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Eastern European startups DoxOut, G6 Solutions, and Tesseract Interactive have emerged in recent years from the Macedonian startup scene. The startup ecosystem of this small, formerly-Yugoslavian republic generally receives little attention, so we felt that it would be a good time to review a couple of Macedonian startups which have already made an impact in the tech community and one which you should keep an eye on going forward.
DoxOut, which launched in 2012 as a cloud-based office suite program, is perhaps the most well-known, having already been featured on TechCrunch and GigaOm within the past year. The cross-platform service, which stores files only on remote servers, allows users to manage and edit documents from any device, online or offline. The smart part of it is that one can use it on a smart phone or a tablet, and it will retain the same look and feel as the app on a desktop. By connecting a mobile device to a monitor, users can work with the app easier, as the mobile device turns into a keyboard.
The company bills this as a unique solution for office-suite software because users can access the exact same app on any device, online or offline. The program is developed by CreationPal, the development company behind the SportyPal, Ah Watch, and Presentation Pal apps.
G6 is a mobile app-development firm probably best known for its ‘Crack Your Screen’ app for Android. The app is fairly simple in that it allows users to prank their phones by making it seem as if they’ve seriously cracked their screen and damaged their phone, but it has been enormously popular since its release. Founded in 2010 by Teddy Pejoski, the company has attracted more than 10 million users to their flagship app and managed to take it to victory in the Samsung Smart App Challenge this past January. In addition to their primary app, the company offers an ‘HD’ version of ‘Crack Your Screen’, the Transparent Screen app, a Tic-Tac-Toe game, and the Minesweeper Marathon game. All the apps are free to install and, while none of the other apps have managed to achieve the same success as the original ‘Crack Your Screen’, they have had more than 500,000 installs for the ‘HD’ of the app and have have tens of thousands of installs for the others, as well.
In order to learn more about Tesseract Interactive, a game-development studio, I caught up with CEO and co-founder Ivan Ivanovski to find out where they came from, what they have been up to, and how they plan to build their business. To begin, Excubitor was incubated at and is backed with $40,000 (30,000 Euro) from Bulgarian seed and acceleration fund LAUNCHub. Having formed their business at LAUNCHub, the 6 friends who comprise the team at Tesseract Interactive began work on their debut game, Excubitor, which they anticipate releasing by the end of the year. Although they have not yet released the game, they have demonstrated their product and have developed a plan for attracting customers. Ivanovski says that they first gained some attention at events like Macedonian Code Camp 2012 and the 2012 Balkan Venture Forum Game Corner and they will turn to online platforms like Steam, GOG, GameStop, and Desura to sell their titles. In selling games online, Ivanvski says that they will also be able to distribute paid downloadable content (DLC).
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