The founder of online discount coupon site Tjoos.com has launched a new email venture that he claims will take the sector in an innovative new direction.
Bart Jellema has launched Project Inbox Zero with an initial team of two developers and a designer, and says that he may take on a further co-founder in the coming weeks.
Jellema, who has become one of the leading figures among Australian tech start-ups, says the new email system will work by filtering emails, taking the stress out of dealing with regular missives.
“Email has been neglected for a long time,” he says. “Gmail took over and it has been semi-abandoned, no one is doing anything in this space. We think this thing could really grow, here and in other countries. World domination is the goal.”
“The majority of emails are notifications that are auto-generated. This system will filter them out and display the emails in a different way – like a one liner in Facebook that says someone has tagged a photo of you.”
“This will be separated from your inbox, as it has nothing to do with email. The same will be done with news emails you get.”
Other features of the system include a notification if someone hasn’t replied to your email within three days and the ability to put emails into a ‘to do’ section rather than leave them unread.
Project Inbox Zero has entered its beta phase, with Jellema predicting that it will be available to people within “a couple of months”.
The venture has so far received no funding, with each of the initial team donating their time to the project. Jellema says that future equity may be sought for the venture, but that he hadn’t decided what model the business will take.
Jellema previously founded Tjoos in 2007 with Kim Chen. The business was initially a price comparison site before switching to become an online coupon portal. He sold the business to Internet Brands last year.
Since then, Jellema has been involved with the Startmate program as a mentor. He denies that Project Inbox Zero is a conflict of interest with two of the winners of Startmate, which both focus on email-based solutions.