Churchdesk answers prayers to take churches into digital age with $2M purse

The Copenhagen-based startup closed their funding round led by early-stage venture firm Mangrove Capital Partners have said that they will be using the funding to expand its product and marketing team, accelerate roll-out of new product enhancements and drive expansion across Europe.

ChurchDesk is a cloud-based church management platform with an integrated set of tools that take care of ecclesiastical admin, increase transparency and improve information flow between staff, volunteers and the community. The tools include a shared intranet, digital calendar, file manager and messaging system for email and SMS, as well as a content management system (CMS) for effortless website and campaign management. Thanks to the ChurchDesk mobile app, available on iOS and Android, righteous work can be carried out while on the move.

Christian Steffensen founded the company in 2010, having seen how his mother struggled to run her church in Denmark. Steffensen now has over a thousand churches across Denmark, Germany and the United Kingdom, with 10,000 staff users delivering over 50k events every month through the platform. It also counts Klaus Nyengaard, previously chief executive of Just Eat, as its chairman.

“The challenges that clergy face are two-fold – they have dwindling congregations because they lack CRM or marketing tools and they’re poorly managed,” comments Christian Steffensen, CEO at ChurchDesk. “My mother is 62, she’s been a pastor all her life and is a theologian. She’s hardly going to reinvent the way her industry operates but she does have an iPhone and an iPad.”

Mangrove Capital Partners, an early backer of Skype and, led the investment. Klaus Nyengaard also joined the round having previously provided seed capital together with Accelerace, the Scandinavian accelerator.

“This really is an intriguing business. It’s already the dominant provider of church management systems and will shortly have an incredible network effect amongst both church workers and attendees,” comments Michael Jackson, partner at Mangrove Capital Partners. “The scope for growth here is phenomenal – it’s a $370bn market globally and has simply been overlooked.”

“The Church of England has twenty thousand churches and an enormous amount of money but it’s terrible at engaging its audience. Churches are organizing all kinds of events and activities but people are largely unaware,” continues Steffensen. “Having focused on creating a church management system, we’re now building it out so churchgoers can use it to connect with their pastors as well as other churchgoers.”

Image: Church by Shutterstock