Feeds

Goodbye 37signals, hello Basecamp

Campfire, Highrise for sale in slimming exercise

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

After a six-month review of its operations, Jason Fried's 37signals has decided on a wholesale liposuction of its business: it plans to offload all of its products but one, and assume the name of that product, Basecamp.

The decade-old Basecamp is the staple of collaborative project management for 285,000 companies (and sparked a market category that still spawns startups). However, outside the Basecamp circle, 37signals is also known as the outfit that created and open-sourced Ruby on Rails.

However, like Bilbo Baggins, 37signals' successes seem to have left it thin and stretched, “like butter spread over too much toast”. Fried's blog post says “we've become a bit scattered, a bit diluted. Nobody does their best work when they're spread too thin.”

According to Fried, the outfit is now considering the future of other products like Highrise and Campfire. They might be sold off completely or spun off into subsidiaries in which 37signals Basecamp will retain an interest. If no buyers are found, the products will still exist, but won't be offered to new customers.

“Basecamp is our best idea and our biggest winner,” Fried writes. “Over 15 million people have Basecamp accounts, and just last week another 6,622 companies signed up for new Basecamp accounts.”

Fried notes that it would not be the first time the company has put products into eternal maintenance mode: “We did this successfully in 2012 with Ta-da List, Writeboard, and Backpack, so we know how to make it work”.

The company expects Campfire to be worth “single digit millions” and Highrise “in the tens of millions”, and says it's in discussion with some interested parties.

It's interesting to note that 37signals hasn't taken the standard advice of the VC world and taken itself to wholesale IPO. “We want to maintain the kind of company where everyone knows everyone's name,” Fried writes. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Yes, yes, Steve Jobs. Look what I'VE done for you lately – Tim Cook
New iPhone biz baron points to Apple's (his) greatest successes
Lords take revenge on REVENGE PORN publishers
Jilted Johns and Jennies with busy fingers face two years inside
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Edward who? GCHQ boss dodges Snowden topic during last speech
UK spies would rather 'walk' than do 'mass surveillance'
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.