Hugo Messer

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Hugo's Skills
Business Development
Finance
Management
Marketing
Product Management
Sales
Technical
Background

Startup Experience

Founded 2+ startups

About Hugo

Our mission

We are building Odesk for software teams. Ekipa.co is a software teams collaboration platform where we match projects with the world's best software team. After the match, we support the collaboration between client and remote provider with our Bridge Method. The end game is a self service platform with a strong toolbox to manage the remote collaboration.

Currently, there is no platform identical to what we built. We do see a few startups that focus on a similar team-matching mechanism, but most stay in the freelance-team world. We focus on teams that work in 1 location, employed and managed by a service company.

What we already have

The platform is a spin off from a 10 year old business, Bridge Global IT Staffing (http://www.bridge-staffing.com). We have our own offices in Holland (sales), Sweden (sales), Ukraine (development) and India (development). The platform is financed and developed by this service company till date, but needs to move to a seperate entity.

We have about 30 teams on the platform currently. Q1 2015 we'll have 75-100. There is a lot of functionality built already.

The people engaged as co-founders now are myself (Hugo) and Piotr (nl.linkedin.com/in/piotrchmielewski). We also have a product owner in India, Krishna (in.linkedin.com/in/krishnajothis) + a development team of 2-4 people working on it continually.

The plan

The plan for 2015 is to find a marketing cofounder in Q1. We also plan to have 30-50 client interviews in Q1 to generate feedback + the first projects. In Q2 we start the first online marketing efforts and continue selling directly to clients. In the second half of the year we plan to raise the first round of VC money, which we ideally do in San Fransisco. We believe the most mature outsourcing market is the US, so it's best to make our big launch from SF.

The marketing cofounder mission

You get the business to our platform. You do that mainly through (online) marketing efforts and use sales only where needed. You develop a strong brand, position the platform in the market, communicate the right message. You implement everything needed in terms of SEO, SEM, analytics.

The marketing cofounder background

We're looking for someone with broad experience in online marketing (e.g. inbound marketing, ad campaigns, analytics etc.).. You have ideally been a shareholder/co-founder in a company running a double sided marketplace. You know how to attract customers to the platform and convert them into long term customers. You know what will drive traffic to the site, how to convert traffic into buyers. You understand the (economic) drivers of a platform. You have a methodical approach to developing customers (e.g. based on lean startup principles).


Education

Erasmus University

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.), General Management

2001 - 2001

Certification

Certified Scrum Master (CSM)

Co-working Space

Regus

- Today