The BizSpark startup of the day is InishTech. Below you will find an interview with Aidan Gallagher, CEO of InishTech. All the best to them and congratulations for being the startup of the day!
Tell us who you are and your role in the company:
I am the CEO and also one of the original founders of InishTech.
What did you do before creating your company?
I have always worked in the software industry. Among other roles I was Executive Vice President of Global Internet Security company, Baltimore Technologies (NASDAQ:BLM) and also Executive Vice President of Similarity Systems which was acquired in 2006 by Informatica Inc. (NASDAQ:INFA)
How you do feel about being the most promising ‘Startup of the Day’ per Microsoft BizSpark?
We are honored by the recognition. We see it as a great opportunity to make more BizSpark partners aware of how we can help them be more successful.
What is your company’s mission?
Our mission is to enable more ISVs to maximize their software potential by leveraging the new business models made possible by the cloud.
In 140 characters or less, tell us what your company does:
Software Potential from InishTech is an innovative cloud-based service that enables software developers (ISV & SIs) to unlock the commercial potential in their software. With innovative licensing, packaging, code protection and usage analytics all combined into an easy-to-use SaaS service, software developers can manage and control their software in the marketplace like never before.
The ability to manage trials and freemium offerings, package multiple versions of their applications, both SaaS and On Premise, each with its own functions and capabilities, tailored to the needs of virtually any client, whether they are a small, medium or enterprise business or in any vertical market, from a single code base, is the unique capability InishTech brings to maximizing monetization for the ISV.
How did you get the idea for your company?
We acquired the base technology as a spin-off from Microsoft. It was originally known as SLPS – Software Licensing and Protection Service.
Tell us about your funding history. A re you currently looking for funding? If so, how much?
Our seed funding came from our founders, private investors, Enterprise Ireland and Microsoft. We are looking at some significant expansion so we are looking at raising additional capital this year, probably I the range of $3 to $5M.
How many employees do you have? How many developers?
We have 10 employees of which 5 are developers.
Are you hiring? If yes, what are you hiring for and where?
We are always on the lookout for new talent in the areas of business and technical development. We are based in Dublin, Ireland but we have a truly global business. In the short term we intend to beef up our US presence.
Which platform are you building on? Why?
Our platform is .NET and all of our software and services run on Windows Azure. Being a Microsoft spin-off, the original platform was chosen specifically to address the needs of ISVs and SIs developing on .NET and transitioning their applications to the Cloud. We are now expanding our Software Potential Service to support the full range of development environments and platforms including Java and mobile.
Where do you see opportunities today in the Software/Internet area?
The Internet opens up access to a global, virtually unlimited and largely untapped number of clients including consumers, small businesses, corporations and enterprises across multiple vertical industries and horizontal markets. The challenge for ISVs is how to package their applications with just the right features and functions and appropriate pricing to address what can be 1000s of individual client types while maintaining a manageable code base. Combining this agility with an Azure-based SaaS model can provide ISVs with unparalleled capability in packaging their applications to any audience to maximize their software appeal.
What do you think about the BizSpark Program?
The BizSpark program gives us the additional market reach, expert guidance and resources to accelerate our growth in the market.
Do you have any advice for young Software entrepreneurs?
If you are building a software company, before you write one line of code, begin with the business case first, and remember it is all about the customer.
Some considerations: Decide on where your expertise can add value and make a measurable impact – e.g. can you simplify a complex task or automate a time-intensive task? Simply define your value in terms of client/end-user gains – e.g. a financial ROI. Assess how you can address a large enough audience to become sustainable – is the pool in 100s or in 10’s of millions and how will you create awareness and understand the personas of your audience? Decide on a business model – consumer/low-price/volume, business/high-price/value – price and package accordingly. Find ways to leverage partnerships to multiply your efforts to grow your company – e.g. Microsoft, HP, investors, industry bodies.
Who’s your role model?
Sir Richard Branson – because he is the essence of an entrepreneur. Takes calculated risks, pioneers new approaches, is disarmingly self-critical and succeeds more than he fails.
What’s the ONE THING you would like readers to take away from this interview?
Get to know your target audience intimately and build a product to the audience as opposed to fitting an audience to the product.