Plant an App is a Romania-based startup that operates a low-code platform. To boost growth, the company is also raising money on the Republic equity crowdfunding site. The minimum investment needed to buy Plant an App stock on the website is only $150.
The founder and CEO of the company is Bogdan Litescu. He has a computer science background, having received his degree at the University of POLITEHNICA of Bucharest. He then went on to become a software engineer at several companies and then started a number of his own businesses, such as DNN Sharp and Open Trais.
During this process, he saw how difficult it was to build IT systems. They usually took too long to develop and were expensive to create. So he wondered, “Why not build a platform that could streamline the process?”
The Background of Plant an App
Technology is no longer a nice-to-have feature. To be competitive in today’s global economy, it’s absolutely critical to have technology. Customers expect to easily interact with companies through websites and mobile apps. They also expect fast response times. The fact is that companies like Uber (NYSE:UBER) and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) have significantly raised the bar for firms’ performance.
That is why digital transformation is one of the biggest trends in technology. But the problem is that it can be challenging for companies to make the transition because they usually have cultural resistance and legacy systems that are difficult to integrate.
And digital transformations often involve the development of custom software that’s needed to meet each company’s unique requirements. But that is far from easy to pull off.
Yet low-code can be a big help. It enables custom development to be carried out with all the benefits of off-the-shelf software For example, a non-technical person can create a sophisticated app by using simple language and visual tools.
Sounds great, right? Definitely. But low-code is quickly becoming a crowded sector. Just some of the players include Zoho, Quick Base, Appian (NASDAQ:APPN), Mendix, Nintex and OutSystems .
Then there are the megatech companies that have their own offerings, such as Salesforce (NYSE:CRM), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL, NASDAQ:GOOG). All these companies have standout platforms and significant resources.
In light of this, how can a small company like Plant an App set itself apart? What makes it unique and interesting to potential customers?
Whereas a typical low-code system is for business people and analysts, Plant the App is instead geared to technical people. This means that they can use automated approaches for rudimentary tasks and processes, giving them more time for higher-priority items. That is certainly beneficial, since IT organizations are often stretched and under-resourced.
This developer-centric approach has already proved quite effective for other companies like Twilio (NYSE:TWLO). By allowing technical people to try out the software, they can increase its adoption.
What’s more, if the developers like the product, that makes it easier for management to justify buying it.
Using this strategy, the company has signed 36 customers and its ARR (Annual Recurring revenues) is $270,000.
In the meantime, Plant the App has built a strong ecosystem of 4,000 partners. That has certainly enhanced the value of the platform and widened its distribution.
As for the potential of the market, it is massive and there will be plenty of room for multiple players. According to Gartner, low-code will be a part of 65% of all application development efforts by 2024.
The Bottom Line on Plant an App
This year, the company graduated from 500 Startups’ accelerator program and received a $150,000 investment from the venture fund. As for Plant an App’s crowdfunding campaign, it has recently started. So far, the company has raised over $72,000 from 167 investors and its valuation has been set at $9 million.
Now as with any early-stage investment, Plant an App faces many risks. While the company has shown progress, it is still quite small and will likely need to raise considerable more capital to be competitive in the market.
However, for those investors who are willing to take on the risks, Plant an App does look like an interesting play on the low-code market.
On the date of publication, Tom Taulli did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article.
Tom Taulli (@ttaulli) is an advisor/board member for startups and author of various books and online courses about technology, including Artificial Intelligence Basics, The Robotic Process Automation Handbook and Learn Python Super Fast. He is also the founder of WebIPO, which was one of the first platforms for public offerings during the 1990s.