Zapier is a developer of workflow automation tools that automate the workflows of web applications. It is often described as a translator between web APIs and connects over 2,000 apps to help people be productive and increase automation in workflows. Zapier's integrations include applications such as Salesforce, Intuit, Google, and Dropbox and allow users to move data between them automatically.
Zapier was founded in 2011 by Wade Foster, Mike Knoop, and Bryan Helmig. Unlike the company's peers, Zapier raised a single funding round for $1.3 million and stopped raising money after that. However, by 2021, Zapier is noted as one of the bigger businesses in their industry, with a name that has become almost commonplace, and reached more than $100 million in annualized recurring revenue, with a valuation of $5 billion.
Zapier's platform is a workflow automation platform that supports integration and automation amongst thousands of popular apps. The automated workflows are set up through what Zapier calls "Zaps." Each Zap is made of two elements: a trigger and the subsequent action. The trigger is the event that sets the subsequent action into motion and offers the automation. The platform is built to be easy to use, being a low-code platform with a drag-and-drop editor to help users visualize and customize automations and create unique logic to the if-then rules of the platform for custom actions.
Zapier also announced a plugin with ChatGPT, allowing users to create workflow automations or automate tasks within the ChatGPT interface. The plugin offers users the ability to not only automate tasks amongst web applications from the ChatGPT interface but also to interact with those applications from the ChatGPT interface. This allows users to execute any of the actions they are used to executing through Zapier's platform, but instead through the ChatGPT chatbot.
Zapier's platform also allows users to build a customer AI chatbot powered by GPT 3.5. The interface is built on Zapier's no-code app builder, allowing users to create and launch a custom chatbot with limited coding capability. Further, the chatbot can then integrate the user's data or OpenAI models to generate on-brand responses, while allowing the user to control what the chatbot can use in terms of data for responses. This is intended to allow users to align the chatbot with the look, feel, and branding of the user or their organization.
Zapier was started in Columbia, Missouri, by cofounders Wade Foster, Bryan Helmig, and Mike Knoop, as part of the first Startup Weekend Columbia in 2011. After being turned down for the Y Combinator Winter 2012 funding cycle, they built their initial prototype with twenty-five apps and were accepted to the Summer 2012 funding cycle. As a result of the acceptance, the company was relocated to Mountain View, California, in spring 2012. In October of the same year, Zapier received a $1.3 million seed funding round led by global venture investment firm Bessemer Venture Partners. Zapier reached profitability in 2014.
In March 2017, the company made headlines by offering a "de-location package," consisting of $10,000 in moving reimbursement to employees who desired to move away from the San Francisco Bay Area. While Zapier's entire workforce works remotely, the package was a result of increasing housing costs and the company's desire to help its local employees improve their standard of living. Shortly after, job applications increased by 30 percent, but as of January 2018, no employees have taken advantage of the offer.
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March 8, 2021