back to article Trello, hello, hello: Todo list biz gobbled by Atlassian for $425m

Freemium digital post-it business board Trello is to be acquired by productivity software floggers Atlassian. The deal is worth $425m, according to TechCrunch, with the productivity software business to pay $360m in cash and $65m in restricted shares and options for Trello. The deal is expected to close by the end of March …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Ker-ching!

    Move the 'Cash Out' card to 'Done' column

  2. John 104

    Cool

    More productivity helping tools in one place. We use it here at work and it is decent.

  3. Erik4872

    Selling the mining equipment in the dotcom Gold Rush

    During the first dotcom bubble, companies like Sun, Cisco and the telcos were raking in vast sums of money. Back then, every single one of the dotcoms had to cater for either their own or colocated data center space, and a large amount of equipment. The second dotcom bubble has the cloud, which actually lets crazy startups hang around for a lot longer -- the VC money doesn't have to pay for a huge owned infrastructure when AWS or Google or Microsoft offers capacity.via a credit card.

    Companies like Atlassian are now the new vendors of Gold Rush mining implements. The hot new thing is apps, and specifically DevOps-friendly apps. For consumer-focused phone apps this model makes perfect sense -- just picture a bunch of hipsters with fedoras, neckbeards, man-buns and PBR in the fridge, sitting around a cafeteria table in an expensive San Francisco office space banging out JavaScript. This environment needs tools like the ones Atlassian markets because the change is so frequent, staff is incredibly thin and the companies "need" to attract hip social media types with tools that work the way they want. On the corporate side, stuff like JIRA lets a company write a check to push the Agile/DevOps button and have their developers talking about stories, features and burndown rates. Actually, it requires a complete culture shift to work properly, but companies still like it because Agile lets them do away with a lot of the expensive planning, break the app into pieces and send it all over the world chasing lower cost labor. (I've worked at places that have gone Agile without the culture change and it's a mess.)

    I actually think the end is coming pretty soon for the second bubble. Like the first one, we got a whole bunch of neat stuff out of it, but people are eventually going to get tired of the same old stuff and move on from social media and apps. I'm guessing IoT is going to be the next bubble to inflate, but we'll see. Either way, Atlassian is in good shape - IoT stuff needs to be programmed too.

  4. ivant
    Thumb Down

    Atlassian are making crappy tools, IMO. They are slow and overly complex to use. JIRA is a fine example of this.

    They bought bitbucket a while ago and it starts to show there too. I'm afraid the same will happen with Trello.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And my experience is the exact opposite, setup jira agile with bitbucket, bamboo and confluence via application links, and you have a very powerful, full development cycle tool where everything is tracked from start to end.

      It makes all other tools look crap, and I evaluate lots of tools like this. It's essentially free for small teams, and pricing is very reasonable for all team sizes, as you only pay for the bits you want.

      Ours costs about 1/10 of our previous solution and it's 10x better too, and very reliable, near 100% uptime over 3 years, substantialy better than most other management systems in our organisation.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        More interesting is that they're valued at around $5bn, bought this software for $425m, and yet make barely any profit on average (up some years, down others).

        They do make good software but they definitely fit in with the Web 2.0 valuation models.

        Performance has increased recently as they did a lot of work behind the scenes to improve it. I used to work with one of the guys who was hired to give you that improved performance you now see.

      2. ivant

        Well, here are some of my experiences

        (ENTERING RANT MODE)

        We are a small team and we have to set things up ourselves. So this process is important for me. We're using JIRA + Confluence Cloud and bitbucket. JiRA and confluence work together out of the box, but setting up bitbucket was a 12-step process?

        We have about 600 registered issues in total (open, closed and everything), but even when they were 200 most operations are slow. Even opening a single issue on a separate page takes more than a second (and it's not my internet connection). All this makes the site feel sluggish.

        When I log in the admin console, they often tell me I need to reindex the database to make it faster. Why do they tell me that? I haven't changed anything. They've updated the plugins, but I have to click on a button to reindex? Just reindex the stupid thing! Not that I saw any speed-up after reindexing...

        Confluence and JIRA are using one markup language, and bitbucket is using another.

        They removed the time tracking plugins from the standard installation and they want us to pay more than we pay for JIRA to get alternative ones.

        Initially, we used JIRA and Confluence as part of another organization. And when we moved out of it, we wanted to export this data and import it in our new instances in the cloud (they were called On Demand then). For Confluence it was an easy process, but for JIRA it was practically impossible. We needed to export them from the old version that the company was using, and import them in the same version of JIRA. We then had to upgrade JIRA version by version to the latest one. Then export the issues again and import them in the cloud. Easy!

        So we just moved the open issues by hand and moved on.

        And this other organization? They were stuck with the older version of JIRA, because they were using it from 2007 and had a lot of customization in the database, which they told me, was the norm in early JIRA installs.

        (RANT MODE OFF)

        Probably the biggest problem with JIRA is, that they are trying to use the same tool for each team size and for each methodology. Large teams in enterprise organizations have very different needs than small teams in startups. Agile methodologies are very different from the waterfall. No worries, we'll just cram them up on the same tool.

        To accomplish that, they don't create a tool. They create a platform. And you have to rely on plugins to get the tool you need. And many of the plugins are third-party, which means that their behavior and quality varies. And they may not release the plugin for the new version of JIRA.

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