A Chat with Bram Wiepjes, Co-Founder and CEO at Online Database Tool: Baserow

There is a tremendous global shortage of developers today and a huge need for applications that cater to the specific needs of teams in organisations (e.g. marketing, HR, operations, product management, DevOps, etc.). A lot of data is still captured and manipulated in Excel spreadsheets by ops teams (often heavily understaffed) who try to provide insights, keep track of progress and build dashboards.

That is where Baserow comes in. Baserow is an open-source, no-code database collaborative platform startup company. The platform enables non-technical teams to capture and organize data to trigger intelligent business insights, automate processes, and efficiently build customizable applications.

Bram Wiepjes / baserow · GitLab

How did you come up with the idea for the company?

In 2019, I was 25 working as a developer when I started a side project developing an open-source database spreadsheet hybrid platform. My aim was to help users curate and make sense of the data within their organizations.

The project grew to become Baserow. Our software was designed for non-technical users across organisations – from HR and marketing to finance and operations departments – to quickly and efficiently build personalized applications with a scalable database.

Unlike our competitors, Baserow is an open-source platform offering customers the choice of SaaS or self-hosting solutions, freeing users from vendor lock-in. Furthermore, Baserow allows users to customize the platform with personalized plug-ins and gives customers complete freedom to own and manage the applications they develop. As an API-first platform, Baserow integrates seamlessly with any tool needed to build a no-code stack. Finally, our database is designed for scale to remain fast and stable at huge volumes of data.

How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?

There are very few open-source alternatives today. And the ones available have a very different mission to Baserow. While we started with a no-code database module, in the last year, we have embarked on launching a web app builder and a workflow automation module, due in the coming months.

Our ultimate ambition is to build a database that will form the starting foundation for the world’s first complete open-source, no-code toolchain.

What can we hope to see from Baserow in the future?

Over the last two years, we have gained steady traction in the open-source community, with users building back-end databases for mobile applications, running AI/ML models on top of the no-code database, or organising marketing campaigns with many stakeholders. Baserow also sees interest from the public sector users where open-source cloud applications are a strategic priority. With more than a thousand sign-ups in June, we are happy to see our user base continue to grow monthly.

In July 2022, we launched our paid Premium version of Baserow. The Premium version provides users with additional features including row coloring, row comments, and additional data export formats.

We are due to launch our Enterprise edition later in Q3, which includes direct support. The enterprise version will offer features such as a robust user-management, role-based access control, and access to the Baserow enterprise team support. We will continue to develop most features as open source, and monetize our software by offering paid tiers with direct support to larger teams and companies.

Later this year and early 2023, we will launch a front-end web builder module and an automation module to enable our users to build end-to-end business applications without code and no vendor lock-in.

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