True Ventures, Data Collective lead $4.2 mln funding in Gradle

True Ventures and Data Collective led a $4.2 million funding round in Gradle Inc., a software build automation business. The company hired executive Charles Warren as chief product officer.

Press Release

Build automation company Gradle Inc. today announced a $4.2 million venture round led jointly by True Ventures and Data Collective (DCVC). The company also joined the exclusive Heavybit group of companies in San Francisco. The goal of the financing is to build on a successful Enterprise business centered in Silicon Valley by releasing a commercial SaaS offering,

“Our mission is to transform how software is built and shipped.” said Hans Dockter, CEO and Founder of Gradle Inc. “We are revolutionizing software delivery by making it a repeatable process with real-time actionable measurements, just like world-class manufacturing systems. The right VC backers, Heavybit’s program and community in San Francisco and the great additions to our executive team are key steps towards realizing this goal.”

Best Build Infrastructure, Largest Community

Most enterprises in the world are using Gradle for their mission-critical software delivery. Gradle is the new market leader for build automation, with 9 million direct downloads so far this year alone, and with over 1 million new direct downloads per month, growing fast. These numbers do not include millions of downloads of Google’s Android Studio, which deeply integrates Gradle, and which in fact requires Gradle to build the vast majority of all Android applications worldwide.

“In the age of continuous delivery, nothing is more critical and challenging than build automation.” said James Lindenbaum, founder of Heavybit and founding CEO of Heroku. “The Gradle team are the clear thought leaders in this domain, providing key infrastructure for the best and most demanding teams in Silicon Valley and the world.”

The advent of Mobile, SaaS, IoT, Containers and DevOps and Enterprise Continuous Delivery (CD) has transformed the requirements for modern build systems. To meet these new requirements, Gradle is relentlessly and continuously improving; Gradle has released 33 new versions since December 2010 (version 0.9) and is now on Gradle version 2.9. This constant innovation and refinement is why the Google Android team chose Gradle as the default build system for all Android developers.

Thought Leadership, Used by the Best Teams in the World

Silicon Valley is defining the new requirements for build automation around Mobile, SaaS, IoT, Containers and DevOps. To meet these complex and constantly changing requirements, companies such as Linkedin, Netflix, Google, and Unity Technologies have formed strategic partnerships with Gradle Inc. to advance the state of the art in build automation. These partnerships accelerate development of open source Gradle and drive the design of to meet the demands of Silicon Valley giants.

“True has a history of backing great open source companies.” said Puneet Agarwal, Partner at True Ventures. “Gradle stands apart because they are backed by Silicon Valley companies as the most advanced build system, including some huge companies we can’t yet mention. We jumped at the chance to invest behind such an incredible team.”

The power of modern build automation enables software organizations to ship high quality software through many channels and platforms faster than the competition. One example of this is at LinkedIn, which executes over 300,000 Gradle builds per week for 2000 Engineers. LinkedIn is able to ship 2,000 software components with 1,000 release builds per day. They have abolished the idea of a software “release date”, preferring to ship software on a continuous basis.

World Class Talent

Gradle’s momentum has attracted world-class talent, including Chief Product Officer Charles Warren, who previously served as SVP of Product Design at and UX lead at Google for Social products. Charles comes to Gradle with a deep background in product design as a former practice lead at IDEO. Also joining the team is Chief Marketing Officer Miko Matsumura, formerly of Software AG, and a member of the original Sun Microsystems Java team. These executives join founder CEO Hans Dockter and founder CTO Adam Murdoch, who together have led the Gradle open source platform to its current success.

“Gradle has leveraged its excellence in open source to become the dominant build automation system in Silicon Valley,” said Matt Ocko, Managing Partner and co-founder of Data Collective. “We know this from the other elite software teams that we at DCVC back. Now we are seeing Gradle — those elite teams’ secret weapon — rapidly expanding in the Fortune 1000. With this funding and support, we are confident Gradle will grow in the enterprise even faster.”

About Gradle

Gradle Inc. is a Silicon Valley startup whose mission is to transform how software is built and shipped. Gradle inc. develops, distributes and supports the Gradle open source project. With over 1 million downloads a month, Gradle is the most popular build automation system world-wide. Powered by a unique Build Programming Language, Gradle also boasts an ecosystem with over six hundred plugins supporting all facets of software development and deployment. Gradle is at the heart of the Continuous Delivery pipeline at some of the most advanced software companies in the world including Linkedin, Netflix, Unity3d and many more. Gradle helps enterprises ship software faster, with fewer defects, and more continuously by unifying and automating build processes and Gradle Inc. provides training, consulting and support for its customers. Our motto is “Build Happiness”. Learn more at and follow us at @Gradle

About True Ventures

Founded in 2005, True Ventures is a Silicon Valley-based venture capital firm that invests in early-stage technology startups. With four funds and approximately $900 million in capital under management, True provides seed and Series A funding to the most talented entrepreneurs in today’s fastest growing markets. With a mission to make the world a better place for entrepreneurs, True encourages each founder’s vision and has built resources to empower the employees, families and communities of its portfolio companies. The firm maintains a strong founder community and offers innovative educational opportunities to its portfolio, helping entrepreneurs achieve higher levels of success and impact. With more than 150 companies funded and multiple companies acquired, the current True portfolio has helped create over 3,500 jobs. To learn more about True Ventures, visit

About Data Collective

Data Collective is a venture capital firm that invests in companies that are driving a big data and deep compute secular trend as enduring as the PC and networking revolutions of the last 30 years. DCVC and its principals have backed brilliant people changing global-scale industries for over twenty years, helping create tens of billions of dollars of wealth for these entrepreneurs while also making the world a markedly better place. DCVC brings to bear a unique model that unites a team of experienced venture capitalists with more than 35 technology executives and experts (CTOs, CIOs, Chief Scientists, Professors at Stanford and Berkeley) with significant tenures at top 100 technology companies and research institutions worldwide. Learn more at and follow us at @dcvc.

About Heavybit

Created by Heroku founder James Lindenbaum, Heavybit is a 9-month program for developer startups. Members get access to a network of industry leaders, weekly talks and office hours, operational help and services, and a community centered around Heavybit’s San Francisco clubhouse. Heavybit’s member companies, entrepreneurs, advisors and investors are shaping the future of software. Check out our library at and follow us @heavybit.