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Andrea Di Clemente's picture
By Andrea Di Clemente
Sunday, February 20, 2011 - 09:30

Applicom, the maker of Apollo project management and CRM, is not for sale: our users come first

In the last few years, a number of web-based project management solutions appeared. A great number of them. I should know: Apollo is one of them. We started building Apollo when the market wasn't as crowded (although it was starting), and waited a long time before releasing it to the public; the main reason is that we didn't want to put out there something that we wouldn't use. And we were picky. Very picky.

Apollo is still missing some of the features we considered (and consider) crucial. However, at this point we know that the number of great features now available outweigh the missing ones -- which are coming soon. (See: internationalisation which is 98% ready, project templates, reply-by-email, API, and email dropbox just to name a few). The main point I want to make is that we are heavily user-focussed. We care about our users more than we care about anything else -- even more than making money. We proved it: Apollo has been free for a long time, whereas many others would have gone "paid" much earlier. We are convinced that this is a winning strategy: we are focussed on doing things right, and will reap the fruit of our labour once the time is right.

Over the last little while, two important acquisitions have happened in the "web based project management" software world: Manymoon and Bantam Live were both acquired by bigger companies. They were both funded by Venture Capitalists (who are probably still partying), and were both purchased for substantial amounts of money. In general, if you manage to start a company and then sell your company for a huge profit, then you are a winner: you end up with a huge pile of cash in your pockets, a very well paying job, and the possibility to keep this job for quite a while (without worrying about the next round of funding not turning up). At the same time, you also wonder if you really want to keep on sweating blood on a project now that it's no longer yours (and have enough money to support yourself for decades without working). What about the existing users? In that case, things can go well, or not-so-well. That's always the case, obviously: even as a startup, your next round of funding might just not happen for example. However, while users will have some peace of mind in terms of the software staying alive, there are always questions in terms of what direction the software will take. And that can be a dangerous one.

Apollo is different. We are not subject to venture capitalist funding. Our company would do just fine even if we never started selling Apollo. We focussed a lot of resources into it, incredible amounts of time, and obviously hope that Apollo will be successful. But, we don't have to cross our fingers hoping that our investors will be happy with our numbers, and -- more importantly -- are not creating Apollo in order to sell our company to somebody else. Apollo as a whole is not for sale, no way, no how. We are not looking for sponsors; we realise that Apollo has a huge potential, but the main reason to work on it is that we like doing it.

We will continue developing Apollo, and will make sure Apollo will keep going towards the right direction: becoming a fantastic, fully features project management system used by thousands of people, and consistently improved according to our users' requests and what we, and our developers, think is right (and no, we are not opinionated). To us, Apollo isn't a joy ride that will end with a fat cheque: it's a mission, that will continue, while providing thousands of users with a piece of software that they use, and are grateful for, every day.

11 comments so far

Eric's picture


Sun, 02/20/2011 - 14:31


Nice post Andrea!

Good to hear the direction of the project and to know that you are not for sale.

Looking forward to project templates!


Manu's picture


Mon, 02/21/2011 - 14:20


wisely decision

Matthew's picture


Mon, 02/21/2011 - 20:30


Looking forward to the new features- but I do love the current simplicity and speed so be sure to keep the right balance.

Apollo has quickly become part of my daily work routine.

Keep up the great work.

Andrea Di Clemente's picture

Andrea Di Clemente

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 16:48


Thank you!

Chad's picture


Thu, 02/24/2011 - 01:45



Started using your CPM just a couple days and love it. Can't wait to see what is added in the future!

One suggestion I have is a Android App and iPhone App. Would love to update and view current projects I have.

Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 10:32



We have an mobile site ready, and our users are loving it!
It's currently in beta. If you email us your workspace name, we will enable the mobile site for you.



Menno Richardson's picture

Menno Richardson

Thu, 03/03/2011 - 05:18


Great article and a good vision. I've been using Apollo for a couple of days now and it made my live as a owner of a webdesign company alot easier! Great piece of software.

Cant wait for the i18n support though!

Naomi's picture


Sun, 03/13/2011 - 10:29


Excellent, excellent. You have both been so incredibly responsive to my emails so far. I'm very heartened by this statement of purpose and resolve. Thanks much.

Jonathan Sharp's picture

Jonathan Sharp

Tue, 04/12/2011 - 02:55


Way to go Andrea & team! Not taking VC is a hard choice for some, but well worth it. I'm cheering for you!

Lillian's picture


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 19:46



I've recently tried the Apollo project management tool. I really like the interface and find it to be pretty user-friendly. I have a question though, how can I prioritize projects and task between contacts? I need to manage a tech team, all of which are internal users and I can't find an easy way to click on a contact and be able to see everything they're working on, and to prioritize everything.


Tony Mobily's picture

Tony Mobily

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 21:38


Hi Lilian,

Apollo is all about collaboration. We don't have task priorities right now. However, one possible solution is to arrange the tasks in order of priority within a task list.

We are working on a new overview which will focus on the workspace as a whole, and the ability to see what each user is working on.