|Founded||May 8, 2008|
|Headquarters||ul. Małe Garbary 9,|
Number of locations
|9 offices (2018)|
Number of employees
Netguru is a Polish software development and software consultancy company founded in 2008. Headquartered in Poznań, Poland, it's a globally operating business, with local offices including Warsaw, Kraków, Wrocław, Gdańsk and Białystok. It provides software design and product design, both for early-stage startups and corporations.
Since 2013, Netguru declares yearly growth of nearly 100 percent. It landed three times in Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50 Central Europe ranking, and twice on the “FT 1000,” the Financial Times’ list of fastest-growing companies in Europe. In 2016, Netguru reached PLN 28.2M (US$7.8M) of income, and PLN 5.1M (US$1.4M) net profit, closed 2017 with turnover of PLN 40M (US$11.5M), and in 2018, doubled it at around PLN 80M (US$212M).
Netguru was founded in Poznań, Poland by Wiktor Schmidt (an automation and robotics student at the Poznań University of Technology), Jakub Filipowski (a web designer and philosophy student at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań), and Adam Zygadlewicz (an e-commerce entrepreneur), who met thanks to popularity of Filipowski's blog about the internet Yashke.com (an extension of his and his brother Jan's web design business). The three opened the first coworking space in Poland in a rented office in central Poznań, where they developed websites together, as freelancers. Since September 2007, through their own foundation Fundacja Polak 2.0, they also organized Barcamp Poznań, the first community meetings for innovation enthusiasts and the emerging Polish internet trade, beside other related events: the International Startup Fair Democamp, the ShopCamp workshops, and the Hackfest.
On May 8, 2008, their software development business Schmidt, Filipowski and Zygadlewicz registered under the name Netguru. The first web development contracts gained by the new company was the Web 2.0 travel portal Kolumber.pl, for the media publishing corp Agora, and the employer relations portal for Bank Zachodni WBK. During the same time, Netguru also created their own products including the microblogging social platform Flaker, the charity service SiePomaga, and in February 2009, the recruitment support tool HumanWay, later awarded at startup competitions Seedcamp Warsaw and Aulery. Beside creating websites, functional development and community management, the company started offering management consulting and market analysis. Since September 2007, the Netguru team has documented its portfolio, along with analysis of the web development industry, on the official blog (initially, on the separate developer blog Devguru).
In September 2010, on the InternetBeta Conference, Zygadlewicz announced the first coworking space for startups and freelance developers in Warsaw. In July 2011, Filipowski, along with entrepreneurs Borys Musielak of Filmaster, and Anna Walkowska of Homplex, moved their businesses together into one mansion in Żoliborz, establishing the Reaktor, which evolved into the first central networking hub in Poland, and the venue for the Warsaw startup scene. At that time, Filipowski managed the Poznań team of HumanWay from the Reaktor, while Schmidt managed all of Netguru remotely from Dublin.
In January 2011, Filipowski, by then, a recognized technology blogger, together with Schmidt, contributed the famed guest article on the internet website Antyweb, “There Will Never Be Another Big ‘Polish Equivalent’”, about the web services Allegro, Gadu-Gadu and Nasza Klasa, as local copycats of the popular American web services – EBay, ICQ, and Classmates.com, respectively. The article’s punch line: “Let's get to work, let's get rid of the complexes, and create models with a global, or at least pan-European potential”. Following the incentive, in May 2011, Filipowski and Schmidt started a series of articles about the Polish internet market for the news portal Gazeta.pl.
Focus on web development
From 2012, Netguru is developing applications, systems and internet solutions solely in Ruby on Rails. In 2013, HumanWay was acquired by the online recruitment house Grupa Pracuj. Following the transaction, Filipowski returns to Poznań, and Zygadlewicz exits Netguru, to continue organizing entrepreneurship community events under his own brands. Schmidt and Filipowski focus entirely on web development, therefore as a software house, Netguru begins to specialize deeper in applications for British, American, and German startups.
