Vanilla Forums raises $500K in Series A

Montreal-based open source communtiy forum Vanilla Forums announced today that they have raised a $500K Series A round led by Montreal Startup, with participation by eonBusiness, Norseman Capital and Klein Venture Partners.

The former TechStars summer 2009 company will use the funds to expand its marketing, development, and sales efforts.

Vanilla co-founder Mark O’Sullivan shares how they went from TechStars to funded in less than six months on their blog today and the entire post is worth a read. Here’s a sample:

We officially began looking for funding on August 7th, 2009 at the TechStars investor day in Boulder, Colorado. Investor day was, of course, the culmination of months of work on our product and our pitch at the TechStars program. We were well received, and had a fantastic day meeting investors from across North America. One of the investors we met that day would end up leading our financing round (John Stokes from Montreal Startup), others whom we had already met through the TechStars program would end up following on with a significant investment (eonBusiness in Denver), and another investment group in the room would also end up joining the round (Norseman Capital in Denver).

Following the end of our time at TechStars, I went into full-time “find investors” mode. Using the little amount of money remaining from TechStars, I traveled across North America to New York, San Francisco, and Montreal for meetings with investors I had met on investor day. Before going into TechStars, I thought that this part of the process would be torture, but I must admit that I had a lot of fun meeting with everyone and telling people about Vanilla.

Congrats to co-founders Mark O’Sullivan and Todd Burry on being the most recent TechStars success story.