All posts in Thoughts

  • Coming soon – #hackfmi

    I was sitting one night, browsing Facebook, reading about how bad our education is, when something struck me.
    We should do a hackathon in the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics (Sofia University) !
    The day before that, i was checking hackprinceton, so the idea formed fast.

    I did a quick post in the Facebook group, where all the students from the Faculty are, describing my idea and the reaction was big.

    The FB Post

    The FB Post


    Few people messaged me and the decision was quick – “Lets do it!”

    My main idea behind this hackathon is to establish a tradition of something cool and useful in the Faculty.
    Why not gather all the bright students, put them in a contest mode and make them do apps, tools & automations that can help the Faculty itself ?
    We are the leading facility to produce IT talents for Bulgaria, yet, there are no signs of innovation and automation in the Faculty.
    Also, traditions are the things that keep the students involved, and help Universities sell more. I want one day, high-schoolers to look are previous hackathon and say – “God, I want in, because i will participate in those epic hackathons!

    Having said that, let me introduce you – #hackfmi, the soon-to-be traditional hackathon in the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics.

    #hackfmi logo

    #hackfmi logo


    With a unique mix of proven models, like Startup Weekend, and some new ideas, we are going to disrupt the Bulgarian educational system, starting from the heart of all.

    With the rising of the Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem, there is a great hunger for good IT talents.
    And this is one of the best ways to put the students in entrepreneurial shoes. Can you develop something for 3 days, that must be working ? That is going to be integrated with the Faculty’s IT system and is going to be used by your colleges ?

    We are working hard, so stay tuned.
    Follow #hackfmi hashtagh on Twitter and hackfmi.com for updates!

    It’s going to be huge.

  • I Should Stop Working for Free

    One day i woke up, and a very specific meme image was on my mind :

    I Should Stop Working For Free

    I Should Stop Working For Free

    Yep. I should stop working for free. At some point, if you don’t monetize your skills, you just have a lot of hobbies.
    And hobbies, unfortunately, don’t pay bills.

    That’s why I decided to start monetizing some of the things I love doing, starting with my blog (and not placing ads).
    I will still produce kick-ass articles with one difference. If you really like them, there’s a way to say that with money 🙂
    Being a big part of the Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem, I consult people a lot about their starting businesses.
    I give ideas and create concepts for campaigns that people love and use. Now, there’s a way to say “Thank you”, expressed in cash.

    You can find out more about me here.

    Here are few call to actions for you. Pick one and do it:

    • Go to the comments, and unleash your hate. Who the hell am I, to ask for money ?
    • Tweeet this article in anger. Here’s a template for you – “Little shit asking for money. Who reads his blog anyway ? #ffs #radorado”
    • Actually subscribe and show your love.
    • Give me feedback (Comments / twitter) – How should I ask for money ? How to do it better ? Will be appreciated!
  • Creating entrepreneurs – The new season of 3Challenge

    As you may know, i am the current president of Start It Smart – One of the biggest entrepreneurship clubs in Bulgaria.

    Since the beginning of the club (4 years ago), all of the members shared one vision & mission – to create entrepreneurs (Including ourselves)
    The flag event of Start It Smart, without any doubt, is 3Challenge – a contest of 3 parts (Idea, Seed, Grow) for innovative business ideas, where we look for people who have innovative ideas but no business/entrepreneurship skills.

    Idea 2013

    Idea 2013


    Read more

  • My pick for the companies from the second Long Weekend

    Lets establish a tradition here.
    Every time there is a Long Weekend (This is the LAUNCHub’s 4-day event where the shortlisted companies pitch & get feedback in order to prepare for the pitching in front of the investment comite) i will write a blog post like that.

    I was part of the volunteers, on behalf of Start It Smart, for the Long Weekend and i managed to catch all of the pitches, talk with most of the companies and actually give them feedback.

    The last time, i got 6 out of 8 teams (Here is the post [In Bulgarian]) so there’s a record to beat.

    Look Book

    Look Book


    I will give my top 5 list with additional 2 companies, because instead of 16, only 14 companies showed for this Long Weekend.
    Here goes the list (You can check all of the shortlisted here)

    • Monolytic – The one-man-army that can change the life of IPTV developers and providers for better. Great technology, should not be missed.
    • SMARThousekeeping – I don’t believe in the product, but the team is rock solid. They should get the investment.
    • Dragon Inside – They have traction and are already making money. Plus, the service is addressing a very interesting problem.
    • Transmetrics – They are solving a problem I don’t understand, but again, the team is solid (Exit to VMWare, Got network in entire Europe)
    • Tesseract Games – Orcs Must Die! in Space. How cool is that?

