Atlanta’s Bellwood Quarry has been through many iterations throughout its history. First as a granite excavation site and then as a backdrop for TV hits like The Walking Dead and Stranger Things, it will soon be part of the city’s largest public park.
Just as the quarry has shifted with the history of Atlanta, Bellwood Labs has taken shape as one local SaaS startup looked for ways to pivot over the course of the pandemic.
Veteran Atlanta entrepreneur Rob Kischuk started Bellwood Labs out of his current company Converge, a marketing reporting startup based in Midtown.
Converge previously caught the attention of Mark Cuban, who was an early investor in the company. But like many teams, 2020 was about finding ways to pivot, adjust, and find new areas of growth. “I think when you raise money, there’s a stigma about you should be focused on that company and focus on it all the time. The Silicon Valley version of that is — if [the startup] runs into the ground, you’re supposed to kill it and get rid of all your investors. And you’re supposed to go start a new company from scratch without funding,” Kischuk told Hypepotamus.
“I’ve been in situations where we either ran out of money, or where the team disappeared from an acquisition. Over the past year, I really learned to get comfortable being public with this idea of ‘Hey, we have a SaaS startup and we do services.’ And yes, there is divided attention in that. But we’re going to work very hard to build both things well.”
The result was Bellwood Labs, an on-demand development team designed to help clients of all sizes build a new digital product, scale an existing idea, or maintain a project. Kischuk said that could look like helping a team refine user stories, working through the design process, all the way to delivering on a final project.
Kischuk notes that Bellwood Labs is a unique addition to the work going on at Converge. It has already brought in enterprise clients like Warner Media and local startups like OTHRSource and Aveanna Healthcare.
“We just have deep empathy for where a company is coming from when they’re wanting that product to exist in the world. And we want it to exist too, there’s a great pleasure in seeing products come out and grow and scale.”
The team is currently six people strong with an additional ten contractors on the team. They’ve not only launched during the pandemic, but they’ve also built a 7-figure business while growing a strong client base.
And in an exciting sign for the Atlanta software development space overall, Kischuk told Hypepotamus that the team is looking to double over the course of 2021.