MOSCOW — In the U.S. startup landscape, there is no shortage of business-focused startups that are using the cloud to innovate old ideas. Turns out that European startups are also doing the same and coming up with some great ideas to give businesses over here an edge too.
Today at DEMO Europe, I had the opportunity to speak with four cool startups that deliver their service via the cloud and help companies with new tools in the areas of big data, e-commerce, communication, and collaboration.
Let’s take a look:
Big data and analytics is a seriously hot space. Just a few weeks back, big data business Tableau had its IPO and jumped 63 percent in value on its first day.
So it’s an especially interesting time to look over to Europe and find Tableau competitor BellaDati attracting a lot attention. The service offers cloud or on-premise software that visualizes big data and offers a wide-range of analytics apps.
BellaDati originally started in Prague, but now has two other “headquarter” offices in Singapore and Chicago. Its customers include Red Bull, GTS Alive, and New World Resources.
BellaDati CEO Martin Trgina (pictured) told VentureBeat that the fastest growing market for the company is now in Asia. But he is still optimistic about the U.S.
“Asia is a very dynamic market; the U.S. not so much,” Trgina said. “But we think both regions are very interesting.”
The company was started in Prague as product of TRGIMAN, a popular web-service integration company. When the service started being developed in 2008, BellaDati received $3 million in capital investment from Trgina and CFO Miloslava Trginova.
Twilio competitor Nexmo, based in London and San Francisco, offers cloud-based APIs and backend services for SMS texting and text-to-speech.
Clients use the SMS service to deliver important notifications, verification data, or to facilitate communication between customers. Big-name customers include Airbnb, Hailo, and Viber. Airbnb, interestingly enough, uses Twilio for voice services and Nexmo for SMS.
Nexmo offers relatively inexpensive SMS rates relative to competitors because it offers wholesale rates in any quantity.
“We’re helping people realize the value of SMS,” business development team member Katherine Procopiou (pictured) told VentureBeat. “SMS is reliable and the Internet is not necessarily in your customer’s hands. When it’s SMS, you are in full control of communicating with your customers.”
Founded in 2010, Nexmo has raised $3 million to date from Intel Capital and others.
Small e-commerce companies can be difficult to build up and maintain, especially with so much competition out there. But the job of tracking your competitors’ prices shouldn’t be hard, and Prisync thinks it has the solution for it.
Istanbul-based Prisync offers a cloud-based dashboard that tracks the prices of all the products compared against your competitors. Once you get signed up, all you have to do is provide a list of your products and a list of your competitors, and Prisync does the heavy lifting. Right now, the company manually puts together the listings, but it is working on an algorithm to do automatically.
“A lot of e-commerce companies get an intern to check prices,” Prisync CEO Burc Tanir (pictured) told VentureBeat. “But we can input that data and automate the experience. … We don’t sleep basically.”
The service is in beta now but will fully open up to customers in September. Prisync is backed by a €100,000 grant from The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey and €50,000 in seed funding from an angel investor.
In many businesses, deep collaboration is the key to success. RealtimeBoard provides a cloud-based “endless whiteboard” so teams and companies can collaborate using boards.
RealtimeBoard claims its tech can allow up to 100,000 people to simultaneously collaborate on a single digital whiteboard at a time. Users can attach all kinds of files and objects to a whiteboard, including PDFs, pictures, videos, Google documents, and post-it notes. On top of businesses using it for collaboration, a lot of educators are also on the service.
“Bigger whiteboards provide teams with bigger opportunities and more problem solving,” RealtimeBoard team member Maks Semyonovykh (pictured) told VentureBeat. “We provide endless possibilities.”
The service is offered in a freemium format. It offers a free version with some features, but it recently added a “pro” version with more security and collaboration tools that are needed in businesses. Semyonovykh said that enterprises have been requesting an on-premise version and said it will eventually develop an on-premise solution.
RealtimeBoard was made by Perm, Russia-based Multivitamin. The technology that lets people collaborate on RealtimeBoard originally stems from multiplayer gaming technology created by AlternativaPlatform.
RealtimeBoard currently has 13 employees. Semyonovykh said 80 percent of the company’s business comes from outside of Russia and that clients are from all over the world.
Cloud business concept via Shutterstock, all other photos via Sean Ludwig/VentureBeat
Disclosure: DEMO Europe paid for the airfare and hotel in Moscow so we could cover the event. Our coverage remains objective.