AllThingsD has reported, and we have now confirmed, that OMERS Ventures, a Canada-based VC, has taken a $20-million investment in HootSuite, the social media management platform, with one estimate valuing the company at around $200 million.
The investment is a secondary one, and will be coming in the form of purchases of equity from HootSuite’s existing shareholders. These include employees as well as existing investors. That list includes Blumberg Capital, Hearst Ventures, Geoff Entress and Millennium Technology Value Partners, who collectively have invested $4.9 million into the company: $3 million in debt and a $1.9 million capital investment.
The Vancouver-based company is expected to be making a formal announced at 5 AM PT today.
This deal is one of the largest secondary VC investments to take place in the Canadian market, and follows reports of another big secondary market investment in the social media space, Foursquare.
OMERS Ventures is the VC arm of the Ontario Municipal Employee Retirement System, one of the bigger pension funds in Canada.
Reuters is reporting that Blumberg is not among the VCs that have cashed out in the deal, and it’s not yet clear whether any of the existing VCs have been bought out.
And HootSuite CEO Ryan Holmes is also staying after the transaction: “Ryan Holmes remains committed to building a billion dollar company, and this new investment partnership marks a new milestone in reaching that goal,” the company said in an emailed statement to TechCrunch.
HootSuite currently has 140 employees and expects to bring that number up to 240 this year. The investment is a testament to the ongoing attention in (and increasing value of) companies that are riding the social media wave and creating services to make money out of it.
HootSuite gives users the ability to monitor social media interaction across various networks, such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. It also provides custom analytics and allows clients of its dashboard to do things like give multiple users the ability to collaborate on updating a company’s social profile, schedule campaigns around messages and so on. It also offers mobile apps.
Customers include PepsiCo, Fox and the NBA among others.
We hope to be speaking to the company directly to get more details.