While helping software companies enter the market in the Netherlands, we see many ambitious companies with a lot of growth potential. By this we mean that the current solution they have developed is good and that many big additions to the current solution can be created.
Often these big addons are somewhere on the development roadmap but never make it to the development planning for the upcoming months. The companies are often too buzzy with what they already have, and the roadmap is packed with feature requests, bugs and required updates because of changes in the environment. As a result, the development of the big addon is postponed and meanwhile the thought stays alive that they have a product with a lot of potential and therefore a company with a bright future. But to be realistic…, well let’s stick to that this isn’t progress.
What we have seen so far is that this potential hardly ever turns into reality when companies try to do it themselves. When it does, it often is initiated by a client that is willing to invest in the development of such an addon. These kinds of visionary client are rare, and when such a client emerges the consequences for the development roadmap and development capacity are severe.
Meanwhile there are potential partners that already have developed such a solution as a stand-alone solution. They already have setup “the department” that is missing in the other scenario. The solution is developed with and for many clients instead of one. The potential partner has acquired the personnel with the knowledge, experience and skills needed. And they already have clients.
The question is why companies are not so eager to looking into partnering. One of the reasons could be that the company was founded by developers. And typically, developers want to develop the big addons themselves. Those are the cherries on the pie. From the perspective of the entrepreneur, it might feel like giving away a part of the company and receiving uncertainty in return. But how valid are these arguments when the development is postponed each time while the competition might be progressing.
Partnering definitely can have advantages. Especially when that partner is located in another country. By going together both partners move from “no clients abroad” to having a foothold abroad with a network that can spread the word of mouth. Both partners create upsell options. Development costs can be spread over more clients. The local partner can help with the localization and specific regulations etc. Therefore we highly recommend looking into the options of partnering abroad. We can help.
We have helped multiple companies with finding partners. We both know the Dutch market and the software market in Europe, supported by our database. During our projects we have experienced that entrepreneurs at either side of the partnering can be helped in the process of “letting go”, “how to deal with the uncertainty”, “how to create a partnership”, can I trust the “partner”, etc. Often an open talk about the uncertainty which the potential partner has about the partnership is needed to clear the road to a partnership.
What should be your next step? Have a skype with us. Tell us what your solution is about, and let’s find out what the potential addons are, where and how the partners can be found, and what profile the partner should have. Sometimes a different approach is needed. Typically, we will do a project starting at 1 day per week for 3 months with an option for prolongation.
You can call us now at +31 (0) 38 8536127
Arthur Scholten – Founder