MVP Academy Induction: Week 1 in Review


The MVP Academy Class of 2015 joined us into the startup world at TechHub Bucharest for the induction week. The last couple of days have been intense for both our second batch, and ourselves, and we’ve been working together to get stuff done. As the very tagline of the program tells it, it’s no bullshit here, but the real thing and lots of hard work, so we’ve started full speed with the first workshops, case studies, panels and coaching sessions.

We’ve promised we’ll keep you posted with the latest updates and lessons learnt during the pre-accelerator, so let’s cut the story short and get to the point. Here’s what happened during the first week of MVP Academy. (see more)

The most important indicator that should guide product development

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With so much data widely available today, it often gets tricky to choose the right indicators to monitor product development. But there’s a single, most important KPI, that drives your product’s growth, and it was explained at length by Mat Clayton, Co-Founder and CTO of Mixcloud, last November during How to Web Conference 2014 – Product Track.

Mat is the CTO and Co-Founder of Mixcloud, one of the fastest growing European startups, a music service with more than 10 million users worldwide created and developed by hackers. He loves building web apps and likes to do it quickly and efficiently, he knows Django inside out and he’s also got lots of expertise with building social media apps.

So how can you use data to guide product development? And what data should you consider for making a proper analysis? (see more)

Building a startup? Do it right! 10 Key Insights from Bobby Voicu, Co-Founder of Mavenhut


One of the most successful and fastest growing startups in the region, MavenHut builds social games with a classical flavor, their most well-known title being Solitaire Arena, a multiplayer solitaire game with more than 10 million users. Bobby Voicu, one of its 3 Co-Founders, joined us yesterday at TechHub Bucharest to share best practices with our MVP Academy Class of 2015.

“In the beginning, all early stage tech startups have the same type of problems and face similar concerns”, as Bobby pointed out in the beginning of the discussion. That’s why it’s important to listen and learn from the experience of those that did it right: MavenHut is definitely a case study worth looking at in this respect and we’d like to thank Bobby for taking the time to share valuable insights with us. (see more)

How APIs are reshaping software

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The internet as a universal communication network has brought a new paradigm shift in software development. Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) have become very powerful tools that change not only the way software is built, but also how it’s delivered. Nicolas Dessaigne, the CEO of Algolia, a real-time search API, took the stage at How to Web Conference 2014 to reveal the changes.

Algolia is a real-time search-as-a-service API that’s experiencing a monthly revenue growth of 30 percent, with customers in more than 40 countries. Nicolas, its co-founder and CEO, has previous experience in working on search engines, and he has previously been the VP of R&D and Product Management Director at Exalead. (see more)

Hacking Your Way To Product Excellence

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Hackathons are a ubiquitous phenomenon nowadays in the tech world. Creating something out of nothing in roughly 24 hours is the best way to foster innovation and find new ways to approach old ideas. But how can startups, companies or even corporations benefit from hackathons? Take the example of SendGrid, the largest email handler service. Martyn Davies, its EMEA Team Lead, explained the innovative power of hackathons that eventually leads to product excellence last November at How to Web Conference 2014 – Product development track.

Martyn is a creative developer, product manager, technical consultant and hack day organizer, with first-hand experience in hackathons (he’s been organizing more than 15 events, some of them for the BBC, Universal Music and SendGrid). He is also a serial mentor on many accelerator programs throughout Europe, as well as an advisor for many early stage startups, thus constantly sharing his knowledge on building tech products. (see more)

Hands-on Investing

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Have you ever wondered what makes the difference between a good angel and a great one? How does an angel, in particular a “hands-on” type of investor, works with the startups he invests in? What’s the dynamics of your relationship with your angel? Adrian Gheara, a known local tech angel, took the stage at How to Web Conference 2014 – Angel investment track to explain it all.

Adrian is a consultant and investor in technology startups. He founded several online projects, had a couple of successful exits, and he’s now helping other local entrepreneurs grow their business by offering them both financial support and know-how. 123ContactForm and Axosuits are some of the startups supported by Adrian Gheara. (see more)