Today I was a speaker at “rise and shine” for IT startups, where about 30 people interested in starting up IT business had gathered to share experiences and thoughts. I shared my entrepreneurial journey from the starting point of Flodström Racing in 2008 (financing my kart racing for two years), continuing with my founding of a Lithuanian IT startup in 2011, and the lessons taken from there as input into Beetroot. It was the first time I presented the Beetroot model for a larger group, and although there are some improvements to be made presentation wise, it was great to spread information of about what we are doing and receive a lot of interesting questions from the audience. Big thanks to Andrius Kaseta who was both organizer, speaker and the one who invited me to speak.
This week has passed by really quickly, but it has been packed with lots of progress on the recruitment side and plenty of interesting experiences, I will share just a few. On Tuesday evening we took the night-train from Kiev to Kharkov. It’s quite a perfect distance since it takes around 9 hours and as long as you get some good roommates in the coupé, you can get a good night’s sleep and arrive in Kharkov in a perfect time to start a workday. It also helps that we have our favorite little hostel to visit were you can rent a bed in a big room for just a couple of dollars, and normally stay there alone, with your own key and everything.
We had planned to stay Wednesday and Thursday to follow up on some of our connections that we found on our little scouting tour in April, as well as meeting some new ones. On Wednesday it came to our knowledge that the Swedish IT company Sigma was arranging a karting competition for IT companies on Saturday, and since karting is sort of what I focused my life on from 2002-2009 this chance of some publicity couldn’t be missed. Beetroot Resources were out for some aggressive recruitment on Thursday and Friday and managed to form a team of 4 IT specialists and one taxi driver for the competition day. It was an action packed day of racing between 40 drivers from 8 companies. Beetroot Resources performed well all day long and entered the Kharkov IT scene in style taking the victory in front of the reigning champions, Sigma Ukraine, Champagne!!
We had left much of the practical issues to solve upon arrival, assuming that opportunities would be much more likely to show up when physically in Kiev. So we arrived, informed all of our acquaintances about our arrival and need of a place to live and work, and waited for roughly 22 hours before receiving a positive answer of the type “I have some free space in my office you might rent for a while, come have a look”. The offer came from an architect who Gustav got to know briefly during his 1 month stay in Odessa last summer. For a lean start up, the solution offered was rather optimal, with a space just big enough for two persons to both live and work, and with absolutely minimized distance from work to bed, approximated to 20 centimeters – no waste!