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Onshape raises $80 Million in funding led by Andreessen Horowitz

Silicon Valley firm, invests in Onshape, the first full-­cloud professional 3D CAD system to run on any computer or mobile device and Andreessen Horowitz Partner Peter Levine joins the board.

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Cambridge, Mass based Onshape, the only company in the world 100% focused on cloud and mobile CAD, announced $80 million in new equity financing led by Andreessen Horowitz with participation from existing investors New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Commonwealth Capital Ventures and North Bridge Venture Partners.

To date, Onshape has raised $144 million in total funding. Onshape will use the new investment to significantly expand worldwide sales and marketing efforts and increase its R&D and strong customer support.

Success of the Beta Test Program

This round of funding comes toward the end of Onshape’s highly successful beta test program as the company looks to soon transition to its first formal release. While still in the beta stage, Onshape has already achieved historic firsts for professional 3D CAD:

  • Runs completely within a web browser (on PC, Mac, Linux, and Chromebook)
  • Delivers full CAD capabilities on phones and tablets (Apple iOS and Android)
  • Provides instant and controlled collaboration and sharing
  • Includes built-­in version control
  • Requires absolutely zero IT support (no installation, no licenses, no updates to manage)

Andreessen Horowitz, a leading Silicon Valley firm, has been an early investor in such companies as Facebook, Twitter, Airbnb, Box, GitHub, Pinterest, Skype, Slack, and Zenefits. General Partner Peter Levine will be joining the Onshape Board of Directors.

“We’ve been closely following the CAD industry for a long time,” says Levine. “The Onshape team immediately stood out, having built a robust CAD system using a cloud­-based technical architecture that most had considered impossible. The Onshape product is perfectly suited for an increasingly mobile workforce, which now can create and edit 3D models anywhere, on any device.”

High performance

In just six months after the beta launch, over 10,000 CAD professionals are already using Onshape’s full-cloud collaboration tools to speed up the design of consumer electronics, mechanical machinery, medical devices, machine parts, industrial equipment, and many other products.

01 - Onshape delivers workstation-level performance on entry-level computers, phones and tables and in many cases it is faster than desktop CAD. All rights reserved.

01 – Onshape delivers workstation-level performance on entry-level computers, phones and tables and in many cases it is faster than desktop CAD.

“We are thrilled to have a strong vote of confidence from Andreessen Horowitz as we prepare to move out of beta and expand our global presence,” says Onshape CEO John McEleney. “Their endorsement and the renewed support of our current investors send a powerful message to our customers that Onshape is committed to building a world ­class sales and support team that matches the quality of our CAD.”

“We’re excited to have Andreessen Horowitz on our team,” adds Onshape Founder and Chairman of the Board Jon Hirschtick. “They’re the perfect partner. From nurturing the world’s first web browser to helping build industry titans like Facebook and Twitter, their wealth of experience will allow us to do even more to help our customers design better products.”

To learn more about how full-­cloud CAD is radically changing the way engineers and designers approach their work, visit Onshape.com/customers.

About Andreessen Horowitz

Andreessen Horowitz backs bold entrepreneurs who move fast, think big and are committed to building the next major franchises in technology. Founded by Marc Andreessen and Ben Horowitz, they provide entrepreneurs with access to their deep expertise and insights in innovation, business development, market intelligence, executive and technical talent, and marketing and brand ­building. Find them in Menlo Park, Calif., and at www.a16z.com.

About Onshape

Onshape is the only company in the world 100% focused on cloud and mobile CAD, offering the first and only professional 3D CAD system that lets everyone on a design team work together using any web browser, phone or tablet. Breaking away from the traditional model of desktop-­installed CAD, Onshape has data management and collaboration built in at its core.

For the first time, the CAD system and CAD data live in one place in the cloud, and are never copied anywhere. Everyone on a design team sees and works on the same master CAD data at all times, avoiding confusing checkouts, file copies, and over-writing each other’s work.

Full­-cloud Onshape also eliminates the hassles of installations, license codes and servers, service packs, and add­-on PDM systems. Every Onshape user always works with the same version of Onshape—the latest version.

Companies worldwide rely on Onshape today to speed up the design of consumer electronics, mechanical machinery, medical devices, machine parts, industrial equipment, and many other products. Onshape’s Free Plan also makes it the ideal CAD choice for students and educators to collaborate inside and outside the classroom.

Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Onshape includes key members of the original SolidWorks team plus elite engineers from the cloud, data security and mobile industries.

Architosh Analysis

We published news of this round of financing earlier in late September when we heard word of it from the company blog; however, in this official press announcement, we gain some additional information, namely, that the round of funding herein is apart of a total of $144 million in total funding. This means this is the largest single chunk of funding to date, a sign of acceleration and confidence by investors within the context of information no doubt gained from querying its early beta testers or adopters. And having 10,000 of them is a very large pool from which critical business data could be derived.

Onshape represents the most radical edge of the cloud innovation touching the CAD industry. Being entirely cloud-based it means there is no install of software. This means if your browser won’t load data from a live Internet connection you can’t work. On the other hand, there are major pros behind such a system, as mentioned above. I think a key one is that everyone is always working from exactly the same data and the same app. The zero IT hassle being Onshape is a major cost and time-saver. You don’t need file servers for CAD data if you are on Onshape. On the other hand, you can’t be working on sensitive data that must be stored “on premise.”

Over time some of the weaknesses behind Onshape’s approach may go away entirely or partially. While we wait for that in the future, today what Onshape delivers is a fundamental break away from the notion that the CAD industry is “file centric”—whether discreet CAD file in federated or a non-federated system. — analysis by Anthony Frausto-Robledo, AIA, LEED AP

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