Pendo overlooks Brexit to select London as European base

US tech firm sets up shop in London ahead of planned expansion across Europe despite political and economic uncertainty surrounding the UK's impending exit from the EU


Pendo, a US-based cloud provider of digital products, has opted to open its first European office in London, despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

Based in Raleigh, North Carolina, Pendo has so far raised $106m in funding and has been backed by Battery Ventures, Spark Capital, Meritech Capital and Sapphire Ventures. Its headcount reached 300 people in the last fiscal year, and the company already operates offices in Raleigh, San Francisco, New York and Herzliya, Israel.

"I know we are bucking the trend," admitted Pendo CEO and co-founder Todd Olson about the company's decision to establish an office in the UK ahead of the country's exit from the EU, which despite continued political uncertainty is still scheduled to go ahead on March 29.

"Most businesses are watching and waiting until after Brexit; others have contingency planned by establishing offices in other European cities, and here we are coming to London as our gateway to Europe," he noted.

"We've always done things a little differently at Pendo – we chose Raleigh instead of Silicon Valley, and we focus on what our customers need rather than what our competitors are doing. So far it's paid off."

Pendo has ambitious plans for growth in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and will attempt to triple its customer base in 2019. It hired software industry veteran Perry Gale as EMEA managing director, and has relocated a team of US sales and customer success team members to its new office in London's trendy Shoreditch neighborhood.

The company said it planned to end the year with a team of 12 in London.

"As a global center of business, and a hub for B2B software companies, London boasts the largest and most diverse talent pool in Europe," commented Olson. "The people who live and work here hail from around the world. They speak multiple languages and have connections across Europe and the Middle East."

Along with the announcement of its London office opening, Pendo reported highlights from its fiscal year, which ended January 31, 2019, and demonstrated growth in bookings, customers, fundraising and headcount.

Despite enjoying rapid growth in 2018, Olson described 2018 as "a foundational year", highlighting the company's "huge investments in our own product, team and real estate" as it lays the groundwork for future growth. 

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