Mindjet – Profile
HQ: Larkspur, CA
Founded: Mindjet was founded in Frankfurt, Germany in 1993 and opened its US office in 1998.
Management: CEO, Robert Gordon, joined the company in 2004. He was previously a VC and before that was CEO of Platform Computing. Founders are the German couple Michael and Bettina Jetter and are currently CTO and COO respectively. The Jetters launched the company when Michael was stricken with leukemia, which led him to create Mindjet’s first application. He documented this in the book The Cancer Code – How a journey Through Leukemia Led To Software That Changed the Way People Work.
Investors: In 2003, Mindjet raised $5M from 3I.
Business Model: Company sells business information visualization software. Its flagship product is called MindManager, which sold more than 500K licenses at about $350 per user. The product might be comparable to Visio, allowing users to sketch and share projects. The software is used particularly by mobile users on tablet PCs and handhelds. In 2005, the company launched a visualization dashboard plug-in to Salesforce.com. The dashboard map allows the user to drill into data that is dynamically linked to the online database and uses color-coding on branch objects to show the status of opportunities and deals. The company did about $20M in revenue in 2004, up 60% from 2003.
Competitors: Visio (Microsoft)
Dirt: If the new CEO is competent, this company should start putting some dirt behind its tires. The founders gave him the keys with some solid revenues in the tank and a new product. It should be fairly easy to upsell Salesforce customers, and Salesforce is incentivized to make 3rd party plug-ins work.