I sometimes tease my sales team that the end of the year is a time for rest for everyone but them, as they close their final deals. But the truth is that all of us—sales teams, engineers, marketers, support staff, CEOs—need time to consider the year that’s just ended and the new one that’s beginning. That pause and reflection is an essential part of growth.

2017 was another high-growth year for SparkPost. We delivered more email than ever before—over 150 billion messages for the year. Our business continues to grow—especially our cloud annual recurring revenue (ARR). The vast majority of our new customers are SparkPost cloud customers, and two-thirds of our annual sales are now in the cloud.

That growth would not be possible without the trust that our community of customers has placed in us. SparkPost’s customers are a remarkable, diverse group of innovators—and each understands how crucial API-driven email delivery is to the success of their businesses. Companies like NetSuite, Cisco, Netflix and LendingTree are among those who joined us this year.

Of course, it’s the work by developers at businesses large and small that continues to amaze me. Developers are the heart and soul of our business. This past year, we were delighted to contribute back in the form of open source innovations like the HEML responsive email markup language, as well as participating in grassroots community events. (If you happen to be in San Francisco, be sure to check out the brand new #emailgeeksSF group!)

Our partnerships continue to be an essential part of helping customers of all sizes succeed. This year, SparkPost was certified as an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Advanced Technology Partner and is now available to customers on AWS Marketplace—and you may have seen our big, award-winning presence at this year’s AWS re:Invent conference. We continue to develop close relationships with innovative martech providers like Iterable and Cordial. Meanwhile, 18 of the 20 largest email service providers and marketing automation vendors now rely on SparkPost’s technology to power email delivery for their customers.

Like all entrepreneurs, I’m an optimist. It’s a necessary quality for anyone who’s willing to risk time, effort, reputation, and investment in the belief that there’s a market of customers willing to change the status quo and buy into a better way of doing things.

Perhaps my optimism is one of the reasons I particularly appreciate the start of a new year. I look forward to working with you as we build upon the accomplishments of the past year. Let me know what you’d like to see from SparkPost in the months ahead. Leave a comment below or reach out on Twitter, Slack, or email.

I hope you have had a joyful season with those people that matter to you. On behalf of the team at SparkPost, I’d like to wish you a successful, prosperous, and happy new year. And thank you for being part of our community and the reason for our successes in 2017 and in the year to come.

Phillip Merrick

now sending 15 billion emails

Let me begin by saying that this is the sort of blog post a CEO loves to write.

When SparkPost launched 18 months ago, we knew developers were looking for a better way to send email from their web and mobile apps. We knew enterprise senders needed more reliable delivery for email that was critical to their business. And we had a clear vision for how to meet those needs, with a next-generation cloud architecture backed by a team that understood email better than just about anyone else on the planet.

But even so, we knew that there was one thing that was going to be absolutely essential to our hoped-for success: you. We were optimistic, of course, that the market would recognize the value of what we were building. But the growth we’ve experienced in the last year and a half has exceeded our expectations.

We’re now delivering more than 15 billion messages each month, and that figure is growing by more than 1 billion per month. To put it simply, SparkPost is the fastest-growing email delivery service on the market.

That growth is because of you. We’ve just been thrilled that so many developers and enterprise customers alike understand the benefit of what SparkPost has brought to the table—and to see the sorts of innovative things our customers are doing with email today. SparkPost’s 15,000+ active customers range from small startups to fast-growing major technology companies including Pinterest, Zillow, CareerBuilder, LinkedIn, and Intercom.

Beyond the numbers, I’d like to highlight three areas that reflect SparkPost’s leadership and growth:

  • SparkPost is now the preferred choice of developers for API-driven email delivery. This was evidenced by the recent migration of many Mandrill users to SparkPost after MailChimp announced it would no longer be available as a standalone service. The resulting surge of users to SparkPost was captured in a recent Notablist report analyzing the Mandrill market disruption; this analysis found that over 21 percent selected SparkPost—5 percent ahead of the closest competitor—prompting Notablist to state that “SparkPost Won the Battle for New Users.”
  • SparkPost has earned our reputation as the most reliable and flexible email delivery service provider. Unlike other email delivery providers who continue to expend resources and focus on building and maintaining  their own data centers, SparkPost is the only full-featured cloud email delivery service built 100 percent for the modern cloud.  SparkPost’s leverage of Amazon Web Services, the industry’s preeminent Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) platform, allows customers and partners alike to experience the benefits of a secure, scalable, and elastic cloud infrastructure—like guaranteed burst rates—while allowing SparkPost to remain focused on developing and expanding its core service offerings and technical innovations.
  • SparkPost is focused on email delivery—and we love our MarTech partners. We’ve developed more than 30 strategic partnerships with innovative marketing technology (MarTech) companies. These marketing application providers give SparkPost customers the combined benefit of leading-edge MarTech functionality with the high-performing email delivery service that is SparkPost’s clear focus.

2016 has proven to be a year of remarkable growth for SparkPost. And I fully expect the next 18 months will be even better.

So, a heart-felt thank you. I can’t wait to see what we build and grow together.

—Phillip Merrick