Young and restless as his past years as entrepreneur prove it, Lukas Eder is a visionary when it comes to business and a guru when playing with Java, SQL and jOOQ. He doubts that there are any other places in the world as innovative as Silicon Valley, and we loved his honesty on the subject. Seems like not only Cluj is “Europe’s Silicon Valley”; Switzerland has its valley too.
Don’t be afraid of failures and innovate, this is what Lukas advises us. And we will surely do so, as success is not build on success.
A few words from Lukas Eder, ladies and gents!
It is your first time in Cluj, “Europe’s Silicon Valley”, as the international press called it. What are your expectations regarding the Java specialists you’ll address to?
Lukas Eder: Interesting. Our local press calls Zurich “Europe’s Silicon Valley”. But I doubt it. Few areas in the world are as innovative as the real Silicon Valley.
I must admit, I wasn’t aware of Cluj as an IT hub before the upcoming events I’m attending, so I have no expectations at all, but after hearing about the Silicon Valley part, I’m sure I’ll be very positively surprised. I’m looking forward to this event very much.
The 2014 A.T. Kearney index ranked Romania 5th among the most attractive outsourcing destinations in Europe. In your opinion, what steps the local companies should take in order to migrate through a product development business model?
L. E.: There are various IT businesses: big corporations, ISVs (like ourselves), services providers, and outsourcing providers (local and remote). Outsourcing providers have a unique advantage as they can look into a variety of different businesses, the businesses of their ISV and services provider customers. The big challenge is to find an appropriate way to internalize this acquired knowledge and assess market needs for a new product. I imagine it’s rather hard to internalize experience made by individuals in remote projects executed for foreign end users.
As a founder of a successful startup, what would you recommend young IT specialists to do for creating their own innovative startups?
L. E.: Technically, we wouldn’t consider ourselves a startup. We’re self-funded with no intent of fast growth. But you don’t need to focus on growth to be innovative or to run a successful business. The main messages I have are:
- Doing business in software is extremely easy. There are no material supply chains, no logistics challenges, little regulations. All you need is an idea, a little bit of money, and probably an Internet connection.
- Because it’s extremely easy, don’t be afraid to run the risk and try your business idea. You can only fail – and that’s OK. But running your own business is something extremely inspiring. You don’t learn these things when you’re employed.
- If you don’t want to grow fast (with VC), you can easily do some contracting work that supports your main business.
- Talk to other entrepreneurs. They’re everywhere. Everyone has some little ideas about how to make money. Go to conferences (like www.microconfeurope.com), local meetups. Read books and blogs. There is tons of gold lying around in the Internet.