A single multinational client will help double sales for the maker of school-scheduling software in New Albany’s business incubator,Inc@8000.
Capture Education Inc. signed a distribution deal on June 19 with the School Systems group of Pearson Education Inc. to offer Capture’s scheduling software as a module in Pearson’s larger electronic system school districts use to manage student information including attendance, behavior and grades.
That instantly exposes the product, ScheduleSmart to Pearson’s customer base encompassing 10 million students, said Mike Neubig, president and founder of Capture Education. ScheduleSmart now is being used by 13 school districts with 130,000 students.
Pearson is an international educational publishing and technology company.
Meanwhile, Neubig can continue marketing his product independently with the Pearson seal of approval. Revenue is projected at $1.2 million this year, he said, which is more than double the $550,000 in 2011.
A former school guidance counselor in Westerville, Neubig slogged through any number of student schedules before arriving at a classic entrepreneurial a-ha moment.
“I thought there’s got to be a better way than what I call the dartboard method,” he said.
He founded the company as a consulting firm in 2006 and debuted the software product in 2010.
ScheduleSmart takes in data on individual student performance and recommends a plan for courses to take leading to graduation. It then gathers up those profiles into a recommended master class schedule for the school year, cutting time and error out of the process.
“It’s monitoring data on them and even trying to match with teachers who perform best in that (curricular) pathway,” Neubig said.
With one software developer on staff, he’ll need to hire another to write code to integrate with the system from Pearson Education, a division of UK-based publisher Pearson plc (NYSE: PSO).
In a recent interview with Columbus Business First, Ohio TechAngel Funds founder John Huston said what sets successful startups apart from others is the ability to land strategic marquee customers.
Carrie Ghose covers health care and medicine, higher education, technology and business services for Business First.