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Private equity firm Advent International has led a $160 million (Rs 1,177 crore) funding round in Zenoti, propelling the software provider to salons and spas into the unicorn club of startups with a valuation at least $1 billion.

Advent International made the investment through Advent Tech and its affiliate Sunley House Capital, it said in a statement.

Existing investors Tiger Global and Steadview Capital also participated in the Series D funding round.

The fundraising takes the total amount that Zenoti has raised so far to a total of about $250 million.

The funds will be used to continue scaling operations, support research and development and to fuel further artificial innovations, the company said. Zenoti will also pursue inorganic growth opportunities.

“The wellness industry is ripe for disruption, particularly as COVID-19 has made it more important than ever to eliminate unnecessary face-to-face interactions wherever possible,” said Eric Wei, a managing director on Advent’s technology team in Palo Alto. 

Zenoti provides software services to businesses such as salon and spa chains which let customers schedule appointments, make self-check-ins and automatic payments.

It reported a 100% year-over-year growth in 2020, the company said. 

Its clients include European Wax Center, Hand & Stone, Massage Heights, Rush Hair & Beauty, Sono Bello, Hair Cuttery, Profile by Sanford and, most recently, Toni&Guy, the company said. 

“Our industry, one traditionally slow to progress technologically, is passionately embracing it (tech) in the pandemic in order to seamlessly and safely connect with customers,” Sudheer Koneru, CEO at Zenoti, said. 

Advent International recently invested in California and Bengaluru-based Tekion Corp, another software as a service firm (SaaS) in October from its global fund. 

The PE firm’s core focus sectors include business and financial services, healthcare, industrial, retail, consumer and leisure, and technology.

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