Toast, Inc., a restaurant point of sale SaaS platform, has closed on a Series D round of funding worth $1.4 billion. The Round was led by T. Rowe Price and included Tiger Global and previous investors. The July 10 announcement officially elevates the Cambridge, Massachusetts based company to the vaunted status of “unicorn”.
The company had profited from previous rounds of funding, including a $30 million Series B Round in 2016 from Bessemer Venture Partners and GV.
According to a representative from the company, Toast plans to spend the additional investment on new hires and research and development. Representatives also noted that the firm’s sales have increased 150% in the past year, though concrete sales data has yet to be shared with the public.
The company has cast a wide net in the SaaS point of sale space, branching out into other services within the restaurant industry, including display systems which notify customers when their meals are ready and a mobile point of sale device.
Toast, Inc. was founded in 2012 by Steve Fredette, Aman Narang and Jonathan Grimm. Originally, the business began as a version of a mobile app that integrated with a restaurant’s existing point of sale systems. Soon after the company pivoted to producing a full restaurant technology platform.
Today, according to Toast representatives, the platform is used in over 10,000 restaurants nationally, including well-known fast casual chains like Jamba Juice and B. Good Burgers. Toast’s market presence is also strong in over 25 cities nationwide.
In February 2018, TripAdvisor partnered with Toast to offer discounts on TripAdvisor Ads to Toast customers. The $500 discount is designed as an incentive to drive traffic to customer sites by allowing them to be featured in TripAdvisor Ads which are visible at the top of the site’s page results.
In addition to this joint venture, Toast has also more than doubled the number of industry partnerships it is engaged with. The number of partnerships now rests at around 50, including associations with restaurant industry heavyweights like Grubhub.
The Boston area has been home to over five “unicorn” startups in recent years, including sports betting platform DraftKings and Moderna, a biotech firm.