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A $5 Million Investment for Progressive Political Software Firm Salsa Labs

BY Nick Judd | Monday, August 1 2011

One of the most widely used purveyors of political software for progressive causes today announced an investment deal that essentially doubles the size of its business.

Salsa Labs, the company that sells online tools to nonprofits and progressive political organizations, today announced that New Jersey-based investment firm Edison Ventures will be pumping $5 million into their business ahead of 2012. PdF Network members would know that Salsa previously pegged their annual revenue at around $5 million and has around 2,000 clients. The company grew from 30 to 50 employees over the course of the last year, and plans to put some of this new investment towards hiring 100 people through the 2012 elections.

"We see this great opportunity leading to the 2012 elections and just to help out so many more organizations and candidates," Salsa Labs co-founder Chris Lundberg told me today.

"It'll look to us probably doubling the size of our business," he said later on.

Salsa is working on a slew of new features for the 2012 election cycle, mostly around new donation management features, better analytics, and improvements to Salsa's back end. The Edison Ventures funding will allow them to roll out those improvements more quickly, Lundberg told me.

Some of this funding will also go towards infrastructure improvements. The day after some major primary races in the U.S. last year, Salsa's flagship platform went down for five hours, leaving progressives including the AFL-CIO, ActBlue, Sen. Chuck Schumer's re-election campaign, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and many others without access. It wasn't the only outage for the platform.

"At the end of last summer and last fall we had a couple outages," Lundberg admitted. "We're absolutely going to be spending money on more infrastructure, more hardware."

This is the latest step in a rapid path to growth for the firm, based in Washington, D.C. with offices in Austin, Texas. Salsa landed AFL-CIO, the massive federation of labor unions, as one of several new clients last year. Lundberg says this is the first time that the firm has taken an outside investment — it bootstrapped up to its current size.

This post has been updated.