The all-new activeCollab is out – improved project management with SaaS coming along

BY Vukašin Stojkov ON June 7

The third version of activeCollaba, one of the most successful global web products from Serbia has been released publicly two weeks ago. The new version of this web app is here after years of effort by the makers, A51 of Novi Sad.

ActiveCollab started it’s life as a free open source app for project management, which became a very successful commercial product in 2007. Among more than 10.000 business which use activeCollab are the likes of Disney, Nokia, BBC, Adobe, Cisco, Stanford and many others.

The new version presents a significant jump ahead in comparison to the previous one. The whole user interface has been redesigned, a mobile version is available and many new features have been implemented.

AC3 will give clients (including potential ones) the option to send RFPs to the users of the platform, who will be able to bill them from within the app, to integrate it with their email client and make use of many other features.

The business model of activeCollab remains (for now) one-time selling of licences -499$ for the Corporate licence with the full set of features and 249$ for the Small biz variant with a reduced feature set. In both cases the users must install and host the software by themselves.

In an interview with Ilija Studen, a co-founder of A51, we’ve foud out among other things that by the end of the year a SaaS option will be offered. See the whole interview below.

What’s the biggest improvement that AC3 brings over the previous edition?

It’s difficult to pick one particular feature since we worked on improving every section. There is literally no part of the system that hasn’t been refreshed and upgraded.

Still, we think that people will like most the improvements to the interface, outline and timeline tools, as well as rounding up of many section in terms of functionality (tasks, invoicing, home screen etc.)

What were the reactions of users that had the opportunity to test AC3?

ActiveCollab 3 is in beta since the New Year, so a lot of people have already had the opportunity to meet with the new version.

I honestly do not recall a comment in which a user expresses opinion that the new version is worse than the previous one or that he will continue using the old one. Almost all the comments we recieved by now are positive, with a number of suggestions, naturally.

The building and launch of this new version has ran quite a bit longer than planned. What was the reason for it, are there any lessons you came up with, that you would share with us?

The previous two years have been a period of investing: in the product, the team, the way we work, so I do not regret a moment of it.

As for the mistakes we made, the most important one was letting things we work on get out of hand. They pulled one another, to come out as a mammoth project without an end in line.

Yet, now that we have met this “ending”, I believe we have a well rounded product that makes it possible for us to build further.

When will you offer a SaaS option for activeCollab ?

The cogs are turning already and for months now we are using activeCollab on the platform we intend to offer clients by the end of the year.

As with every other product a lot of work remains to be done, so we don’t have a precisely defined deadline for the launch of this service, but the work is well under way.

Before that we need to help our users to upgrade to activeCollab 3, that’s the priority.

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