Kangarootime CEO Scott Wayman has been foreshadowing big things for his Buffalo-based startup.
This month, he delivered.
Kangarootime has closed on $26 million of Series B capital, solidifying the company as one of Buffalo’s leading startup growth stories.
On June 24, Kangarootime also signed a lease to move its headquarters from the 43North incubator in Seneca One Tower to Ellicott Development’s 301 Ohio St. development on the Buffalo River.
The three-story building opened in 2018 and includes 23 apartments and Papi Grande’s restaurant in one of the hottest development neighborhoods in Western New York, with numerous mixed-use projects springing up in recent years.
The company is seeking Start-Up NY approval before it moves into its new 8,384-square-foot space. The state tax breaks program — which all 43North companies qualify for after they win – requires state approval for new locations.
Until that approval is granted, Kangarootime will maintain its space in Seneca One.
Kangarootime builds management software that supports the early childhood education market, though Wayman has said its eventual scope could be much broader. The company, which just hired its 60th employee, has seen significant growth as it focuses on enterprise, or larger multi-site customers, and is also expanding rapidly in the Australian market.
“We are seen now as the signature enterprise software platform in child care,” Wayman told Business First earlier this year. “We have been focused for years on product, engineering and customer feedback – now we have such a great product it’s time for people to learn about it.”
The round, led by Education Growth Partners, will support investment across Kangarootime’s business and the continued global expansion of its customer base. Wayman said it’s likely the company hits 100 employees in 2023. Kangarootime recently added education and data science teams.
“Multisite center management is operationally complex, and child care staff are burdened by time-intensive administrative tasks, reducing time with children under their care,” said Andy Kaplan, managing partner of Education Growth Partners. “Kangarootime’s proprietary capabilities provide an all-in-one solution to support those critical unmet needs.”
No local angel investors participated in the round, but existing investors Cultivation Capital and Rise of the Rest did contribute.
Wayman moved his company to Buffalo in late 2017 after winning $500,000 in the 43North state-funded business competition that aims to boost startup companies in Buffalo.
The company closed on $3.4 million in funding in 2019 and raised $6 million last year. The company’s chief technology officer is Bob Willer, a longtime technology leader at Campus Labs.
Kangarootime now ranks as one of the biggest hits in the 43North portfolio. Other companies that have gone through the competition and established significant local operations outside of Seneca One include CleanFiber, which employs nearly 80 out of its factory in Lackawanna; and HiOperator, which moved in 2021 to the downtown Roblin Building.