Plant an App, a start-up specializing in low-code technology, announced the closure of the pre-seed funding campaign on S...
Companies aren’t getting the tailored software solutions they need fast enough
Nowadays, enterprises are all about Digital Transformation and a major prerequisite of adapting to the new world is to improve the delivery of tailored software solutions. This is where Low-Code comes in. It is a global movement of epic proportions that promises to deliver. Gartner predicts that “by 2024, low-code will be responsible for 65% of all application development.” Even so, many are failing to adopt low-code platforms in their teams.
Most low-code platforms are alienating developers
Low-Code platforms generally provide a way for non-technical users to get involved in the software development process. Even though this is an achievement in itself, there is still a bigger picture to paint. Think about it - who are the people that gain the most value from a promise of delivering tech faster? The developers. And the fact is, within the current market, software engineers are reluctant to use low-code platforms because they are not flexible enough. Developers can’t jump in with their own custom code, can’t build complex enterprise applications and overall, they see low-code platforms not as developer tools but rather, toys.
A low-code platform loved by developers
Plant an App is a low-code platform built by developers, for developers. We give teams the speed of low-code without compromising flexibility. We enable developers to get involved earlier on in the project with business requirements, while also allowing for business users to be involved in the technical development process. This solution shortens the feedback loop and removes the friction between IT and business, and dramatically accelerates software delivery, by up to 20 times.
A low-code solution for the entire team
Basically, the platform offers multiple levels of app development that different user types in the organization can access depending on their level of tech knowledge, but also on the specific project requirements, using only what is needed.
All these users on different levels can work together in an enterprise-grade, enterprise-ready ecosystem, not only regarding software development but also in terms of collaboration, support, training & other functions.
The "Swiss Army Knife" of software development
The product runs on top of mature, validated technology, as the founding team has been working on the building blocks and the foundation for a decade. Basically, all the know-how, success, and technological innovations of the last 10 years have been bundled together and upgraded within a robust platform offering.
Ability to Plug-in Custom Code
Over 20+ ready-made Integrations, including SalesForce, Twilio, Microsoft Dynamics, Slack, MailChimp and more
Over 40+ other pre-built modules and 100s of actions allow for endless creative combinations to build almost anything quickly
Audit & Compliance Trailing
Hosted in the Cloud or On-premise Data Centers
Collaboration Features enable rapid incremental delivery
Flexible Support Levels & SLA for all timezones
Integration with Single Sign-On (SSO) providers
Community Support Forums
Partner Ecosystem for Implementation
Constantly Updated Onboarding & Training Resources
- Low-Code Feature Focus Videos
- Getting Started with Plant an App Videos
- Technical Documentation
Weekly Community Webinar
500% growth in the last year
Launched Nov 2019
500% Growth last year, $500K in revenue and $375K ARR
48 paying Customers & growing, including Vail Health EVBH, University of Idaho, Omnicell and others
Upsell potential as customers build new apps - best story so far, a 5x increase in licensing fees within 9 months.
Extensive 4000+ partner network inherited from previous business
Upsell potential as customers build new apps - best story so far, a 5x increase in licensing fees within 9 months.
Graduated from 500 Startups in 2020
Radical impact in enterprise app development
Most of our current customers are US-Based, large or mid-market enterprises, with strong needs for digital transformation. The verticals we see most are in Healthcare, Financial Services, Telco, Association Management, etc.
Growing with our partner network
Besides working directly with enterprises, we are also expanding our global partner network, composed of software development firms and IT Consultants that re-sell & implement Plant an App for their own client networks. We are actively involved in training and offering support to our Partner Network for their entire growth journey.
The team has over 50 years of combined experience in the developer tools space.
Plant an App is a spin-off from DNN Sharp, scaling the technology & know-how above & beyond the limits of the DNN. We thank the entire community that has believed in us and supported us for every step of the way.
Flexible subscription model
Having a robust and flexible model to cover the needs of any customer planning to use Plant an App comes at a high priority as our main stream of revenue is represented by licenses.
There are two main Subscription Models
Per App (with unlimited users)
Per Developer (with unlimited apps) for Enterprise Development Teams
Each model has a range of plans that gradually evolve towards more complex functionality. We found that this model helps 99% of our customers, whether enterprises or low-code agencies, choose the right plan for them immediately.
Scaling through our partners
Our Partner Network is the key aspect of scaling the business model. We grow our business with every new partner, but also with every new customer that our partners acquire. Thus, we dedicate ourselves towards ensuring that we are at every step of the way for our partners, with dedicated training, support, and incentives.
Here, we have a big advantage as in our 4,000+ partner network inherited from our previous business, that are the perfect profile to become a Plant an App Partner.
Our Technical Success Management Team handles delivering services to our partners and customers in the form of training, proof-of-concept implementations, MVPs and account management). Besides a few key customers that are handled directly by this team, the services we provide result in involving partners in the delivery of the software solutions.
We have found that in today’s fast-moving world, there is a huge demand for Rapid Delivery of Working software. Plant an App, in the right hands, is capable of delivering Proofs-of-Concept or even Market-Ready MVPs in a matter of days, which becomes an excellent stage in the sales funnel for both Plant an App and our partners.
