Historically, file sharing startups have not done well. While attempting to disrupt the file sharing industry, many companies build out their platforms to include too many other tools. One such platform could have not only the ability to transfer files, but also a collaboration aspect, amongst other things. This is distracting, raises prices, and becomes the ultimate reason why such startups fail. One Dutch file-sharing startup, however, seems to have figured things out. The company WeTransfer has successfully disrupted the technological industry by keeping their product simple. Through WeTransfer, people are allowed to share large files, and nothing else.
WeTransfer quickly grew after being created, as shown by it reaching profitability in 2015. The company now has 80 million users and is preparing a move to the United States. When using WeTransfer, a person does not even have to sign up to send anything that is 2GB and smaller. To send files above 2GB, a user must sign up for a premium service that costs only $12/month. However, the company makes sure not to push any users toward signing up for their premium service. With this service and the extensive advertising on their website, they are able to make a large amount of money.
Currently, WeTransfer is experiencing a demand in the United States from creative people, such as designers. Therefore, the company is planning to open up an office in Los Angeles and take on some already lucrative startups in this country. Of course, it will come with challenges. Startups such as Hightail, formerly YouSendIt, have shifted their focus to appeal more to creative people. WeTransfer will have to shift its marketing to appeal to more Americans. They are, however, hoping the ease involved in their marketing at home will carry over.
It will be interesting to see how WeTransfer fits into the Los Angeles startup community, but their move to the United States should not overshadow the progress they have already made. This is a company that does not actively push a paid product onto its customers, and created its platform without the bells and whistles that other platforms may use to attempt to stay current. Rather, WeTransfer is focused on transferring files. They began their platform, found this one thing that they were really good at, and stuck with it.
A focus on what works above constant expansion should be a trend followed by more startup companies.