Behind Formaloo’s €2M investment round

Formaloo, an emerging no-code app-building platform for teams, has defied all odds with remarkable growth, boasting over 25,000 monthly active users, including Meta, Bolt, McDonald’s, and many more.


Formaloo, an emerging no-code app-building platform for teams, has defied all odds with remarkable growth, boasting over 25,000 monthly active users, including Meta, Bolt, McDonald’s, and many more.

Last month, Formaloo announced the successful completion of a €2 million seed round. This propels Formaloo into a new era of rapid expansion, aiming to democratize software development.

Formaloo’s journey is nothing short of extraordinary. Hailing from Iran, a land not typically associated with thriving global startups, the company has overcome numerous challenges to become a rocket ship in the no-code industry. In under two years, Formaloo has amassed a staggering user base of over 25,000 monthly active businesses, counting prestigious clients such as Meta, Bolt, and MacDonald’s.

The company’s resilience and determination were tested right from the start. In a twist of fate, the Iranian government imposed a complete internet shutdown for ten days just as the four co-founders were preparing to launch Formaloo. No internet, no communication, no business. However, undeterred by this setback, the founders swiftly made a bold decision to relocate and pursue their vision elsewhere.

The founders packed their bags, leaving behind everything they had built, and embarked on a new chapter in Tallinn, Estonia. Choosing Estonia for its thriving startup ecosystem, the co-founders recognized the nation’s potential to foster their venture’s growth. They couldn’t continue a tech company in a country that could shut down the entire internet.

Despite the challenges of immigration and starting from scratch, the welcoming startup ecosystem in Estonia played a vital role in supporting Formaloo’s journey. Estonia’s vibrant community of local and global founders, always ready to lend a helping hand, made the process more manageable. Farokh Shahabi, Co-founder and CEO of Formaloo, expressed his gratitude for the remote connections that have become more prevalent since the Covid era, enabling founders to build businesses and raise funds across borders.

Farokh, a serial entrepreneur, discovered his passion for coding at a young age. Starting his first venture in the UK at the age of 17, his initial goal was simply to learn how to code. However, to his surprise, his first startup gained traction and was ultimately acquired, making him one of Iran’s youngest entrepreneurs to achieve a successful exit.

Alongside Farokh, the three other co-founders, Noosh, Hasan, and Amir, have worked with each other for over nine years in the field of data analytics. Having enjoyedtwo2 successful exits and M&A experiences in their previous ventures together, the quartet’s reunion for the launch of Formaloo showcases their unwavering commitment to simplifying data-driven operations.

What is Formaloo?

Formaloo offers no-code application-building software to teams who can collect and organize their company’s data and build applications. Users can turn their data into custom business apps like HR portals, forms, surveys, and customer engagement tools like CRMs, client portals, and more.

At its core, Formaloo is actually a database management system that anyone can easily add interfaces to it by dragging and dropping tools like building blocks. Their motto is: Build apps as easy as playing with Legos!

With integrations to many popular platforms, like Slack, Google, and Microsoft, the all-in-one Formaloo platform lets anyone create powerful databases and connect functions such as tables, reports, and widgets to build their application in minutes. Formaloo has its own data storage options and provides advanced access management to give its customers total control over their data security.

How the idea of Formaloo was born?

The idea of Formaloo was born from their previous venture. Back then, they were developing data-driven business apps for enterprises all over the world, but they saw a major problem with all of their customers.

Every day, their customers kept asking for new modules, modifications, and customizations. It was very expensive and time-consuming to fulfill these asks.

This sparked a set of questions — Could we optimize and simplify this process for our customers without breaking the bank? Even when considering every business is unique and requires custom solutions?

This led to the idea of turning every business user into a software developer. They call it Citizen developers now, who can create software without any coding or even having to learn a new skill.

As such, they created a small version of Formaloo and gave it to their customers with instructions — “From now you don’t have to bug us anymore. You can now customize your own solution without any coding or help from any developer or data scientist.

The customers loved it so much that they started asking for more features and offered to become paid users. And that’s how the early adopters helped to give birth to the early version of Formaloo.

Fast forward two years, and now Formaloo has more than 25,000 monthly active businesses from 30+ countries, with the US being their biggest market with about 70% of their market share.

Formaloo raises €2M seed round to democratize software development

Last month, Formaloo closed a seed round of 2 million euros, led by Change Ventures (which marks their first-ever investment in founders who’re originally not from the Baltics). The investor lineup includes Startup Wise Guys, Mana Ventures, and Hyde Park Venture Partners — a renowned early-stage VC from the US.

As startups across the globe are hitting hard by layoffs or raising at less than favorable terms, Formaloo showed how being cashflow positive with product-led growth can save startups in the current recession.

Since the founders didn’t have any money, their first mission when they started Formaloo was to become cashflow positive and prove they could grow without any external capital.

Formaloo had a complete product-led growth and has spent close to $0 on advertisement so far. Formaloo calls its users “ambassadors” and tries to engage them through its “Build in public” mentality, which created a great community of no-code developers around their platform.

Formaloo targets the $46B office apps market, including SMBs and SMEs with less than 500 employees globally. With more than 650,000 databases and business apps already created on Formaloo, the platform is on track to reach 100K+ businesses in 12 months.

Formaloo’s product-led growth has facilitated the development of a 2,000-head community of citizen developers that share templates and tutorials. In five years, Formaloo aims to have 10 million clients and become the household name for a no-code ecosystem that can turn anyone into a developer.

Here’s what Farokh Shahabi, CEO of Formaloo, had to say about their plans with this round of investment:

We have one goal in mind. We want to democratize software development. Everyone can be a developer with Formaloo!

With this investment, Formaloo will become a workspace hub, which enables business users to access their tools in one single platform and create any kind of applications they want in a matter of minutes, not months.

Formaloo aims to be more than just yet another no-code platform. Our goal is to establish a comprehensive no-code ecosystem, where every no-code developer can bring their ideas to life using a unified set of tools. Not just Formaloo, but all of their favorite tools, together.

Part of interview with Formaloo co-founder, Farokh Shahabi with Delfi
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Behind Formaloo’s €2M investment round