May 19, 2020

Why Y Soft is growing in Australia and New Zealand

Adam O’Neill
Managing Director
Australia
Y Soft
Harry Allan
3 min
Why Y Soft is growing in Australia and New Zealand

Y Soft, a leading enterprise office solutions provider, has achieved strong growth in Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) with increasing opportunities coming from integrated printing and scanning solutions, and 3D print management solutions for education.
 

The company has recently undertaken a number of large contracts with a number of important businesses from both countries. Adam O’Neill, managing director, Australia, Y Soft, explained: “Y Soft’s growth in ANZ has been strong and we are currently looking at a revenue boost of 30 per cent year-on-year.

“In the last 12 months we have brought on customers such as Rawson Homes and Public Transports of Victoria, in association with Konica Minolta Business Solutions Australia, which has contributed to this result. We have also opened a new, larger office in Sydney.”

“Y Soft is looking to sustain that growth over the next 12 months by providing enterprise workflow solutions to the local market that organisations need. We are also looking at expanding our sales and consultancy team to support this business goal.”
 

The company has released two major offerings in the last six months including the latest version of its YSoft SafeQ Workflow Solutions Platform and the YSoft be3D eDee print management solution for education.

YSoft SafeQ is an integrated print management and advanced document capture solution that automates workflows to significantly improve productivity and reduce costs while increasing document security for organisations.

O’Neill said, “Traditionally, organisations have had one product for print solutions and one for scanning solutions, which means there has been some overlap. This has resulted in organisations essentially paying twice for some features across both products, and making it more difficult for employees to have a seamless printing and scanning experience. The YSoft SafeQ Workflow Solutions Platform prevents paying twice.”

YSoft be3D eDee is designed specifically for the education sector. It is the first 3D printer with print management features, and a comprehensive accounting system to manage and recover 3D printing costs.
 

O’Neill said, “3D in education is a growing market with more and more educational institutions adopting fleets of 3D printers to help illustrate difficult concepts, enhance hands-on interactive learning, and drive class engagement. There is massive opportunity for Y Soft to provide educational institutions with a solution that is simple to manage and cost-effective.”

Y Soft offers ANZ organisations global expertise and best practice coupled with an experienced local team that can facilitate software integrations, such as the ability to scan directly into Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems, and automatically report device usage into accounting systems.
 

O’Neill said, “We also have the option of 24x7 support, which means there is always someone available to ensure the continuity of business-critical systems.”

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Apr 29, 2021

C-suite spotight: Melanie Perkins, CEO, Canva

Canva
Australia
csuite
Leadership
Kate Birch
4 min
In our regular C-suite spotlight for APAC, we profile co-founder and CEO of Australian unicorn Canva, tech entrepreneur and billionaire Melanie Perkins
In our regular C-suite spotlight for APAC, we profile co-founder and CEO of Australian unicorn Canva, tech entrepreneur and billionaire Melanie Perkins...

Who is Melanie Perkins?

She’s the co-founder and CEO of Australian unicorn online design platform Canva, who ultimately became one of tech’s youngest female CEOs, at just 30, and recently became a billionaire aged 35, making her one of Australia’s richest and youngest. 

Why is she in the spotlight right now?

Because less than a year after securing a US$6bn valuation during the pandemic, which provided a big boost to business, Canva has recently more than doubled its valuation, securing a $15bn valuation, which makes Perkins a billionaire, according to Forbes. The valuation comes in the wake of a new funding round in the first week of April 2021 led by T. Rowe Price and Dragoneer and raising $71m. At the same time, Canva announced its business has passed $500m in annualised revenue, up 130% from the year before. 

What is Canva and why is it so successful?

Launched in 2013 by co-founders Melanie Perkins (CEO), Cliff Obrecht (COO) and Cameron Adams (Chief Product Officer), Sydney-headquartered Canva is a free-to-use online graphic design product that allows users to create everything from social media graphics to presentations and other visual content, as well as offering paid subscriptions like Canva Pro and Canva for Enterprise, with 3 million of its now 55 million users taking paid subscriptions. 

Accruing 750,000 users in its first year, following a number of rounds of investment including from Mary Meeker’s Bond Capital in 2019 and this month’s massive funding round, Canva now boasts 55 million users across 190 countries, with offices in Sydney, Beijing, Manila, and most recently Austin, Texas, and is valued at $3.2 billion. 

And while the company was originally most popular with SMEs, helping them draft and design print and digital assets, it’s since grown to become a real-time collaboration suite that’s being used by big firms including McKinsey, Salesforce and American Airlines. In fact, Canva claims that 85% of Fortune 500 companies use the platform’s services. They continue to add new features and during the pandemic, added presenter video recording tools. 

How did Perkins get there?

The idea of Canva came to Perkins when she was at the university of Perth, where to earn money on the side she taught students design programmes. Many of her students found platforms like Adobe complicated and frustrating, and the ideas came to her to simplify and democratise design, to make it more approachable and accessible, more collaborative, and ultimately to empower all in design. So, she and university peer Cliff Obrecht, who became Canva co-founder and Perkins’ husband, created an online school yearbook design business, Fusion Yearbooks, to test it out. Operating from her mum’s living room, the yearbook design business was a massive success, expanding to New Zealand and France, and remains the largest yearbook publisher in Australia. 

However, Perkins did not give up on her dream to create a one-stop-shop design site and at one point spent three months living with her brother in San Francisco where she pitched to more than 100 venture capitalists, all of whom rejected Canva. It was following a chance encounter at a conference in Perth with Silicon Valley venture capitalist Bill Tai, Perkins was winning over major investors including Hollywood celebrities Woody Harrelson and Owen Wilson and building out Canva’s design platform with a fast-growing team of tech engineers and a high-profile tech advisor, Lars Rasmussen who co-founded Google Maps. 

It was in 2012 when things really kicked off however when Perkins and Obrecht found a tech co-founder in Cameron Adams. The same year, they closed their first funding round, which was oversubscribed and raised $1.5m, with Canva going live in 2013. In 2019, an $85m funding round led by Silicon Valley investor Mary Meeker’s Bond Capital gave the company a valuation of $3.2bn, before the most recent funding around in April 2021 leading to a valuation of $15bn. 

In her own words… 

"I think it's pretty important to know that every single person is going through their own trials and tribulations. Knowing that it's tricky for everyone, that any adventure will be filled with rejections and littered with obstacles – somehow makes the adventure a little less lonely. And it's most important for people who feel like they are on the outside to know this."

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