“Oprius Software has been converting free trials to paid users at over 40 per cent per month when the industry standard is 10 per cent conversion from free trials.”
Alan Smith, Owen Mead-Robbins, and Jason Chu, the three partners of Oprius Software, love software, and Oprius is a labour of love. The three of them spent two years without a paycheque developing the sales software that is their main product. But the hard work has paid off. A year after the launch, they are at the break-even point.
“And it’s been great fun,” says Smith. “Much like a university project that has gone really well.”
Oprius started off with a bang. In developing the original business plan, they won the 2005 challenge organized by University of Victoria’s Innovation and Development Corp. What they learned from that experience, says Smith, “is find what the market is and build for that.” The market they found was network marketing. “And there is a market for what we produce. It just doesn’t happen to be in Victoria. We sell around the world and have had great success in the United States, Australia, and the Netherlands,” Smith says.
Oprius Software Inc. provides sales contact management software for the “solopreneur.” The Internet-based product helps independent business people such as artists, writers, and real estate agents keep track of sales calls, contact information, and schedules. In fact, just about any bit of information you need to manage your business and keep in contact with your clients is available through their software.
“A fully Internet-based product works really well for our clients,” says Smith. “There is no hardware or discs you need to buy. You just download the software from our main server onto your computer and you can access it from any computer through your secure password.”
“The development phase was the most difficult,” notes Smith. “We looked at all sorts of customer relations management software and realized most of it was far too complicated and sophisticated for what the solopreneur needed or wanted.”
“So the trick was to take out all the stuff they didn’t need and put in the information they did need and make it simple.”
They have big plans for the year ahead. “Now that we have some traction in the market, we are going to expand our marketing efforts to other network marketing niches and grow as much as we can,” says Smith with a smile.