Smartsheet, a Seattle-area startup that builds cloud-based collaboration software to help other companies manage their internal processes, today announced that it has acquired TernPro, maker of the popular Slope tool.
The acquisition is part of Smartsheet’s aggressive push to add functionalities to its marquee collaboration application, which bears a resemblance to Excel but offers several features the Microsoft product does not. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Smartsheet said it would be incorporating Slope’s features — including the visual workflow capabilities that allow users to review, proof, and comment on videos, images, and documents — into its eponymous service. The company expects the full integration of Slope into Smartsheet this year, Gene Farrell, Smartsheet’s SVP of product, told VentureBeat.
“The integration of Slope with Smartsheet will enable a range of powerful use cases that save time, augment existing workflows, increase collaboration, and lead to better content,” the companies said, adding that they found each other because they have several customers in common.
Four-year-old Seattle-based TernPro was founded by Dan Bloom and Brian Bosché as a video production startup. Appalled by the difficulties involved in collaborating on video projects, they began work on Slope, which launched in 2016.
Smartsheet CEO Mark Mader said the acquisition would help position Smartsheet as a one-stop solution for all sorts of collaboration. “This is relevant to workflows in a wide range of use cases and industries, including marketing and creative work, and supports our vision to empower everyone to more effectively plan, track, automate, and report on work, regardless of technical skill level,” he said.
Most of the team that worked on Slope — which counts Microsoft, SendGrid, and CBS Sports Network among its more than 100 customers — will be joining the product division at Smartsheet, spearheaded by Farrell. Bloom and Bosché are also joining Smartsheet, the companies said.
Slope will eventually be folded into the Smartsheet brand, Farrell told VentureBeat, adding that the company is committed to supporting existing Slope customers. Farrell declined to elaborate, but said the company would offer more detail in the coming weeks.
Smartsheet, which went public last year, said integrating Slope’s features would also help expand Smartsheet Accelerators, a set of solutions announced in 2018 that are aimed at those with IT project management office (PMO) and merger and acquisition needs.
This is only Smartsheet’s second acquisition in its nearly 14-year history. Early last year, the company acquired Converse.AI, a Scotland-based startup that lets companies create bots to automate their business processes. Smartsheet’s base has grown from 65,000 users in more than 30 countries in 2009 to 4.5 million in 190 countries. Of those, 76,000 are paying customers, the company told VentureBeat. As of 2017, Smartsheet was charging businesses licenses per user, which ranged between $14 and $25 apiece.
In recent years, Smartsheet has been aggressively adding new features, including integrations with services and products from Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Salesforce, Jira, Slack, Dropbox, Box, and Atlassian.