Claire co-founders Misha Laskin and Marta Jamrozik got their e-commerce chatbot off the ground while sleeping on family members' futons.
After winning the "Shark Tank" style competition at Salesforce.com's annual customer conference Dreamforce, they're preparing for an upgrade.
Claire won the Dreampitch competition on Tuesday, with celebrity judges will.i.am, Mark Cuban, Chris Sacca and Shahrzad Rafati picking the company over two other start-ups.
The three companies were competing for up to $200,000 from Salesforce Ventures and a spot in Salesforce's newly announced start-up incubator. The judges divvied up the money, giving Claire the majority.
Claire is already profitable — or "Ramen profitable" as it's known in Silicon Valley — in that it has two employees who are making enough money to live. Now it's time to start hiring.
"We have big customers, and we need to spend time with them," said Laskin, when asked why they need to raise money. In particular, he said they need to hire account managers.