This startup believes that mobile apps for businesses should work like consumer apps Tech Crunch

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Have you noticed a huge gap between consumer and business apps on your phone? While consumer apps are beautifully designed and easy to use, business apps are painful to use.

A European startup is developing a suite of B2B apps designed for mobile first as phones become the primary computers for many people. And they're calling their company… a mobile-first company.

When you download an app from this company, you can expect to be able to create an account from your phone (that's not always the case with B2B apps) and run everything from the device in your pocket. Most companies offering B2B tools treat mobile apps as companion apps and second-class citizens.

But the European startup doesn't want to recreate Salesforce, Asana or Workday on mobile. Instead, the company plans to focus on small and medium businesses and address their needs one app at a time. Small companies don't need a complex enterprise software solution. They need an app to manage a set of tasks very well.

And there are many ideas for a mobile-first company, such as creating an app to generate a quote, or another to track expenses, or a dedicated app to manage inventory in your workshop or small warehouse.

“The idea is really to build a suite of applications. It is not an all-in-one app and that is the main difference with other players. People are afraid of technology so we don't believe in the all-in-one model,” co-founder and CEO Jérémy Goillot told me.

The first app to track your inventory

Co-founder and CTO of this new project, Ignacio Seal Brunet, previously worked as VP of Engineering for Pomelo, a fintech infrastructure company in Latin America, employing 200 engineers for the company.

Although Seal Brunet is more experienced with the needs of large companies, he has also seen how B2B apps don't work with small businesses. “I know how to solve big problems for big companies. But on the other hand I had this problem with my family. They have a furniture company, but they have problems with invoicing, inventory, etc.,” he told me.

Many small companies rely on consumer apps to meet their needs. “They're using Instagram as a showcase, WhatsApp as a CRM, a personal bank to run their finances,” says Goilat. “Our DNA makes these B2C style applications with this friendliness and mass-market appeal as well as solving problems.”

The mobile-first company's first app is Amoa, a mobile app for tracking your inventory. For example, many garages rely on spreadsheets to track the number of spare parts currently in stock. But workers typically don't spend their workday in front of a computer.

With Amoa, they can open the app, add parts by scanning a barcode, add other information like pricing details and start using the app as a source of truth. When they take something off the shelf, they can remove the item from Amoa and move on.

Even if you don't sell items, maintaining inventory is useful. For example, if you're a wedding photographer, you can create a list of your camera lenses and gear to make sure you don't leave anything behind. Similarly, nurses should make sure they have everything they need before driving to the first patient.

Acting like a mobile gaming company

Amova may or may not work. A mobile-first company develops, ships, iterates and kills ideas that don't work so they can focus on the most promising ones. In my discussion with the founders, it felt like talking to a typical mobile gaming company rather than a B2B software company. Eventually, the company plans to monetize its most promising apps with premium features that you can unlock with a paid subscription.

That's because Jeremy Goillat, the startup's CEO, already knows a thing or two about product-market fit, as he served as head of growth at spend management startup Spenddesk. He is the fourth employee at the French fintech company that has quickly become a unicorn.

When he left Spendesk, he spent some time outside of Europe and the US looking at tech products and how they were being used “I traveled a lot to Africa from Nigeria to Ghana and Kenya because I wanted to see other types of products. . I also traveled a lot in Latin America,” says Goillet.

“And I'm also impressed by other types of companies. We're a huge fan of Indian companies – Zoho is one of them. We're also a big fan of Treinta – a Colombian company.

Since being incorporated in December, the mobile-first company has raised €3.5 million ($3.8 million at today's exchange rate) in a pre-seed round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners and Emblem – the company is announcing the round today. A number of angel investors also participated in the round, including Xavier Neal (Kima Ventures), Thibaud Elgier (Hexa), Jean-Baptiste Hironde (MWM) and Rodolphe Ardant (Spenddesk).

Now, the company wants to move quickly. “At the end of the year, our goal is to release six applications to really upgrade the knowledge of the company to try, kill, try, kill to have a high velocity,” Goilat said.

“We are able to generate the application in two weeks. We are able to bring in thousands of downloads per day,” he added. So while a mobile-first company is talking to a small business owner let's see how long it takes to ship an app you can spot in the wild.



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