San Francisco, Mission 1.

In 2008, we started to make a time tracker that would be so easy to use that no one would ever again feel frustration when tracking time. That was our idea. And we knew that new programming methods had opened new possibilities to make programs (applications) work directly in a web browser.

Seeing other web applications distribute to a global market, and being tech students, of course we thought this was the way software would be distributed in the future. Of course we thought of global domination from day 1. It did not even strike us that this approach might contradict the usual ways of the local market.

Photo Credit: Katy Raddatz

But it did. When we started Yast as a company, and not just a tech project, we soon got the questions of when we would be integrated with the national leading software on accounting and billing. How soon will you hire a sales staff? When would we do advertising in local magazines? Good questions. And they still are. But it also raised a question above all. What if we were wrong? What if our global approach was an illusion? In that case, where did this illusion come from? Well, where does all modern IT dreams come from these days? San Francisco and Silicon Valley.

Up until this point, I have never doubted the global approach. It is my sincere opinion that it is the right strategy to pursue. I think many software developers selling to local markets will be in trouble when the best of web apps are offered together as bundled offerings. But it is my job to look for signs that falsify our strategic foundation. If our strategy is based on a concept we believe to be “the American way” of cloud based solutions, but turns out to be nothing but an illusion of “the American way”, then we are probably not doing it right.

So my first and most important question in San Francisco would be: Is our global strategy a common approach in San Francisco? Even if we thought the obvious answer to that question would be “Of course”, it was still an important question.

My starting point for asking any questions about the app market was obvious. Our partners at Appdirect have recently raised $ 3,25 Million to their white label web app marketplace. Being listed as one of their handpicked 40 apps, I felt quite sure they had gone through a lot of apps in the process and been able to answer tons of questions about the app market on their way. Why not use it as my starting point in San Francisco? So I did.

To be continued…

To read previous blog posts from the CEO in San Francisco, click here.

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  • RB says: 

    Where is your current customer base from?

    I presume the AppDirect sales channel can be viewed as global, but would not a targeted sales and marketing approach make as much sense? Going after everything at once you could risk “spreading the butter too thin”?!

    Now geography is one thing, but what do you see as your prime target customer segment, not thinking about location?

  • Elsie Twomey says: 

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  • Taniya Bridgers says: 

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Yast is a software company that builds easy-to-use, but powerful software. It's easy to make things complex; it’s incredibly hard to make things easy.

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Yast has to be the easiest to use time tracker, period. Keep up the great work! Glenn Murray - Divine Write

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