Twirl, a fully managed data platform, announces the closing of a €2.3 million pre-seed funding round led by Creandum, the European investor and early backer of Spotify and Klarna, with participation from Cocoa and other angel investors.
Fuelled by fresh funding, Twirl will now continue to grow its team and open up for more customers to join its beta program through the sign-up form on twirldata.com.
The mission remains the same, according to its founders, i.e. to solve every company’s data engineering problems. “Today you can launch a web app in 15 minutes, but setting up a data platform often takes weeks or months. The best tech companies have figured it out – but only after investing hundreds of person-years developing powerful tools and platforms. Twirl lets any company fast-forward to a mature data environment so they can focus on their core business.” says Eric Hansander, co-founder and CEO of Twirl.
Twirl is a platform that enables data teams to build production-ready data pipelines from day one. The company was founded in Stockholm in 2022 by Eric Hansander and Rebecka Storm, who met when building out the data science team at Swedish fintech unicorn iZettle, later acquired by PayPal.
As they built data teams and platforms at other companies, they became frustrated by the amount of upfront data engineering work required to get data efforts off the ground, leading to poor ROI. Building unique data products requires huge investments, and most companies fail to hire the right talent, find profitable use cases and turn their data into a revenue-generating asset. Instead, they get stuck building complex infrastructure that mainly powers internal dashboards.
“So many companies have over-invested in their data stacks. It’s easy to see why: you start simple with easy-to-use tools, but as you run into their limits you keep having to add more tools and more code to glue them together. And you still have to engineer your own solutions to fill the gaps. We built Twirl to solve all the common data engineering challenges that typically appear, once and for all, so you don’t have to.” says Rebecka Storm, co-founder of Twirl.
Eric and Rebecka spoke to hundreds of data practitioners and it became obvious that most tech companies spend thousands of hours building internal data tooling they think is unique, but that ends up looking remarkably similar. They realized that if companies can avoid having to build the tooling themselves, the ROI equation suddenly makes sense. Data teams can then focus on building valuable business-specific data applications instead. Thus Twirl was born.
“Twirl offers the data superpowers of companies like Spotify and Kry to any company, without needing a huge team of data engineers. In just a few months, the team has built a best-in-class platform and got customers up and running, and it’s hard to imagine better positioned co-founders to build this,” says Sabina Wizander, Partner at Creandum.
“Rebecka and Eric are a uniquely powerful founding duo. They know what they are doing – after years of leading data teams at some of the world’s greatest tech scale-ups, they are now building the data framework they always wished existed. And they know how to do it: the intensity, speed and quality of their execution is remarkable,“ says Carmen Rico, founder at Cocoa Ventures.
With Twirl, data teams can develop and test entire data pipelines from their laptops, seamlessly combining any programming language like SQL and Python, and mixing batch and stream processing. CI/CD is built in, so when deploying Twirl automatically runs the code continuously – as a service – in the cloud. It replaces the need for stitching together multiple tools for niche purposes like Airflow, dbt, Docker and Kubernetes.
Current customers have used Twirl for everything from automating credit decisions to the aggregation and display of user-facing statistics and progress reports in a language-learning app. For some customers, the product completely replaces the need to hire a data engineering team.