By Josh Wolanin
Inventory management software systems have been around for decades, enabling companies of all sizes to control inventory and maintain detailed reporting on their products.
Many of these systems can be overly complex, requiring deep integration and significant financial investment. And only one of them works with Square, the leading mobile payment solution that’s already processing over $10b annually.
Minnesota entrepreneur Mark Lazarchic initially conceived Otterology in response to his own personal needs as a business owner, but soon realized that every other Square merchant was in his same shoes, necessitating a back-end reporting and management tool as simple as Square itself.
“I have no tech background whatsoever,” explains Lazarchic. “Surprisingly, Square doesn’t offer a system of their own, so I asked my team if they wanted to to be part the first ones to do it. Six months later, we’re a new startup company.”
Otterology works by taking the CSV report Square generates after sales and turns that into usable data. After initial implementation of inventory, Otterology monitors what was sold, when and where it was sold, the sell through rate, amongst many other real-time metrics.
“We want to become the standard for small to mid-size business on Square,” Lazarchic says. “Instead of spending thousands of dollars for a legacy system, we offer a product that is relevant to their mobile world and financially reasonable for their situation.”
The six person team is completely bootstrapped and is currently in beta phase with 35 users as part of a 6-month freemium/feedback cycle. Lazarchic says he’s met with Square and they are “in the know” about his technology and vision.
“By the end of the year we would like to see the reports download into Quickbooks, Peachtree Accounting or whatever service businesses use,” Lazarchic says. “…and we’ll pursue integration with other leading mobile payment platform as well.”
“We’re now at the point where people call me now instead of me calling them.”