We help you turn ideas into great products.

We’re a three-person, full-stack product team—perfect for the funded startup building their version 1.0, or existing brands looking to improve.

We’re available for work

In August of 2015, our long-time customer, Marek Lieberberg Konzertagentur—for whom we created the digital products that helped them become the world’s 5th largest event promoter—was acquired by largest, Live Nation.

With that acquisition done, Makalu is again available to take on new challenges—designing and developing digital products that delight and bring success to our customers.

Marek Lieberberg

For the past decade, we’ve been the design and tech team for the world’s fifth largest concert promoter.

Google & Virgin America

We created an online game for Google & Virgin America that Ogilvy called, “The future of marketing.”

Why Makalu?

Our work has been used by millions of people, featured in the App Store, and has helped companies small and big find success.

To create a great product, you need a team with the highest level of skill and ability, able to adapt to the unique circumstances of your organization—and ultimately capable of delivering a product that brings you success. That’s us!

We’re equally comfortable integrating into your existing product team, or working stand-alone.

Google Virgin America Pearson O'Reilly Marek Lieberberg Konzertagentur Rock am Ring

When we talk about Makalu here at Google, we always say that it’s more like working with other Googlers—an internal team—than an external vendor.

Andrew Chang
Andrew Chang
Former Product Marketing Manager at Google

What we do.

From strategy to design and development, we know what it takes to build and launch successful products.

We add the most value by being part of projects right from the start, shaping strategy and clarifying goals. And when it comes to getting the thing built, here’s where we can help:

Product Design

Design is everything—how it looks, how it reads, how it engages, how it works. We love all aspects of product design, and have been practicing them for more than two decades.

Some customers hire us for blue-sky projects, while others hire us to focus on a specific challenge. For example, Google & Virgin America engaged us to design an online game that promoted the values of both brands, and could be played in a bandwidth-constrained environment at 39,000 feet. At the other end of the spectrum, Referral Exchange engaged us to redesign the company’s landing pages, specifically targeting an increase in conversion.

Mobile Applications

We have years of experience building mobile apps, both as our own products, as well as for clients.

Our iOS app, Rego, received critical acclaim when it launched in 2013 and was featured in the App Store in 127 countries. Our RaceSplitter iOS app, integrating with a back-end web service, has been used to time over a million participants in sports events in over 100 countries.

Although we specialize in iOS, we have experience on Android as well. For the Marek Lieberberg Konzertagentur, we engineered single, platform-specific iOS and Android codebases that, through configuration can deploy mobile apps serving each of the three MLK music festivals. To provide a consistent cross-platform user experience, we made extensive use of web-views, relying on platform-native technology where it made sense—for example, venue mapping.

Front-end Development

We’re expert at implementing responsive web-based products in HTML, CSS and JavaScript—integrating with most modern frameworks.

Soon after its public release we began using React for prototyping and to enhance our new upcoming products. Our first product built with React, a personal chess database, is due soon. It uses Meteor for data storage and real-time sync.

Web Applications with Rails

Our first production Rails app for Marek Lieberberg Konzertagentur has been operational since 2006.

We built the early Catalog Choice website on Rails and helped it scale to a million users in its first year.

Our Rails-based CMS for music festivals drives websites and apps receiving hundreds of thousands of requests during peak hours.

All in all, we’ve built and deployed fifty-some Rails apps in the past decade.


Over a million participants in nearly 100 countries have been timed using our race timing app and web service.


Featured on the App Store in 127 countries, our place bookmarking app became a worldwide hit.

Meet the team.

With Makalu you always get the A-team, because that’s the only team we have.

Matt Henderson

After his aerospace software company in Germany was acquired, Matt turned his attention to consumer products. He leads the Makalu team.

@mhenders dafacto.com

Alex Bendiken

Since winning the Slashdot redesign contest in 2006, Alex has gone on to design more successful products by age 30 than many people during their entire careers.

@alexbndk bndk.co

Justin Driscoll

With 15 years of experience, Justin leads the development of all Makalu-created products, both web and iOS.

@jdriscoll themainthread.com

Get in touch.

If you’ve got a project and need some assistance, we’re just a click away.