Canva is throwing $74 million at app developers for its design platform

Canva is establishing a US$50 million (A$74) innovation fund to support app developers in creating new experiences for the design platform.

The Canva Developers Innovation Fund was announced at the company’s first developer conference, Expand Canvastoday in San Francisco.

The 10-year-old software giant has also released the Canva Apps SDK (Software Development Kit) for public use, along with the first Canva Connect APIs (REST APIs) to be released later this year.

Canva Apps SDK has been in beta for the past nine months, with over 11,000 developers on the waiting list. The release gives direct access to anyone who wants to build or integrate their apps into Canva.

With the Starter Kit, developers can get their first app up and running in minutes and extend it using Canva’s purpose-built APIs. It offers developers the ability to allow users to retrieve, add content, edit their design, authenticate users, export and publish, and provide data through Canva Apps.

The APIs currently available are:

  • Possess: Upload media to a user’s media library with the Asset API for a fast, efficient experience.
  • Facts: Use the Data API to become a data source and make data importing seamless.
  • Design: The Design API can build new design tools that add content to a design, read and edit what’s already there, or let your users export and publish their designs to complete an end-to-end content management flow.
  • To retrieve: Send HTTP requests to a third-party server with Fetch, a multi-purpose web API for tasks such as integrating with external services and transferring tasks to a server.
  • User: bridge the gap with the user API. Keep your app secure and let users authenticate through your platform.

The design software company also plans to add multiple apps such as Amazon, Bitly, Frontify, HeyGen, Later.com, SwayTribe, and Neiro AI to the platform in the coming months.

It has also introduced a range of AI-powered tools and in the past nine months has generated more than 200 million unique images through AI products such as Text to Image and Magic Edit.

In addition to that rollout, the company plans to support developers with a $50 million Canva Developers Innovation Fund to accelerate the growth and adoption of apps on the platform.

Ecosystem head Anwar Haneef said the fund will provide support in the form of cash grants and expert guidance, and will also focus on empowering developers who are underrepresented in the global marketplace.

“We’re thrilled with the momentum we’ve gained from working with our beta partners to streamline app creation in Canva,” he said.

“By opening up our design engine to a wider community of developers, we are enabling direct distribution of their apps and services to millions of people on Canva. They can benefit from the valuable feedback and creativity of our community, which will benefit from new ways to achieve their goals.”