Share your ‘launch story’ with us…
The iPad launched in 2010 and revolutionised the concept of computing. Whilst sales of iPad exploded, the world was grappling with whether this was simply a larger smartphone or could it be a genuine productivity device. There was one big problem – it was a powerful computing device which lacked the key hardware to be a productivity machine – a keyboard.
Brydge first launched in 2012 as a highly successful Kickstarter project (Top 5 of that year) with the original Brydge keyboard for iPad utilizing unique, patented technology. It broke records and instantly developed a cult following. The premise was simple – design a product that both enabled laptop-like productivity but at the same having a beautiful design and aesthetic.
Brydge was born in California, raised in Singapore (by Australian founders – Nick Smith, Justine Smith & Toby Mander-Jones), and now calls Park City, Utah home.
In late 2019 we acquired Hengedocks to accelerate our entry into the remote desktop space and in turn launch our line-up of docking stations.
Fast forward to 2021 and Brydge has sold over 1,000,000 units and our vision is to become a household name and the go-to brand for innovative and design-focused peripherals for the mobile and remote desktop.
What is your mission and has this changed throughout the years?
People now work and play everywhere.We are in the midst of a generational shift to remote working, mobility and the hybrid office. Consumers and workers need to be able to work and consume wherever they are, whenever they want.
Our initial focus was the iPad. We saw incredible potential to create the perfect computing device by designing a keyboard that delivered the best 2-in-1 computing device.
After the initial success, we stepped back and saw a gap in the market to create a globally recognized brand focused on devices that enable productivity and a seamless experience across the mobile and connected desktop.
This is now our mission. We want to enable maximum productivity for the user wherever, whenever (at home, at the office, on the road and in the classroom).
How does Brydge differentiate itself from the competition?
Our DNA and focus is delivering products based on design, innovation and high quality – and a seamless experience for the user. Everything we do is focused on these core pillars.
We want customers to be proud to own a Brydge product and we have a big focus on customer experience in all touch points. Often customers refer to owing a “Brydge” and not just a keyboard or dock.
This strategy has delivered 50-100% revenue CAGR for the last 7 years.
Where do you see the most innovation in your space today?
There has been significant innovation in the iPad keyboard space in the last 18 months. Until Q1 2020, iPad was a touch-only device, meaning that it did not support a traditional mouse or trackpad (which we have all become accustomed to on laptops or PCs).
In January 2021 we were the first company to launch a trackpad-enabled iPad keyboard. Now iPadOS supports full trackpad / mouse functionality and competitors have launched their own products. This trackpad support revolutionized the way the iPad is used and turned it into a genuine laptop replacement.
The trackpads in our MAX+ line-up utilize our next generation multi-touch technology which allows enhanced functionality and ease of use. This is a massive step forward for our products and what we can do for our customers.
Going into the second half of the year, where is Brydge investing its time (and money)?
We have an extremely exciting 2H ahead of us, which includes the launch our next generation MAX+ iPad keyboard line-up and some other exciting products.
Q3 will be a record quarter from a revenue perspective and we’re looking to carry that momentum in Q4, which is typically our largest quarter.
Additionally we have several other exciting product launches across both the tablet keyboard and docking station categories which will add further depth to our line-ups in those categories and fuel further growth in Q4 and 2022, as well as significant expansion across all channels and several new markets.
While growing your business, what has unexpectedly been the hardest part? And easiest?
Great question. In our industry we’re competing with global companies like Apple, Microsoft and Logitech, and you have to have a relentless mindset to succeed. It’s not only about having a terrific team and best-in-class products, but the tenacity to push ahead despite roadblocks. In short, never give up.
The easiest part. The passion to push ahead is always there.
What are you most excited about in the next few months? Can you share any company goals you want achieved?
I am most excited about our MAX+ line-up getting into the hands of customers around the world. The initial sales data and customer feedback is overwhelmingly positive and we can’t wait to see this continue.
In addition to this, our Microsoft Designed For Surface partnership is growing rapidly and there are some exciting new products coming out in the coming months.
What advice would you share to growth companies on how they finance their business?
There are a multitude of financing options out there. It’s important to first focus on what funding problem you’re trying to solve for and really address them. I have found the best finance option aligns with your growth plans at that point in time – which for us have changed from funding inventory to supporting significant brand marketing and new hires. We have raised both equity and debt and each have an important part to plan in the funding matrix.