In the post by TechCrunch’s Evelyn Rusli, introduces many to Erply a new firm that just raised $2M from some reputable sources and was a 2009 Seedcamp winner. Apparently they have a number of customers and are profitable. All good things and I look forward to seeing what they do in the future.
But there was a comment by Saul Klein, a partner at Index Ventures (one of the investors in this round) and co-founder of Seedcamp, that puzzled me. Klein stated:
“We think Erply can do for business software what Skype did for telecom”
My question is whether that was supposed to be a complement. Skype is a wonderful product that I use every day. And yes, they sold themselves for $2.75B to Ebay, but Ebay divested Skype a few years later losing almost $1B on their investment. Not good business by most accounts. I will agree that Skype has disrupted many telecom players, but where is the business for Skype? I downloaded their app for free and make calls and IMs for free. I can pay to call landlines, but I don’t and why would I?
So I’m not so sure that Skype is a great company for Erply to model itself after…unless all Klein is concerned with is a profitable exit, not necessarily a sustainable, growing business.
What’s your take? Am I all wet on this?