Santa Cruz Tech Beat


Q&A: Lightspeed POS closing Santa Cruz office

By Sara Isenberg
Founder, Publisher, Editor-in-Chief, Santa Cruz Tech Beat

April 28, 2016 — Santa Cruz, CA

In July 2013, a Santa Cruz startup, MerchantOS, was acquired by Lightspeed. As reported in TechCrunch (7/24/13):

LightSpeed, an Accel-backed company offering tools for physical retailers to both manage their business and engage their customers, is aiming at a new audience today. It’s launching LightSpeed Cloud, a new product powered by LightSpeed-acquired point-of-sales software maker MerchantOS.

Lightspeed POS, headquartered in Montreal, Canada, is now closing their Santa Cruz office, located on Pacific Avenue.

I had the opportunity to get the scoop directly from local Lightspeed development manager, Stephen Bartlett.

SCTB: What does/did Lightspeed do in Santa Cruz?

SB: Lightspeed has four main products in the area of: retail store management, both (1) web-based and (2) Mac OSX native app, (3) eCom (web storefronts for retailers), and (4) Hospitality (restaurant/bar management).  Each of these product lines support multiple stores and registers, track inventory, perform employee management, and provide reporting of all data.  The SC office was a development team focused on the “Retail” product line (item 1).

SCTB: Is there a reason why the company is closing the Santa Cruz office?

SB: Development costs were unsustainable.  It’s much more cost-effective to hire people in Montreal.

SCTB: How many people work/worked in the Santa Cruz office?

SB: At its peak, 15. More recently, 9.

SCTB: Are they all looking for new work? What are their skill sets?

SB: Some are, yes. A quick summary would be: full-stack LAMP developers (both PHP and Python) proficient with: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, Python, MySQL. We followed industry best practices: agile, code reviews, automated unit, functional, and UI tests integrated with the ticketing and source code control systems, etc. Some folks are more front-end, some are more back-end.

SCTB: Is there anything else you’d like to share w/ Santa Cruz Tech Beat readers?

SB: It’s been great working in Santa Cruz. I hope that more companies locate here so we have a vibrant tech community, and we won’t have to commute over the hill.

[Editor’s note: If local hiring managers would like to reach out to the Lightspeed POS folks who are looking for work, contact Stephen Bartlett.]


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