Business

Demo: 1calendar unifies your Outlook and school calendar

1calendar says that all you need is one calendar, not multiple ones, to keep track of your busy schedule. That makes sense, but it’s not always easy to accomplish.

1calendar is unveiling its solution, Celcat 1calendar Exchange, at the DEMO Fall 2011 conference today. The Copenhagen, Denmark-based company is targeting its software at schools and universities. After all, nobody wants to miss classes, show up late for events, or forget an important milestone for a child.

1calendar’s software is sold as an add-on to its partner Celcat’s scheduling services. With school calendars, the Celcat 1calendar can seamlessly integrate your Microsoft Outlook or Google Calendar with the school calendar, which typically is based on Microsoft’s Exchange software. Usually, parents have to manually type calendar events into their Outlook calendars, a tedious process that is error prone. 1calendar automatically imports the school calendar into your own and notifies you when changes occur.

The service authenticates a student’s identity, locates the appropriate school schedule, and creates a web-based calendar with synchronized, real-time updates for mobile apps. It also supports private events and e-learning platforms.

Daniel Daugaard, chief executive, said in an interview that the company’s goal is to aggregate a variety of data sources to make a student’s life less complicated.

“This is what we call Calendar 2.0,” he said.

While schools are often on tight budgets, Daugaard said the system can wind up making schools money. 1calendar does the integration with schools and handles all the hosting and maintenance required for its institutional clients. If a school wants to make money on the app, it can do so with 1calendar’s in-app ad system. 1calendar gets a share of the proceeds.

1calendar is fully customizable; you can add a school’s logo and colors to the web and mobile apps.

It scales to thousands of users and requires no maintenance. You can access your calendar on your iPhone, Blackberry and Android phones as well. 1calendar automatically connects with Facebook, allowing you to keep track of all of your friends’ invitations, events and birthdays. And it may integrate with Twitter in the future.

One convenient aspect is that a student can choose to get particular schedules, such as the field hockey team’s schedule. ¬†If a schedule is variable, then the 1calendar service is very valuable because it is harder to keep track of a complex schedule on paper. One of the future features will be to share calendars with groups of friends, Daugaard said.

1calendar has raised $825,000 to date from Seed Capital and Frey Software. It has six employees and was founded by Daugaard and Jakub Roztocil in 2010. Competitors include oMbiel, Eveoh, Blackboard Mobile, Google Apps EDU (indirect competition), Microsoft Live@EDU, and EMS Master Calendar. 1calendar says it has an edge because it has partnered with all of the major scheduling providers in the world. And it has partnered with England’s Celcat to bring 1calendar to 400 different college and university clients.

1calendar says its testing in Denmark has been very successful. After debuting at DEMO, the company plans to launch premium services in 2012. In the meantime, 1calendar can collect about 20 cents per student per year when the schools adopt it software. 1calendar has about a half dozen employees, not counting contractors, and it is raising a round of money.

Since Celcat is based in the United Kingdom and has a lot of customers in Australia, those are the areas where 1calendar will focus its marketing efforts at the outset. Full told, more than six million students attend the schools where Celcat handles scheduling. Daugaard said he will visit 70 schools in the coming weeks in an effort to sign up as many as possible. He thinks the company could close the year with 30 to 40 schools under contract.

1calendar is one of 80 companies chosen by VentureBeat to launch at the DEMO Fall 2011 event taking place this week in Silicon Valley. After our selection, the companies pay a fee to present. Our coverage of them remains objective.


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