peter and the team at Polywork have tapped into what today’s generation of workers are looking for to be successful in the decades to come.”
To drive the next phase of Polywork’s professional network, Polywork will also be introducing the private beta of Clubs, dedicated group spaces designed to drive collaboration among professionals based on their passions. Curated to combine specific interests and expertise, and vetted through badge-based entry and proof of experience, Clubs are designed for meaningful connection with moderators facilitating active group collaboration.
Polywork is the professional network for multi-hyphenates – those defying the traditional 9-5 by pursuing multiple passions. The company is transforming online professional networking by giving professionals a space to express and celebrate their full identities and to connect with, learn from and collaborate with other professionals who share their interests. Polywork, which has raised $44.5M to date, is backed by Andreessen Horowitz, Bungalow Capital, Caffeinated Capital, Elad Gil, Goldcrest Capital, Worklife VC, and the founders of Behance, Twitch, YouTube, Clubhouse, Divvy Homes, Instacart, Instagram, Stripe, Reddit,Instacart, Minted and Product Hunt.
For more information about Polywork visit polywork.com.