Enterprise platform startup Opal Labs wants to make Enterprise work more like a consumer experience. The Portland-based startup launched officially in October 2012. The founders had previously founded a digital agency, We the Media, where they served very large Enterprise clients. The exposure to Enterprise enabled the team to work closely with a flagship customer to create its first market-ready app. Opal Brainstorms was designed to enable workforce professionals to contribute unique ideas and collaborate on problem-solving. Completely SaaS-driven with a simple signup, employees and partners can get started in minutes. Built with user experience in mind, the Brainstorms app is elegantly designed with a Pinterest look and feel.
I stumbled upon Opal because the company recently teamed up with TEDxAustin to enable participants, partners, speakers, and the public to engage in conversations around this year’s event which took place this past weekend. George Huff, Opal Labs CEO and co-founder, spoke to me last week about the company. I asked him, “Why Enterprise?” He responded, “I want a business model that isn’t advertising. We started in Enterprise, and that’s what we know. We know we can have so much impact there– and we want to have impact.” Huff recognizes that just like cash flow is critical to a successful business, “idea flow” will secure its future. He wanted to key into the ideas and problems every company faces. He asks, “Who has problems in a business?” The answer, of course, is “everyone.”
Opal Labs is 100% bootstrapped with about a dozen employees. Huff says they have been making money for about a year with a solid portfolio of large enterprise clients. The company headquarters are in Portland and has a London-based subsidiary that serves a flagship client: ARUP. Pricing for Opal Brainstorms is $10/user/month with an annual contract, but the company will negotiate larger scale enterprise license agreements.
I’m looking forward to watching this company grow. With HTML5 and superb design skills, there is no limit to the problems Opal can start addressing in large Enterprise. You can find Huff on AngelList, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
(Cross-posted @ ITSinsider)