Why You Need API Services From Mashery!

May 5, 2011

OpenView Venture Partners just led an investment in Mashery that was just announced (nice TechCrunch write-up here).

I have been waiting for Mashery to come along for years because it offers a fundamental piece of the Internet architecture that all companies should be using!

I have been looking at API services companies from an investment perspective for 10 years (no joke, this is a long time!) and have been waiting for the right company to invest in and work with. It was pretty obvious from the first conversation that Mashery is the right company at the right time and I am truly excited to be able to work with the management team and board.

But, my blog focuses on an audience of emerging growth technology company managers, so what does this have to do with you?

Simply put, you should be using Mashery. Not because we invested in it, but rather because there is a HUGE benefit to you!

My beliefs with respect to APIs are pretty simple:

1. Every company needs a robust API because your API is the most important User Interface you have (just like every company needed a website 15 years ago)

2. Your User Interface should use your API 100% (it will make it easier to make sure that you create a robust API which will allow your API users to get everything available to your UI users!)

3. Every API needs API services (anyone that has built an API gets this)

4. Renting API services is easier and cheaper than building your own (this wasn’t always true, but the API services available to rent have become really sophisticated and it makes no sense to build it yourself given the price of renting from someone else and the opportunity that you have to put your limited development resources on the portions of your backlog that will create true competitive advantage)

5. APIs create new business opportunities for your company (think of how much easier your partner/customer/ecosystem integrations would be if they all went through your API).

6. The best full service API services company will help you not only with your technology needs, but also with your business needs. (Mashery, for example, has a developer network of over 100,000 developers and helps its customers to access and work with them to build unique products and services using APIs).

This is a pretty simple set of beliefs, although my sense is that the market for API services is still somewhat early in the adoption curve so these points may not ring true to you if you are a technology follower rather than a leader. I can say, however, that we spoke to many, many really amazing people during our diligence process for Mashery and was amazed at how shared these beliefs are among the people that recognize the business benefits of APIs.

You really should consider the list above and determine how important your API is to your business.

My belief is that your API is the most important piece of a strategy to build out your ecosystem (one of my 7 ways that your competitors are going to eat you for lunch if you don’t eat them first) and that building out your ecosystem should at least be considered as one of your key strategies (I am hard pressed to name a successful technology company over the last 10 years that doesn’t have an ecosystem).

If your API is important, then consider an API services company and take a look at Mashery!

Founder & Partner

As the founder of OpenView, Scott focuses on distinctive business models and products that uniquely address a meaningful market pain point. This includes a broad interest in application and infrastructure companies, and businesses that are addressing the next generation of technology, including SaaS, cloud computing, mobile platforms, storage, networking, IT tools, and development tools.