Fintech giant Stripe has acquired Okay, a startup that developed a low-code analytics software to help engineering leaders better understand how their teams are performing, the companies told TechCrunch exclusively.
Founded in 2019, Okay participated in Y Combinator’s Winter 2020 cohort before going on to raise a total of $6.6 million in capital from the likes of Sequoia and Kleiner Perkins. Angel investors include executives from Plaid, Brex and Instacart, along with Stripe CEO Patrick Collison.
Financial terms of the deal, which marks Stripe’s first acquisition since it bought card reader provider BBPOS in January of 2022, were not disclosed.
Co-founders Antoine Boulanger (CEO) and Tomas Barreto (CTO) met while working at Box — Boulanger as a senior director of engineering and Barreto as a VP of engineering. Prior to starting Okay, Boulanger was working as a senior engineering manager at Google and Barreto was a vice president of product and engineering at Checkr.
The pair told TechCrunch in 2020 that in the process of building out a suite of in-house tools designed to help managers at Box understand their teams better, they realized the opportunity for a subscription toolset that could help managers across companies. For the most part, Boulanger says that Okay was designed to largely replace tools built in-house as well.
Getting a picture of an engineering team’s productivity involves plugging into Okay’s toolsets and gathering data into a digestible feed. The dashboards can be built on top of developer tools’ data such as GitHub and Jira.
In a nutshell, Okay was aimed at giving companies a way to build engineering effectiveness dashboards on top of developer tools.
“We use metrics and data to make an engineering team more efficient and effective,” Boulanger told TechCrunch in an interview. “It looks very much like [analytics software] Mixpanel or Amplitude but applied to engineering work. The difference is that we are very focused on finding the bottlenecks that are affecting engineers on their day-to day-activities — more on their inputs…rather than outputs, like lines of codes.”
Of course now that it has been acquired by Stripe, Okay will transition out of serving its other customers — which in the past have included Brex, Plaid and Intercom — to exclusively serving Stripe. Okay had seven employees prior to the acquisition. The co-founders declined to share if all seven employees would be joining Stripe.
“Our approach…aligns with Stripe engineering values: by increasing engineering effectiveness, Stripe will be better positioned to attract and retain talented engineers,” Boulanger said.
While Okay would not share any recent revenue metrics, the company told TechCrunch in February of 2022 that it had seen both its revenue and customer base grow around 10 times, including adding on customers such as Sourcegraph and mParticle.
It was while pitching Stripe in 2022 that the small startup “really hit it off with the engineering leaders, and “from there, it evolved into more of an acquisition discussion,” said Boulander.
As a SaaS company, Okay made money by selling subscriptions to its software.
“Stripe was the kind of customer we served,” Boulanger said. “They were usually companies in the pre-IPO phase with hundreds to thousands of engineers where the manager wanted to start tracking what others are doing, and looking for tools to help with decision-making.”
Today, Okay is being folded into Stripe’s engineering department.
Boulanger said that prior to this acquisition, Okay had regular conversations with other potential acquirers but concluded that “Stripe was really special.”
Stripe, which is one of the world’s highest-valued private companies, has had some struggles as the payments space in which it operates only continues to get more competitive and the IPO market has dried up. In the past year alone, companies such as Plaid and Finix have released competing products, for example. And Stripe, which has yet to go public via a long-awaited IPO, earlier this year raised $6.5 billion at a $50 billion valuation after being valued at $95 billion in March of 2021. Stripe’s latest raise took place months after the company laid off about 1,120 workers, or 14% of its workforce, in November of 2022 after saying it had “overhired for the world we’re in.”
Stripe declined to comment on its acquisition of Okay, outside of confirming that it had taken place and this tweet from CTO David Singleton.
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