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Slack unveils an app store and $80m development fund

The business communication tool Slack is trying to end the year on a high note, and looking at what the company announced yesterday, it seems to be on the right track.

The team-communication app, which now has two million daily users and 570,000 paying customers has announced three things – an app store which will offer other productivity tools (like Trello, for example) to integrate with Slack, an $80 million fund to help developers create more apps for the store, and a new framework called Botkit which should simplify the process of creating apps.

The Slack App Directory, available on this link, currently offers 160 apps sorted into different lists: by category, popularity, staff favourites.

“Installation is easy—you’ll be using these new apps inside your Slack team after just a few clicks,” the company said in a blog post announcing the novelties.

The fund, aimed at motivating developers to take part, is backed by Slack and six of its investors: Accel, Andreessen-Horowitz, Index Ventures, KPCB, Spark, and Social+Capital.

“If you’re a developer or small company deciding whether to make a bet on the Slack platform, the Slack Fund is a new source of support to help you get started building apps,” Slack says.

The Slack Fund will fund both “Slack-first” apps as well as B2B and enterprise tools that make Slack integrations a core part of their offering.

Botkit, which was developed by Howdy, “greatly simplifies the creation of apps (especially bots) with a flexible codebase that handles things like authenticating apps to a team and the sending, receiving, and processing of messages with our API.”

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a freelance journalist with more than 15 years of experience in writing various types of content, from blogs, whitepapers, and reviews to ebooks, and many more, across sites including Al Jazeera Balkans, TechRadar Pro, IT Pro Portal, and CryptoNews.