A trusted team and a providential pivot



Personalized mobile messaging platform for innovative e-commerce and retail brands


Open rates driven


Click through rates driven


ROI driven


With the right founders, prior success can be a leading indicator of future success but not an excuse to rubber-stamp ideas. The Attentive story shows how Bain Capital kept close ties to a winning team of innovators but challenged them to make their next technology business plan more unconventional.

A decade ago, the founders of Attentive launched a company called TapCommerce, a mobile ad startup that Bain Capital backed with a Series A round of $6.5 million for 20% ownership. A year later, it was acquired by Twitter for $100 million. We kept in touch with the TapCommerce founders and periodically discussed ideas. After a few years, the founders left Twitter and pitched a new concept: mobile tools to help manage frontline workers. Bain Capital initially declined after our deep dive into the space convinced us that the concept was not differentiated enough in a crowded market.

The founders took our feedback and pivoted to a better idea: a personalized SMS messaging platform for e-commerce and retail brands. This idea excited us because of our conviction that digital marketing was in need of a disruptive SMS platform for brands and retailers to use as an alternative to email outreach.

The new company, Attentive, was an immediate hit. Our due diligence revealed that marketers loved the Attentive technology because it enabled them to achieve deeper levels of engagement by sending personalized text messages to their customers, including notices about exclusive sales or product recommendations.

Attentive is turning out to be one of the great second efforts in tech startups, and represents a true, active partnership between Bain Capital and a trusted team of entrepreneurs.


Attentive has been one of the fastest-growing, most successful companies I think we've ever invested in. They ended 2021 with around $250 million in run-rate revenue, over 5,000 customers, growing over 100% year over year. It's an extraordinary story. Our original investment was at a $50 million valuation and the company was most recently valued at over $10 billion.

Scott Friend
Partner, Bain Capital Ventures