Google acquires no-code app development platform AppSheet

Google is on something of a buying spree. On the heels of its acquisition of retail inventory management startup Pointy, the tech giant today announced that it has acquired AppSheet, a no-code enterprise app development platform, for an undisclosed sum. According to Google Cloud vice president Amit Zavery, the acquisition will complement Google’s strategy to “reimagine the application development space” by “help[ing] [businesses] innovate” with workflow automation, app support, and API management.

“With this acquisition, customers will be able to develop richer applications at scale that leverage not only Google Sheets and Forms which are already popular with customers, but other top Google technologies like Android, Maps and Google Analytics,” wrote Zavery in a blog post. “In addition, AppSheet customers can continue to integrate with a number of cloud-hosted data sources.”

In a press release, AppSheet CEO Praveen Sheshadri stressed that existing AppSheet services won’t go away anytime soon, but that they will eventually migrate to Google Cloud. Moreover, the AppSheet team of over 20 people will join Google Cloud, where they’ll ensure that integrations with cloud-hosted data sources like Office 365, Salesforce, Box, Dropbox, iOS, web browsers, and databases hosted in other clouds are further developed and maintained.

“Moving forward, we expect to combine AppSheet’s core strengths with Google Cloud’s deep industry expertise in verticals like financial services, retail, and media & entertainment,” wrote Sheshadri. “There will likely be a period where we have to settle into the new environment before forging ahead, but you should start seeing the benefits of today’s announcement soon … Our core mission is unchanged — we want to ‘democratize’ app development by enabling as many people as possible to build and distribute applications without writing a line of code.”

In a nutshell, AppSheet allows developers without extensive programming knowledge to collect rich data (e.g., geographic data and indoor location data), imbue apps with AI, or automatically move data. The platform can collect data from any device, instantly syncing to the original data source, and it performs analyses in real time using custom-built dashboards and automatic reports. Apps created using AppSheet can capture images, log locations, scan barcodes, deliver notifications, generate reports, send emails, accept signatures, work offline, install across devices, and apply logic. Plus, they’re able to update and maintain existing data sets while respecting security and organization policies.

More than 200,000 apps have been deployed using AppSheet’s development suite, and over 18,000 “active app creators” build apps with AppSheet each month.

“AppSheet’s ability to power a range of applications — from [customer relationship management] to field inspections and personalized reporting — combined with Google Cloud’s deep expertise in key verticals, will further enable digital transformation across industries like financial services, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, communication and media & entertainment,” wrote Zavery.

Prior to the acquisition, AppSheet — which Sheshadri cofounded in 2014 with fellow Cornell graduate Brian Sabino — raised $19.3 million in venture capital across several rounds contributed by Shasta Ventures, New Enterprise Associates, and other investors. As of April 2019, it counted over 6,000 companies among its client base, including Husqvarna Group, Solvay, Tigo Guatemala, American Electric Power, M&O Partners, and Boom Technology.

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