Oct 19, 2013 Reetta Heiskanen
The story of AppGyver was started couple of years ago by entrepreneurs Marko Lehtimäki and Henri Vähäkainu. They wanted to develop mobile apps for their customers but realised soon that there was not a complete platform available for app developing. They looked through the existing solutions but felt soon that they did not reach the quality that they wanted in their apps.
The only option left was to build their own platform – AppGyver. It enables anyone with HTML skills to build a native mobile app.
The COO of AppGyver, Henri Vähäkainu, why would AppGyver be any better than all the other types of platforms to develop mobile apps?
“First of all, our mission as a company is to make HTML5 hybrid apps indistinguishable from native apps. Secondly, we work really hard to make the app development process on our platform as rapid as possible. On our website you can see a video of how to build a real mobile app in less than 5 minutes.”
What is the main reason that the AppGyver team works well together?
“Everyone at AppGyver gets heard and decisions are weighted in terms of product excellence instead of just executing the ideas of those who have the strongest voice. The result of these is a synergy that truly is greater than the sum of its parts and an environment in which people feel like they are part of something much bigger.”
Tell us three things about AppGyver that is going to surprise us.
“We only measure ourselves against our previous selves, 90% of day-to-day communication as a team is via chat using Flowdock and we had almost 18 months of semi-private beta before we finally launched our platform.”
What problems have you faced while building AppGyver?
“The biggest challenges have been during times when we realized we might have to rewrite most of our technology from scratch. We had put a lot of effort into making something good, but building such a complex product, we hit the brick wall a few times.”
How did you resolve those problems?
“We decided to pull the plug and do what was right, which meant “losing” many man-years of software development. It was a big thing for such a small team, and we had to truly believe in what we were doing. But we did it, and seen an incredible payoff.”
What makes a great entrepreneur?
“It’s important to learn to drop personal preferences and opinions, and listen to the wisdom of the team. Do what you love, build a team of A-players and make sure the team has a unified vision. With those, it’s hard to fail as long as you’re solving a real problem. And of course, it’s very important to learn to say no. You only have so many hours in a day.”
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