Caught in a Slack

When being patient turn into being "slack"

If you had read our last article we had written for the Webinar we presented, we do work with a lot of start-up teams. And thus we are well accustomed to on boarding new platform and tools into our workflow. One of the earliest and easiest tool we had on boarded to track our myriad of start-ups is (owned by Atlassian).

Trello is a web-based Kanban project management application. It enables easy, real-time collaboration between team members and even multiple teams and projects. 

When burst onto the scene in 2013, we started to read about the growth of US developers using it as a communication tool for their development process. We started to onboard our startup teams to communicate through Slack in 2016.

Alas, while all the teams signed up, the usage continued to be very low. Most of the teams subsequently abandoned Slack and continued with Telegram and WhatsApp instead.

To be exact, most of our startup teams like to communicate through Telegram. Being developers, they could build chatbot functionality on top of Telegram which makes it a better productivity tool for the organisation.

On a side note, we slowly abandoned Slack and move on.

Slack’s IPO in 2019 got us interested in trying Slack again. For now, we have a selfish reason to do so. Finally in 2020 4Q (just about 1.5 months ago), we had a team which full bought into the idea of using Slack.

We realised that Slack as a tool had morph from a communication tool to a central tool for an organisation. We can launch any other programs from Slack. For example, we can link Trello to Slack and then manage our Trello entries from Slack.

The integration of all the possible tools around Slack had made Slack become the nervous system for the company. When we realised that Slack is possibly morphing into a super API company, we understood the potential moat around Slack. From Outlook, Trello, Drive to Zoom, a company can manage 90% of its work within Slack without ever leaving Slack.

It is something that a lot of US investment blogs/podcast had been talking about. While a lot had been said, we could not really appreciate the moat until we start using it to its full capacity last week. Slack had integrated the rest of the productivity tool into their ecosystem.

We are in the midst of writing an article on Slack when news about Slack threw a spanner into our work.

Salesforce announced a takeover of Slack yesterday. Now we are left sucking our thumb again.

We would not have made a lot of money on Slack as it would have been placed in the Unrecognised Growth Portfolio and the sizing would most likely had been cap at 1% but the missed chance is hard to swallow since we had been trying to understand Slack since 2016…

Till the next investment…

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