From ideation to release, TEEPS serves as an innovation team for companies taking new mobile apps to market.
TEEPS was founder Terrence Donnelly’s childhood nickname and his business partner, Joshua Imel, wanted to use it. While Terrence was reluctant—he found the idea vaguely narcissistic—he eventually caved. Later, clients would say they’d reached out specifically because of all the companies they’d come across, TEEPS was the one they remembered. The company’s logo is also unforgettable: a space-suited monkey rocketing through space.
“It hit on what we consider ourselves: explorers in app development,” Terrence says. “We view ourselves as pioneers blazing a trail and the monkey really represented that, but there’s also the term Code Monkey. Code is our craft, and our mission statement was to help our customers reach further.”
One of TEEPS’ early products was an UBER-like app that connected owners of trucks and vans with people who needed such a vehicle at that very moment. (Think large purchases at IKEA or Best Buy that don’t fit in normal-sized vehicles.) It was the sort of app that makes you ask, “Why didn’t I think of that?”
Today, TEEPS is building apps that inspire a different sort of response: “How did anyone ever think of that?”
Joshua Imel Partner - TEEPS
Terrence Donnelly Partner - TEEPS
The company is, for example, innovating and revamping government transportation through the interplay of different technologies. Though not yet launched, the app TEEPS has designed for this purpose is unlike anything currently on the market. The company has also helped healthcare companies innovate with products that allow patients to visit with doctors.
But innovation starts with the TEEPS team itself, explains Terrence: “Because of our internal work innovating our processes and our craft, we were able to get things to market 60-to-80% faster than our clients were able to, even with their own larger teams.” And in anticipation of intense scaling, TEEPS brought on Key Talent Solutions to offer a perspective in organizational psychology—a big-picture move that helped both the TEEPS team and their clients stay at the top of their game.
In November 2018, TEEPS was acquired by two different entities: one bought the company itself, while the other hired the TEEPS team wholesale—a perfect indication of TEEPS’s all-around innovation. Terrence and Joshua are onto other projects but still serve on the TEEPS board, which itself reflects the collaborative spirit that first attracted them to Orlando.
“Orlando is unique in the sense that every other company and entrepreneur you meet in the area is ready and willing to help elevate you along with them. The tech ecosystem is all based on inclusion and collaboration,” Terrence explains. TEEPS has even partnered with competing agencies for certain projects. “It makes sense for both of us to win, and not to have things be adversarial. Orlando is really big on that.”
Blackstone LaunchPad UCF, in addition to other support TEEPS received through the university—Joshua is an alumnus—also played a huge role in TEEPS’s success. And even though TEEPS was never part of the Orlando co-working scene, the company has found support and enthusiasm from that quarter, too. “Orlando is full of smart people who want you to succeed. It’s pretty awesome.”
Though the company is no longer theirs, the partners see TEEPS’ momentum as part of what they set out to build: a craft with a distant trajectory and a mission to keep pushing the boundaries.