In 2007, David Meyer, Opencell’s current CEO, was managing a business specialized in providing enablement services for mobile operators. Confronted with the complexity and high costs of available billing solutions, he commissioned Sébastien Michéa, a Mathematics PhD who had started a software development company based in Dijon, to develop several ad hoc billing modules. Over the course of the next eight years, Sébastien stitched this initial work, and additional developments requested by David and other clients, into an integrated, configurable open source software program that could be used to model and bill almost any complex telco-type offer.
In late 2014, David, Sébastien and Ethan Beardsley, who’d worked with David in business consulting, decided to create a software company focused exclusively on the open source billing project. They saw that subscription and usage-based business models were « eating the world » and that available billing options were still unattractive. And they were convinced that businesses were increasingly interested in open source business software solutions provided they could get competent enterprise support and maintenance.
After closing a first deal with Orange’s cloud business in a matter of weeks, the team knew they had product/market fit. And, when Xavier Niel, the French telecom maverick, committed to invest in the not-yet created company, they pulled the trigger, leaving their day jobs, to create Opencell in March 2015.