A. Beachhead approach
Creating a beachhead in a specific problem-domain that could benefit from a low-code platform that will accelerate early growth and funt the long term vision.
We know our target decision-maker very well, he is an IT Leader with a strong role in Digital Transformation
The Business we’re helping is usually a US-based, mid-market enterprise most of the time without an internal IT team that can deliver new systems. They rely on System Integrators and Consultants.
The solutions we are building are usually related to data, business and integration systems, but easily grow towards complex organization-wide systems
Our penetration tactic is one of Land & Expand - our clients usually start with a small-scale project, even a Proof of Concept that results in a long-term subscription, which later expands to include more systems..
In this process, we also offer the product & implementation support that enable our clients and partners to rapidly adapt to change and experiment with the use of reusable application templates
B. Our Partner Channel
We enable low-code agencies of even low-code teams within larger software development firms to implement customer projects
C. Agile Sales & Marketing
Inbound Demand Generation
Region-specific public relations
Outbound Demand Generation
The proprietary channel of 4,000 customers from the previous business.
Structured Cold Outreach Campaigns with a Growth Marketing Mindset
Inbound Sales Engine
Consultative sales process to define and center the real business problem to be solved driven by account executives.
Proof -of-concept driven evaluation supported by solution engineers.
Gartner: "By 2024, low-code will be responsible for 65%+ of app development"
Also, ”75% of large enterprises will be using at least 4 low-code development tools”. (Gartner, The Magic Quadrant for Low-Code Platforms, 2019)
The current market is growing at a CAGR of 45.2% and is expected to be worth $52B+ by 2024. An important note is that this estimate had been provided in 2019, before the Covid-19 global pandemic, which has, in the meantime, rapidly accelerated the need for digital transformation and adoption of low-code.
Here are a few ideas about the low-code market from Bogdan, CEO & Founder of Plant an App, extracted from the latest Investor Update Newsletter (Aug 2020)
“I think the greatest indication of when a market is established and overcrowded is when we stop hearing about new players entering it. Take the CMS market for example. Do you know any new CMS software that was released in the past few years that made a dent in the market?
The no-code/low-code space is far from being overcrowded. I hear of at least a dozen start-ups every month, not to mention the big technology giants that want a piece of the pie. Their game is not so much about being disruptive, as ticking the box for their existing customer base. In June, Amazon launched Honeycode, which is a very simple no-code platform, but it does add a lot to the magnitude of the market which helps the disruptive start-ups as well. SAP just announced their no-code solution for Business Process Management, even though they have a partnership with Mendix for low-code capabilities.
And there is another aspect of no-code/low-code that makes it far from being overcrowded. It’s not a single concept, such as CMS. It’s actually an umbrella about many different technologies that serve different purposes. So not all players compete for the same slice of the pie. In fact, that’s what Gartner predicted, that enterprises that adopt low-code will be using at least 4 different platforms depending on the business objectives.
I actually expect that the no-code/low-code market will far exceed Gartner predictions from last year in terms of market size as the pandemic accelerated digital transformation initiatives globally. “
A lot of players only go after the business user
There have been many new players emerging in the low-code space in the last few years, but the most successful ones have been around for at least a decade: Mendix, OutSystems, Appian, even the younger Betty Blocks, are well-known players that provide end-to-end, Enterprise-Grade platforms and we would consider them to be our main competitors. There are also platforms that serve more specific niches in low-code development, either independent companies/start-ups (Pegasystems, KissFlow, Zoho, etc.) or platforms stemming from big technology companies (Microsoft PowerApps, Google AppSheet, Salesforce Lightning, etc.).
Our key competitive advantage is, as previously mentioned, that whilst all these companies are targeting digital transformation by empowering business users to develop technology, we are enabling developers to use the full power of low-code.
Also, our current business model enables us to target mid-market enterprises, where the need for agility and digital transformation is more challenging, especially due to budget constraints.
Empowering the low-code engineer and the low-code agency
We are looking to accelerate the worldwide adoption of low-code by enabling new people, new teams to better implement the tech in modern enterprises.
A lot of people state that low-code is replacing developers. We believe the opposite is true. Low-Code is enabling developers to be even better at the jobs and that is why we have built our platform around the needs & wants of software engineers, to help them accelerate software delivery without compromising on technical flexibility. Proof of this is that a large majority of people building with Plant an App are technical people.
In the last few months, growing our partner network has revealed a new trend - that of the Low-Code Agency - a software development firm that delivers technology projects with the help of low-code technology. We are seeing companies training their staff in multiple low-code platforms and even designing complex systems where apps and platforms are integrated, working together for maximum efficiency - exactly like the Gartner prediction: “75% of large enterprises will be using at least 4 low-code development tools.” Proof of this is our partner network, where we see IT Consulting and software development firms that are integrating low-code platforms in their current offering and even delivering entire projects exclusively on low-code technology.
If you made it this far, here's a cool read on Hackernoon showcasing the story of Radu, one of our colleagues who left traditional coding to become a low-code engineer.
Backed by 500 Startups
We are one of the most recent graduates of the San Francisco Accelerator Program (April 2020) and received a $150k Investment from their Venture Capital Fund.