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Industry Telecommunications
Founded September, 2011
Headquarters San Francisco, Bangalore, United States, India
Key people
Venky Balasubramanian (co-founder), Michael Ricordeau (co-founder)

Plivo (pronounced Plēvō) is a cloud-based communication platform as a service (CPaaS)[1][2] company based in San Francisco, California.[3] Plivo enables businesses to add Voice and SMS functions into their applications using a HTTP REST API.[4][5]


Plivo was founded in 2011 by Venky Balasubramanian[6][7] and Michael Ricordeau,[8] which originally started as an open source telephony project. Venky and Mike met on Github while they were both looking for a communications platform to add Voice and SMS functions to their own applications. On May 26, 2011 and after a few months of working remotely, Plivo Open Source was released as a framework for developers to prototype voice calling web[9] and mobile applications.[10][11] Plivo Open Source Framework is licensed under the terms of the Mozilla Public License Version 1.1.[12]

Mike and Venky met in person for the first time at ClueCon 2011 to present Plivo Open Source to the developer community,[13] an annual conference for webRTC and telephony developers hosted by FreeSWITCH.[14] The open source project was so well received that Mike and Venky were approached by businesses that wanted to pay for a hosted version of Plivo Open Source. Soon after, Mike and Venky founded Plivo Inc, a cloud communications platform that removed all the complexities of telephony and democratize access to voice and SMS for businesses of all sizes.

Upon being reject from Y Combinator the first time, Mike and Venky went fast to work proving that Plivo could fill a large gap in the current telephony space. At this time, Plivo was accepted to be part of Morpheus Batch 6,[15][16] an incubator and angel investor that helped push the company in the right direction. After getting a handful of initial customers, they applied to Y Combinator again and were accepted in the summer 2012 batch. After launching their scalable voice and SMS API on demo day,[17] Plivo received $1.75M in seed funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Qualcomm Ventures, and SV Angel.[18][19][20] At the time, Venky dubbed Plivo as the AWS of Telephony that "provides a reliable, scaleable platform where companies can host their web servers".[21]

Since Plivo's round of seed funding, it has not raised any additional funds. Instead, Plivo became profitable in 2014.

As of January 2017, Plivo has 100 team members across 2 offices: one in San Francisco, United States and another in Bangalore, India. In 2016, Plivo delivered over 2 billion voice minutes and SMS customers combined.


The Plivo Open Source Framework is built with open source software including FreeSWITCH, Python, gevent, and Flask. It enables developers to use any cloud hosting solution or telecom provider including their own hardware servers. Plivo also supports any communications media that FreeSWITCH supports including calls over PSTN, SIP, H323, Skype, or FreeTDM and media codecs including G.722, SILK, CELT, or G.729.[22]

Plivo's hosted platform (also called Plivo cloud) is also built using the FreeSWITCH framework, a newer, open source alternative to Asterisk. Plivo was the first widely available API for the FreeSWITCH platform.[23] Plivo's cloud technology can be divided into two major layers: carrier networks and API framework. Plivo connects directly to carrier networks to make and receive voice calls and text messages. These carriers are connected through Plivo's network of PoPs (points of presence) world wide to enable global coverage.[24] Plivo's functionality lies in the software framework, which is exposed to developers through an API platform. Developers can take these APIs and XMLs as building blocks to form their own communications applications.[25]

Plivo provides an Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to make and receive calls and SMS. These APIs are used in conjunction with XML responses to control the flow of a call or a message. Developers can create Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) endpoints to perform the telephony operations and the APIs are platform independent and can be used in any programming environment including PHP, Ruby, Python, .NET, Java, Node.js, and Go.[26]

Plivo's HTTP REST APIs also support WebRTC,[27][28] SIP trunking[29] and SMPP connectivity.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "CPaaS fuses communications apps with business workflows". SearchUnifiedCommunications. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  2. ^ "CPaaS, or communications-embedded apps, is next UC frontier". SearchUnifiedCommunications. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  3. ^ "Plivo | crunchbase". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  4. ^ "YC-Backed Telephony Startup Plivo Raises $1.75M From Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Qualcomm Inc. & SV Angel". December 3, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Voice and Messaging Apps Platform Provider Plivo Raises Seed Round From Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Qualcomm and SV Angel". 
  6. ^ "Venky Balasubramanian,Co-founder, Plivo Inc. | MarTech Advisor". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  7. ^ "2016 Predictions: Cloud APIs and carriers inevitable collision, and other telecom trends for 2016 - RCR Wireless News". RCR Wireless News. 2016-01-06. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  8. ^ "Michael Ricordeau - Co-Founder @ Plivo | crunchbase". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  9. ^ "Top 10 UCC news highlights reveal 2015 trends". SearchUnifiedCommunications. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  10. ^ "FreeSWITCH". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  11. ^ Perez, Sarah. "Chelsea Handler's New App "Gotta Go" Gets You Out Of Awkward Situations". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  12. ^ "Plivo Framework - Opensource Telephony Application Prototyping Platform". 
  13. ^ "Plivo ClueCon 2011". 2011-08-14. 
  14. ^ "FreeSWITCH". Retrieved 2017-02-10. 
  15. ^ "Morpheus, Seeders-backed Plivo gets funding from Y Combinator". - India startups, internet, mobile, e-commerce, software, online businesses, technology, venture capital, angel, seed funding. 2012-07-10. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  16. ^ "India's first start-up accelerator The Morpheus to shut its program". The Economic Times. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  17. ^ Constine, Josh. "Y Combinator S12 Demo Day Batch 1: Meet 9GAG, Double Robotics, Hubchilla, SmartAsset And More". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  18. ^ Perez, Sarah. "YC-Backed Telephony Startup Plivo Raises $1.75M From Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Qualcomm Inc. & SV Angel". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-10. 
  19. ^ Tan, Garry (2012-12-04). "Plivo (YC S12) raises $1.75M from Andreessen Horowitz, Battery Ventures, Qualcomm, SV Angel". Y Combinator. Retrieved 2017-02-10. 
  20. ^ "语音通话和信息云平台Plivo融资175万美元_科技_腾讯网". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  21. ^ "How Silicon Valley Fosters Plivo's Cloud-Based Telephony,Forbes Coverage". 
  22. ^ "FreeSWITCH". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  23. ^ "FreeSWITCH". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  24. ^ "Plivo makes it to 50 countries in 30 days, outstrips competition". VentureBeat. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  25. ^ "Plivo, a scalable API for voice, says: 'you're going down, Twilio'". VentureBeat. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  26. ^ Lardinois, Frederic. "Plivo Launches The First SDK That Lets Developers Connect WebRTC And SIP". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  27. ^ "WebRTC Market is expected to grow at a significant CAGR of over 40% between 2016 to 2023 | TechAnnouncer". (in og:). Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  28. ^ "Plivo - at Enterprise Connect 2013 - Unified Communications Strategies". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 
  29. ^ "SIP Trunks Get Easier". Retrieved 2017-02-11. 

External links[edit]