Featured BizSpark Windows 8 App Startup - Kapitall
Kapitall is the fusion of investing & gaming. A compelling alternative to traditional brokerage & a dynamic twist on classic simulation games.
Learn more about how Kapitall got started and in our interview with Co-Founder and CTO, Serge Kreiker,
Tell us about your app:
Kapitall is the fusion of investing and gaming. Kapitall’s gamified platform provides the most intuitive, fun and educational investing experience. It’s simple, accessible, and revolutionary.
Anyone - no matter skill or age - can learn, compete and engage with the stock market. Kapitall is particularly appealing to Millennials and the digitally hip. Kapitall is a compelling alternative to the traditional online brokerage, and a dynamic twist on classic strategy or simulation games.
What did you do before creating your company?
Software Engineer at Bloomberg
How did you get the idea for your company?
The founding team included the former head of the Human Interface Group at Apple and a video game entrepreneur. We were sitting down one summer wondering why the current market experiences were so not-fun, not-engaging, not-intuitive; so out of touch with modern UI and technology; and seemingly built on such out of dates technology. Kapitall was our answer.
What has been your biggest "aha" moment since founding your company?
The biggest "aha", as funny as this sounds, is that we were right. Take away the barriers, make investing more accessible and enjoyable, and people who might otherwise steer clear of the markets will engage.
Tell us about your funding history – are you VC, Angel or self-funded? Are you currently looking for funding?
We are currently VC funded. We are gaining real traction in terms of acquisition, engagement and monetization. More money would help us get to the promiseland faster. I guess that would mean “yes”.
How many employees do you have? How many of them are developers?
15 employees. 3 developers.
Microsoft technologies that you are using in conjunction with the development of your application:
Microsoft Visual Studio 2013
Why did you decide to build an app for the Windows Store?
The Web Application Template (WAT) project has made it straightforward to package a HTML5 app into a Windows 8 app; which is a great way to explore the ecosystem and user base with minimal effort.
How are you leveraging the unique capabilities of the Windows or Windows Phone platform? The Windows or Windows Phone Hardware?
By using the WAT project we are most heavily relying on the HTML5/CSS3 support of IE11. We also worked closely with the multi-touch gesture support in IE in order to really bring the native touch feel to life on the site.
What advice do you have for a developer building an App on the Windows platform?
Visual Studio has really evolved into a great development environment. Without really diving deep into the product, I was able to see the enhancements to the interface and the overall speed. I also noticed a lot of the app configuration options were available in menus so I would definitely recommend getting familiar with the all the project setting menus. With the WAT project a lot of extra tools had been put together and the developer forums are a great place to find out about extra tools.
What is the biggest hurdle you had to overcome while building your App?
The biggest hurdles came from some inconsistencies between Windows Surface IE11 and the Windows App webview. The version of IE that shipped with the surface is slightly newer than the webview so some of the tags and events do vary between the browser and app. With all the great marketing extras comes some additional work in terms of creating your logo in all the different sizes, so here's a heads up not to wait till the end of the project to get started on that.
Can you describe the relationship that you have had with Microsoft in building your startup?
The Windows 8.1 app is just the beginning of our relationship with MSFT. We’re excited about growing our partnership and further integrating our business.
What do you think of the BizSpark Program and how has it helped you?
The program provides startups with incredible opportunities and support. We believe programs such as BizSpark are vital to the industry and the future of tech. We’re happy to be partners and appreciate all the visibility and support.
Why would an entrepreneur turn to Microsoft for help in building scale, a team, or using software?
Microsoft has incredible expertise, scale and resource. Generally speaking, these are areas where entrepreneurs can run short or have gaps. The fact that Microsoft is willing to lend some of their expertise, scale and resource is an opportunity that entrepreneurs would be crazy to pass up.
What is the one piece of advice you have for young startups?
Keep moving forward always. Kind of like a shark. If they stop swimming, they die.