In February 2014, Netguru became an official partner for the open-source solution Spree Commerce. At the time, its portfolio included projects for the British market research provider GlobalWebIndex, the global language-learning platform Babbel, and other companies from over 20 countries. In May 2015, for the open content platform and media marketplace Transterra Media, Netguru implemented a mobile app which allows news outlets to manage and publish pre-produced videos. The same year, Netguru formed a team of digital product design specialists which contributed to brands such as IKEA and Volkswagen. It also began to design and build a personal assistant system for a domestic robot created by Temi.
|Presentation of Netguru for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award competition, YouTube video (in Polish)|
|#MeetOurMember: Netguru, Presentation for the technology accelerator Level39, YouTube video|
In November 2014, Netguru has introduced its relationships onto Israeli and the Middle East markets, to support entrepreneurs from across the UAE & the MENA region. While in August 2015, Netguru became official member of the London fintech community. In 2016, Netguru created a mobile platform that allows renting bicycles, for the American urban bicycle-sharing system Citi Bike. And in 2017, the company developed a digital system Helpr, which connects social care workers with care recipients in the British social care system.
Recently, the company has been recording an increase in revenues and growth, with no investment support – in 2016, over PLN 30M (60% year-over-year growth); in 2017, about PLN 40M (US$11.5M), and in 2018, around PLN 80M (US$212M). In 2013, the company had about 50 employees; in 2016, over 300, and as of the end of 2018, 500 employees all over Poland. Between 2016 and 2018, Netguru reached an EBITDA margin of 15%.
In addition to software development, Netguru has been developing its business consulting expertise and market analysis. Since 2017, the company has been prototyping products and building marketing strategies. It has helped large organisations to adopt business agility practices, and innovations with software robots.
On June 3, 2019, Netguru's chief operating officer Marek Talarczyk was named the new CEO, with Schmidt including the position of executive chairman, and Małgorzata Madalińska-Piętka joining the board as chief financial officer.
Netguru specializes in developing front-end and back-end web applications, mobile applications, product design, and consulting. With nearly 500 employees (as of October 2018), the company manages over 100 projects a year. According to its tagline, the company “builds digital products that let people do things differently.” Its portfolio includes SaaS marketplaces, e-commerce, big data systems, trading systems, and social networks.
Netguru is experienced in developing custom, cloud-based software, using APIs of Amazon Web Services, Heroku, Engine Yard, and DigitalOcean, integrating systems with external platforms, e.g. Salesforce, MailChimp, Google Analytics, and payment providers PayPal, Skrill, PayU and Stripe – as well as maintaining multi-server infrastructure including Docker-based virtualized deployments.
Since June 2017, Netguru offers dedicated workshops based on design-thinking sprints developed by Google, which are aimed to answer critical business questions through design, prototyping, and testing ideas with customers, to reduce the risk of bringing a new product, service, or feature to the market.
In May 2018, during the Microsoft machine-learning hackathon in Prague, with the software house MicroscopeIT, Netguru launched an image-recognition application based on a deep-learning technology. The outcome was an app that solves segmentation with neural networks, by detecting unwanted objects or sensitive data in pictures, and cutting them out with a pixel accuracy, using algorithms similar to those used in graphics software.
Netguru also partnered with the domestic robotic manufacturer Temi, on building the robotics middleware for the consumer assistant robot which moves freely indoors. A joint team created an operating system using natural language processing and transferring data in the cloud.
In 2010, Netguru developers created an online platform for the Apps for Good foundation that allows cooperation of teachers, students and experts in schools in the United States, Spain, Portugal, and Poland. The company has also built the application Smoke Detector, which takes data of a project captured in the customer relationship platform Salesforce, and with a machine-learning algorithm identifies which projects are likely to have issues, with a potential cause.
Mergers and acquisitions
In December 2017, in its first transaction, Netguru took over a team of developers and designers from the Internet-of-things company Vorm. In May 2018, Netguru merged with the IT support and DevOps provider ITTX, and in July 2018, it acquired the software house Bitcraft. As of June 2018, further acquisitions of larger and smaller entities are planned.
Netguru is reportedly considering a debut on the Warsaw Stock Exchange and wants to consolidate the software market in Poland, by surpassing the current IT leader, the banking software provider Asseco.
