October 7, 2012
Interview by Alessandro Vercesi (current intern at betahaus)
What is OleaPark and what does it offer?
Oleapark is the first horizontal platform for events and gives the possibility for users to interact with other attendees before, during, and after an event. iPhone and Android users can download the App for free and start using it by simply logging in from their Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn profile. The App has been created to allow customers to network at events as well as having the important information needed to attend it. Customers create a “badge” for each event and have a portfolio in which they can manage them. In this way, they are able to keep up with what is happening at the event and be in touch with the other attendees before, during, and after the event. Therefore, users can plan a meeting with other attendees and keep in touch with them after the event through the ability of creating a contact list. Thanks to the possibility to link with Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, the App shows people going to an event. These are displayed according to three categories; people that you have already met at an event, people that you are connected with in the other social networks, people that you might know or be interested to meet because you share interests or contacts with them. Another benefit of the App is that users can request to arrange a meeting with another attendee of an event through a messaging/chat system within the App. In addition, the “badge” gives information about the location, agenda, hosts, attendees, and a description of the event. Check out this video...
Florent I know you were part of "Le Camping" in Paris, how was the experience and why did you decide to move to Berlin?
Le Camping is an accelerator for startups. The structure could be considered similar to betahaus because it is a coworking space where 12 startups work at the same time in the same place. Many startups face recurrent problems and being in a coworking environment can help people to be more confident and have the possibility to network and learn from the experience of the other startups. After living in Paris and working at Le Camping for 6 months, we - Florent (CEO) and Karl (CTO)- the two co-founders, decided to move to Berlin 3 months ago. This decision we made primarily because Berlin is considered the best place to be for startups. In fact, here startups can find many investors willing to support them and a very creative environment that can help the company to grow. (Check out this video ...)
Why did you decide to become a member of betahaus?
The choice of betahaus came straightforward to Karl and me because of our experience at Le Camping. That experience taught us that we want to work in a coworking environment because of the possibility to exchange opinion with other startups and the possibility of networking. After 3 months at betahaus, we are still enthusiastic of our choice and believe that the coworking environment helped us to grow a lot in this initial and crucial phase of our company.
What kind of problems do you have to face?
As for many startups, the biggest challenge that OleaPark faced is a lack of time. In fact, whenever a startup is built, the most important variable is time, and in particular, how to prioritize all the important decisions that has to be made. In addition, only two people are part of the team, which could be considered a disadvantage in bigger companies; however, this created the opportunity to be very flexible in each decision and work. As a matter of facts, we were able to develop an App for iPhone and Android, develop a web platform that corporates can use to upload their events, and being able to success in all commercial aspects. In fact, if you work in a well-integrated team, you can be even faster and more efficient than a big team.
Which are your future goals?
As most startups, our main goal is raising more funds in order to open an office in Berlin and keep developing oleapark. During one year, we were able to increase our market share from Paris’ events to a more international range. In fact, right now the app has badge for many events in Europe: Berlin, Paris, Milan, London; and the US, especially in San Francisco. Another goal of the company is being able to wider our range and be able to offer as many events as possible.
Thanks alot for the interview!
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