Atlassian puts the ‘i’ in team to build out its products

- September 18, 2020 2 MIN READ
Atlassian, Mike Cannon-Brookes, Scott Farquhar.
Atlassian co-founders and co-CEOs Mike Cannon-Brooke and Scott Farquhar. Photo: supplied
Atlassian says it will invest US$50 million in early-stage startups, but the funds come with a catch – the ventures must all be working on projects that help build out the US-listed tech giant (Nasdaq: TEAM).

The company’s US-based head of corporate development, Chris Height, said in a blog post on the company site that the $50 million Atlassian Ventures fund will focus on “strengthening our ecosystem”.

“We want to elevate the entrepreneurs who are betting big on us,” he said.

“Companies funded by Atlassian Ventures will receive mentorship from our executive team and global exposure at Atlassian events in addition to the capital they need to grow.”

The fund will look to invest in three types of companies:

  • early-stage startups building apps for any of Atlassian’s cloud products such as Jira, Confluence, Bitbucket, or Trello;
  • larger, more established ecosystem product partners scaling their businesses  – Atlassian’s investments in Zoom, Slack, and split are examples – in deals partnered with VC funds; and
  • Atlassian Partner Program members looking to augment their cloud services and/or create new products that support the future of work.

Height said the company had invested in its two US-based startups, Hipporello, a help desk power-up for Trello; and Meetical, an Atlasssian marketplace app for smarter meetings.

“Atlassian Ventures will facilitate our continued investment in the best-of-breed tools and integrations our customers need to fuel the next wave of innovation and manage their work, both now and into the future,” he said.

With the first two investments made in American ventures, it’s likely that the vast amount of the cash from the fund will be used to back US startups to build Atlassian’s capabilities rather than Australian ventures.

Atlassian’s billionaire co-founders, Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar, have been active investors in the Australian startup ecosystem through their private family investment funds, Grok Ventures and Skip Capital.