In April 2016, a team of Netguru project managers compiled Project Management Tactics for Pros, an e-book with guidance on IT projects, including preparation and budget. The publication covers tactics, strategies and methodologies on management, processes, communication and motivation. In June 2018, Netguru's designers team published Design Process for Pros, a live e-book actively curated by the designers community, with a set of best practices in web design projects.
Another e-book guide From Concept to Completion from March 2018, is an Agile software consulting walk-through, for understanding software development processes and tried-and-true techniques including preparatory work, setting a team, and mapping out a project.
In July 2016, Netguru published the London Startup Guide, a guide on tech business events, meetups, business incubators and communities of London. Consultants encourage to run a startup based in London, and present rules of doing business in the United Kingdom, based on successful startups and influencers.
State of Stack
In March 2016, Netguru, in collaboration with the survey-building service Typeform, released State of Stack, a report of the latest trends in web development, based on data from the study of the developer community. The study allowed to compare skills of each developer with the most desirable skills on the market.
Netguru Code College
With a vision of transferring knowledge and experience, the company organizes the Netguru Code College, free summer workshops for coding enthusiasts who are walked through processes of building a web application in a real working environment, by professionals who develop apps on a daily basis. The workshops which introduced Ruby on Rails took place in August 2017 and February 2018, and the weekend edition dedicated to React Native took place in March 2018.
In April 2018, Netguru hosted the Disruption Forum in Berlin, a meeting of the fintech community which turned into a regular fintech startup event. The idea is to engage experts who actively shape the fintech landscape in a constructive discussion about the future of fintech.
Meetups, workshops and webinars
Since August 2013, Netguru have coached Ruby on Rails around Poland, at free practical workshops aimed at developers who use PHP, Java, and .NET frameworks, or other languages on a daily basis but would like to learn Ruby on Rails, and the Level Up workshops for more advanced developers. Additionally, since 2015, Netguru have hosted weekend hackathons in its Poznan headquarters, and regular Ruby on Rails student workshops at the Katowice Institute of Information Technologies.
Since February 2015, Netguru managers have organized regular free project management workshops. Since April 2017, Netguru has hosted a regular designers event Dribbble Meetup, gathered around the social platform for designers Dribbble, as well as the Swift Poznan meetings and the PTAQ meetings. Netguru has also cooperated with universities, by hosting workshops and presentations, involving in academic life, and during monthly webinars for technology enthusiasts.
Trademark registration dispute
In 2014, the company filed an application to the European Union Intellectual Property Office, for the registration of the EU trade mark “Netguru,” in several classes related to computer services. However, it was rejected due to the lack of distinctiveness of the name. The company appealed to the General Court of the European Union, which dismissed the complaint, considering that the combination of the words "net" and "guru" appeared as advertising, nor it doesn't allow the target public to perceive the sign as an indication of the commercial origin of the goods and services in question.
Awards and accolades
Netguru is a three-time winner of the Fast 50 Central Europe competition where the accounting network Deloitte recognizes and profiles the 50 most dynamic technology companies in the region, based on the revenue growth over past five years. Netguru was ranked 5 in 2014, and 2015, and received the third award in 2017.
Netguru landed twice on the “FT 1000,” the list of Europe's fastest-growing companies in Europe according to Financial Times, in 2017 (ranked 188), and in 2018 (ranked 466). In 2016, the company was introduced by Forbes into the list of “Diamonds”, the list of the most promising companies in Poland.
In 2014, Netguru was named Top Ruby on Rails Developers, by the American market analysis firm Clutch, in the report on Market Leaders, based on in-depth interviews with clients. Then again in August 2017, Clutch named Netguru as one of the best outsourcing companies in the industry. In 2018, Schmidt and Filipowski were among Polish finalists of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award competition.
In 2011, Netguru wins the Aulery award, as one of the best tech companies with global potential. While Schmidt and Filipowski have been both placed twice on Brief magazine's list of The Most Creative in Business: in 2014, ranked 38, and in 2016, ranked 13.
In November 2017, Netguru, joined by the software house CashCape, received two awards in the Bankathon Berlin, for an application explaining the impact of the Payments Services Directive and other regulations.
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