Formally Advising The Buddy Platform

I love startups. I love developers. I love Seattle.

Given that my own startup will be based in the Seattle area (news on that coming soon!) it is important to me that the Seattle startup scene thrives. I’ve thrown myself out to the community and have been blown away by all the great people and fantastic ideas. I’ve lost count now of how many early stage folks I’ve met with in the last 6 months.

One startup that reached out to me was Buddy.com. We hit it off right away and it was clear that my passion for developers and their solutions for developers were a perfect match. Today we announced that I’m taking on an advisory role for Buddy. I’ll be helping Buddy’s founders, David McLauchlan (CEO) and Jeff MacDuff (CTO) with their product direction and fundraising.

I am asked frequently “What do you think is next for the mobile space?”.  I like to shock people by saying “I think mobile’s old, dead, and boring.” 

This gets their attention. I say this because if you define mobile as “apps running on devices people carry around” it’s true. While there is certainly a lot of room for continued growth in the sale (and variety) of mobile devices, and we have not seen the end of the incredible growth of apps for those devices, the reality is the value is shifting away from mobile.

The value is shifting from something interesting happening on the device to something interesting happening in the cloud that is accessible from multiple devices.

This is one of the reasons I think the Buddy guys are on to something. Developers have enough pain to deal with getting their client apps working well across the hugely fragmented smartphone space. Now they need to invest deeply in building interesting cloud services that power those apps. Building scalable, robust, and flexible cloud services is hard.  Buddy makes it easy.

Geekwire’s John Cook did a nice write-up here.

Here’s the press release they released today:

Buddy.com Announces Charlie Kindel, Ex-Windows Phone Developer Chief Joins as an Advisor

Former Microsoft executive brings a combination of world-class experience with mobile developer platforms and a mastery of organizational efficiency.

SEATTLE – October 24th, 2011 – Buddy Platform, Inc. today announced that well-known former Microsoft executive, Charlie Kindel would be taking up a formal role with Buddy, joining the company’s Board of Advisors.

Buddy, launched last month, offers instant cloud services for mobile apps on any OS platform. Since launch, developers have been flocking to the service, with developer signups far exceeding forecasts. With the addition of Charlie Kindel as an advisor, Buddy adds significant depth and experience to the Company.

“Buddy has made great strides since our launch last month. Developer interest is high, and we’ve been delighted with the partnership opportunities already presented to us”, said David McLauchlan, CEO. “Having Charlie agree to come on board gives us an incredible opportunity to benefit from his decades of experience building and evangelizing developer platforms.”

“Charlie had an incredible impact as a technologist, as a leader and as an evangelist when he was at Microsoft. We look forward to him bringing that passion and experience to Buddy”, continued Jeff MacDuff, CTO of Buddy.

Buddy is self-funded, but the growth experienced since launch means there will shortly be a need for outside investment. Kindel will be joining San Francisco-based Ron Spector, Managing Director of Circini Partners who, over a 20 year career spanning venture capitalism, investment banking and entrepreneurship, brings a strong Bay Area perspective to the business. “Having a great set of advisors will be a tremendous asset as we work through the fund-raising process”, said McLauchlan, “Ron brings a wealth of experience, having been involved in fundraising from both sides of the table while also being involved in early-stage businesses in senior operational roles too.” Added MacDuff, “Ron and Charlie are two of the best in their fields”.

It comes as no surprise that Kindel is passionate about mobile, cloud and developer platforms given his contributions over a storied career at Microsoft. “I am firmly convinced that the value of the mobile space is moving from the client to the cloud and developers need help there. Buddy allows developers building cloud based mobile apps to focus on their core scenarios and get more done faster”, said Kindel. “As soon as Buddy launched I tried it myself and was blown away by how easy they made it”.

Buddy is live today, and interested developers on any OS-platform can sign up for a free account at http://buddy.com and be developing apps with cloud functionality in just minutes. Biographies on the entire Buddy team can be found at http://buddy.com/Pages/About.aspx.

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