Seven enterprise messaging companies to watch


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Texting for business

As almost everybody is probably now aware, it’s the age of the text message, and the business world is no exception. With more and more enterprise communication taking place via text, it’s not a surprise that a new wave of companies is aiming to make the SMS more business friendly. Here’s a look at a few of the more notable ones.

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Cotap is probably the best-known of the new wave of enterprise messaging startups, with its mobile messaging platform for Android and iOS aiming to become WhatsApp for the business world. It’s a simple enough app, focused on moving brief but important conversations out of email inboxes. FUNDING: Venture-backed, total of $15.5 million

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TigerText provides a focus on regulatory compliance and a million-dollar indemnity against HIPAA breaches, befitting its apparent focus on the healthcare sector. Available for iOS, Android and in a web app. FUNDING: A little less than $30 million in venture capital, as of January 2014.

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Another company whose offerings are heavily targeted at the healthcare sector, Imprivata offers a wide range of messaging products, available to both large hospitals and smaller practices. It also incorporates more advanced, healthcare-specific features, like electronic medical record compatibility. Available for PC, Mac, iOS and Android.

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A Cambridge, Mass.-based startup, HeyWire released a business-focused enterprise messaging platform in 2013. It uses a cloud-based system to register employee phone numbers and assign them to their own messaging identity, accessible via the web, Android or iOS. FUNDING: Venture funding of $13.3 million.

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More specialized than some of the above tools, Waggl is essentially a polling service used to quickly get group input on a specific question. It’s entirely web- and email-based – no smartphone apps here. FUNDING: $1.1 million in venture funding.

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Less a texting platform than an enterprise-focused social network, a la Yammer, Convo nevertheless includes messaging functionality. Lots of handy features, like document annotation and guest invites – to bring clients into a conversation – are available. FUNDING: $5 million in venture funds, as of September 2013.

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