Citrix has acquired three-year-old collaborative-work platform provider Podio. Podio’s cloud-based system allows users to apply social media concepts to organizing work instead of being forced to use traditional, highly structured and static project management tools. Citrix is expected to integrate the newly acquired platform into its GoTo cloud services portfolio.

Why Podio?

Podio was formed in 2009 and has only been out of beta about a year, but already boasts tens of thousands of users in 170 countries, as well as integration with Box. Podio is more of a platform than an application. It provides a base of social business features such as workspaces, activity streams, comments, likes and statuses, which users can configure and customize to fit how they would like to work.

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The platform also includes a drag-and-drop visual app composer that allows non-technical users to add new functionality. Podio’s offering is well aligned with Citrix’s portfolio of products such as GoToMeeting, GoToMyPC and Sharefile that allow users to work in new ways. 

Podio structures work without adding all the ceremony like Gnatt charts and heat maps that makes users resist suggestions at project management. Citrix could differentiate itself in the crowded web meeting and remote access market by providing an end-to-end solution for distributed teams. However, the product will likely appeal more to small and medium businesses or departments within large businesses instead of enterprises looking for a comprehensive work management solution. It will be interesting to see whether Citrix makes any moves to broaden the appeal of the platform.

Podio officials have indicated that there will be no changes in the platform due to the Citrix acquisition, except for a big infusion of cash. Although customers are likely breathing a sigh of relief, Citrix is a large company and Podio is tiny and new, which likely means in the long run there will be a change or two.

Getting More Information

Citrix will discuss more details about its plans for Podio and the company’s larger collaboration strategy new month at its Citrix Synergy conference being held in San Francisco May 9-11.