Blackstone Invests in Outsourcing Startup TaskUs

The $250 million investment comes amid "massive consolidation" in the business process outsourcing industry.
Matthew HellerAugust 10, 2018

Private equity giant Blackstone Group is investing $250 million in TaskUs, giving the startup a financial boost amid a wave of consolidation in the business process outsourcing industry.

TaskUs, which was founded 10 years with a $10,000 investment from its two-co founders, provides content moderation for social networks and handles back-office customer support for some of the world’s largest tech companies.

“TaskUs is already a major player in the outsourcing business, with big-name digital brands including Tinder, MailChimp and MoviePass among its clients,” the Los Angeles Times said, noting that revenue is projected to reach $225 million to $250 million this year, from $117 million in 2017 and $80 million in 2016.

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But according to the Times, the company needed a deep-pocket investor with competitors announcing major deals this year, including French outsourcing firm Teleperformance’s acquisition of Intelenet from Blackstone for $1 billion and Synnex’s purchase of Convergys for $2.8 billion.

“This is an industry that is undergoing massive consolidation at the upper end of the market,” said Bryce Maddock, TaskUs’ co-founder and chief executive. “We want to compete with the largest players on a global scale. In order to do that, we needed a backer who could help us get global fast.”

In a news release, Maddock said Blackstone fit the bill because “because they have a track record at building category-defining businesses.”

“With access to capital from Blackstone, as well our two decades of experience with BPO companies, we are confident that our investment in TaskUs can significantly accelerate the company’s growth trajectory,” Blackstone Senior Managing Director Amit Dixit said.

TaskUs now employs about 12,000 people in the U.S., the Philippines, Mexico and Taiwan. According to Maddock, content moderation now accounts for about 40% of its business. “We do content moderation for almost every major social network and it’s the fastest growing part of our business today,” he told TechCrunch.

The Blackstone investment will boost TaskUs’ ability to invest in new technology and expand its business in Europe, India and Latin America, Maddock said.