Kapwing, an online multimedia editing tool, announced on Sept. 24, 2019 that it raised an $11 million Series A funding round.
Kapwing is a browser-based video editing and meme generation tool, providing creators with a simple, accessible way to create and share their designs. Kapwing is free, but offers a Pro version for $20 per month. The Pro version lets users remove the Kapwing watermark, gain access to unlimited content storage, and more.
Since launching in October 2017, more than 9 million images, videos, and GIFs had been created on the Kapwing platform. This funding allows Kapwing to focus on growing its engineering team to continue developing new features for the tool, expanding existing capabilities, and gaining more users.
The round of funding was backed by CRV, an investment firm which earlier this year invested in Patreon, a subscription management platform that helps artists and designers share content with paying users. CRV joins two other recent investors, Kleiner Perkins and Sinai Ventures, who funded Kapwing on July 16, 2018, with a $1.7 million seed round. This brings Kapwing a total of $12.7 million in funding over two rounds in the past two years.
There is plenty of opportunity for innovation in this market that requires catering to the average social media user. The typical user doesn’t have the skills necessary to use video editor tools with more robust, complex features. Free online multimedia editors have a smaller learning curve and often integrate with major social media platforms for streamlined creation sharing.
However, with this funding round, there are also plenty of opportunities for Kapwing to start branching out to expert designers that are comfortable working with complex video editing features. Adobe is an example of a vendor that scaled well to adjust to split industry needs.
Adobe created Adobe Spark in May 2016 as a way for users to create social media graphics, web pages, or videos without needing any training or tutorials to navigate. Kapwing could currently be emulating Adobe Spark’s model due to its success—Adobe Spark has the second highest G2 score in the Video Editing category as of Q3 2019. It’s also trending No. 1 in Momentum on the G2 Grid. Alongside Adobe Spark is Adobe Premiere Pro, a more complex video editing tool compared to Spark. Adobe is touching both sides of the user base spectrum and is dominating the market according to G2’s Grid® Report for Video Editing.
Kapwing’s new funding could help it gain more market presence in the crowded multimedia editing industry if it chooses to find its presence with video editing experts, as well as professionals in the social media marketing industry like Adobe has. By improving its Pro version, Kapwing could cater to the trained video editors that need a tool that goes beyond standard features. Additionally, Kapwing’s meme generation features are unique but very in demand. By expanding its key features such as its meme editor, it caters to marketing professionals that focus on gaining brand attention online.
While competing with a household name such as Adobe is difficult, it could beat out competitors such as iMovie for offering an easily accessible, browser-based tool as opposed to a desktop application. In addition, Kapwing’s funders likely saw huge potential in its caption and meme generation features, the bread and butter of this platform that easily sets it apart from its competitors. This focus could prove influential to the market and its competitors.