4 min read | Posted on: March 31 2022 | Last updated on: April 14 2022
Brikl: One of the hottest Belgian startups of 2021
What springs to mind when you think of Belgium? Brussels’ Gothic cathedrals or the seat of the European Union? Or a burgeoning startup culture that tech investors are watching with interest? Or waffles?
A recent article by TechCrunch quizzed five investors from Brussels who noted that Belgium has a “dynamic ecosystem of health actors, from biotech firms, universities and startups, and scaleups.”
Brikl is proud to be a player in this dynamic ecosystem and prouder still to have been voted one of the ten most promising startups of 2021 by EU Startups.
Here are some reasons why we’re one to watch this year (and beyond).
We were working remotely before it was a ‘thing’.
Brikl’s belief that talent knows no borders has led to a diverse team of ambitious developers, architects, innovators, creators, and marketers. Brikl’s founders Maarten Boone, Tobias Meixner, and Jason Reinhardt have only met in person a handful of times, while some of our global colleagues have never met.
“Working in different time zones without a collective, physical space has become the new normal for many companies now,” Jason comments. “But rather than being forced into this new way of thinking, we recognized the many benefits that come from being remote. Dispensing with the daily commute and being able to work in a comfortable, tailored environment are being hailed by researchers as catalysts for productivity. We can attest that the ambition and innovation coming from our teams hasn’t been dampened by remote working - if anything, it’s accelerated our creativity.”
We are a unicorn in the market.
Our next-generation automation is saving businesses time, money, and effort - three of its most valuable resources. Our 3D Configurator allows anyone, from designers to business owners and customers, to drop flat, 2D designs into the platform, rendering them into 3D instantly, eliminating time wastage. This automates the design-to-manufacturing process for customer products, resulting in print-ready files in just minutes and saving businesses hundreds of hours annually. But that’s not all.
Brikl is also the only eCommerce software platform that provides an end-to-end solution for selling custom products online. And with a single click, a business can generate an interactive display for an online shop or team store.
“Businesses all over the world, especially in today’s climate, are trying to streamline their operations, and automation is the key to this,” Maarten observes. “Brikl’s end-to-end suite of customization, design and commerce tools has given it a competitive position within the market. And we’ve instilled the platform with a simplicity-led design that ensures plug and play and complete ease of use.
“We’re constantly hearing how much time and money we’re saving companies, which allows them the focus they need to stay agile to changes in customer behavior and fluctuations in the market as a whole. We’d say to companies if you’re imagining what your business could achieve with more people, imagine what your people could achieve with more time.”
Despite all of its challenges, 2020 was the year of our growth spurt.
While the pandemic added a layer of complexity to every market, it also presented many businesses with an opportunity to move online and be where their customers were. Starting from July, Brikl grew month over month - a trajectory that has increased five-fold in the first quarter of 2021. As increasing numbers of people looked to the outdoors for fitness, Brikl onboarded leading companies in cycling and triathlon gear in the US, Europe, and Asia. “What we achieved is a testament to our people who overcame personal challenges and the uncertainty of tumultuous times to rally behind our vision,” Tobias states. To date, over half of all cycling wear sales now go through the Brikl platform. The company’s sights are set on expanding into volleyball, football, cheerleading and soccer in the future.
We’ve tripled the team in the last six months.
Our people are at the forefront of what we do, which is why Brikl is committed to engaging with its employees and customers in a highly personal and individualized manner. “One of the first things Jason ever said to me was, ‘I never want to hear about you missing a football game, a school recital or a family gathering,’' Suz Pathmanathan, Brikl’s Director of Marketing, said. “From this first interaction, I felt seen, not just as an employee but on a very human level. You hear a lot about company values and culture, but this is as much about how the company acts when nobody is watching.”
And when it comes to how the company interacts with its clients, the same rules apply. “Every company is offered a highly tailored, no-strings demo based on their specific challenges and a test account that allows them to test the platform before they commit,” Jason comments. “Our customers’ needs are at the heart of what we do. And the growing excitement around the platform has made us see that we need the talent to match, sustain and exceed the level of care and attention we’re used to giving. This is why Brikl has set its sights on recruiting expert talent and specialists that will continue to spur its momentum forward”.
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