NEW YORK — Lightyear has raised $13.1 million in Series A funding to continue digitizing how enterprises procure and manage telecom infrastructure services. The raise comes on the heels of a late 2020 seed round, and reflects massive utilization growth of Lightyear’s platform, along with rapid feature expansion that has moved Lightyear beyond procurement into implementation project management and network inventory management. In order to keep pace with escalating demand for its solutions, Lightyear will use the investment to boost hiring and resources in development and go-to-market functions.
Lightyear’s software allows enterprises to buy and manage network infrastructure services such as dedicated internet, WAN connectivity, colocation, and voice systems from an easy-to-use SaaS platform. After a service contract is signed, Lightyear’s platform also helps customers project manage implementations, track network inventory, handle carrier issues post-install, and even automate renewal bidding.
The Series A funding round was led by Ridge Ventures with participation from Zigg Capital, Barry Sternlicht (CEO of Starwood), Gokul Rajaram (DoorDash exec, Coinbase Board), Michael Rapino (CEO of Live Nation), Marcus Ridgway (Invitation Homes Founder), and Stephen Klenert (Founder of Atlantic Metro). Existing investors Amplo, Ludlow Ventures, Susa Ventures, Operator Partners (founders of Flatiron Health), Contrary Capital, and Darco Capital also participated.
Ridge Ventures Partner and serial CIO-turned-investor Yousuf Khan will join the Lightyear board, driven by years of pain as an IT executive in charge of network procurement.
“As a former CIO and someone who has led global technology operations, it’s refreshing to see Lightyear transforming the way business infrastructure gets bought, while delighting customers with a great user experience. I wish Lightyear existed during my years as a CIO” said Khan. “We were so impressed with Dennis, Ryan and the entire team when we met and couldn’t be more proud to be part of the journey.”
“We started Lightyear to take the ridiculously painful but immensely important process of network procurement and make it transparent and customer-centric. When the opportunity arose to bring a tenured CIO along for the journey, it was a no-brainer. Yousuf’s passion for Lightyear is critical validation for our team’s vision to transform this trillion dollar space,” said Dennis Thankachan, Co-Founder and CEO of Lightyear.
Today, Lightyear boasts 500+ telecom and IT vendor relationships spanning the full suite of enterprise needs and one of the most comprehensive data sets in telecommunications. Lightyear’s customers include Roadrunner Transportation, StockX, Curology, Lime, Campus Apartments, and many more.