    And the additional two, that can easily go in the list:

    • Cars Cup – From the founders of eRepublik, an online game where you manage a racing behind the name of your favourite car brand. Users will stick.
    • UseTogether – Share Economy is hot. I got the chance to talk with the team and those guys are cool. I hope i’ll get the chance to speak with them in Bulgaria more often. Also, their brand is already developed visually, so the marketing for them will be an easy task (Giraffes in space !)

    In order to catch some of the vibe of the second Long Weekend, you can check entrepreneur.bg’s live blogging:

  • Ideas worth spreading or Brand worth selling ?

    First, let’s make few things clear – this is not a hate post nor a judgement one for the last TEDxBG 2013.
    I will try to share some thoughts from the point of view of a guy who bought 2 tickets (50 BGN / 25 EUR each) for TEDxBG without even knowing the agenda, and from the point of view of an event organizer (Start It Smart), where we try to create awesome events and conferences.

    TEDxBG 2013 was more than just great. More than half of the speakers were with interesting stories and ideas that made me think and actually commit some action after the event. In Bulgaria, this is not happening everyday, so we should be happy!

    Picture taken from TEDxBG Facebook

    Picture taken from TEDxBG Facebook


    Read more

  • Feedback about Eleven’s Demo Day – KeenSkim

    ***There’s an update – Tudor/KeenSkim is hiring and he asked me to post it here!***
    He is looking for a JavaScript Front End engineer and a Social Media Manager!
    There’s no need to say (But if you think there is – read my article) – KeenSkim’s future is really good looking, so if you’d like to join – drop a mail at tudor [at] keenskim [dot] com
    ***End of Update!***
    This is part 6 of 11 with my feedback about the start-ups from Eleven Accelerator.

    For more information about the blog series and one very important disclaimer, you can read part 1.

    To begin the New Year, i will go with the awesome Tudor Vlad and his product KeenSkim. Again, i have a lot of feedback for him but to be in the nature of his product, i am going to be short and provide summary wherever i can summarize 🙂

    After this, i will post a screenshot of my article summarized by his product.

    KeenSkim

    About the pitch

    Tudor’s pitching is great.
    It seems that going to big conferences like Pioneers Festival, How To Web and Le Web and practicing your pitch really pays off (Tudor did them all :))

    The problem with the information overload is a big one, and the solution was presented in a convincing way. Users don’t have to change their habits. It just happens in their natural flow 🙂
    Read more

  • The infographic is on the way. And a Happy New Year!

    Happy New Year to all of you!
    May you have the best of luck and the strongest of tailwind in your endeavors in the new 2013!

    About the infographic – 50 people subscribed for the infographic from my last article, about the startup ecosystem in Bulgaria!
    This means only one thing – there is going to be an infographic and as i write this – the creation process has already started.

    The idea is simple – to turn the big 1300 words article into something less verbose and more beautiful!
    The infographic will serve as a snapshot of what is happening here and lets hope, that after 5 years, when looking back, we will all laugh at the size of the investments back there.
    Stella Jivkova is going to create the infographic (She did the awesome postcard image for the Startup State article)

    And last, some thoughts to begin the new year with:

    Since the beginning of the year is always about resolutions and resolutions are always about getting stuff done, here’s a great TED talk from Mike Rowe (Dirty Jobs!) about doing stuff and work in general.
    Do not declare war on work and you will get most of your new-year resolution’s done!

  • State of Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem – Winter 2012

    2012 was a wild year for the Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem.
    While two years ago, we were just an outsourcing destination, for one year, i can proudly say, that the entrepreneurial wheel has been spun (For those of you who wonder – this is the 3rd from of spin)

    Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem 2012

    Bulgarian Startup Ecosystem 2012

    Here is the article with the numbers and information, summarising it all for what happened in Bulgaria for a year.
    Read more

  • A must see – Clayton Christensen on disruptive products and successful innovation

    It’s an hour-long video from a Gartner event where Claython Christensen (Author of The Innovator’s Dilemma – if you haven’t read it yet, do so. It’s a great way to start 2013) is talking about the Five keys that improve the probability of successful innovation.

    Clay Christensen

    Credits for the picture – Forbes.com

    To watch the video, follow this link!

    One hour is a long time, especially if you have Twitter and Facebook profile (or just short attention span), but watching the video is an hour well spent.

    Claython talks about the five key things, that can improve your chance of being a successful entrepreneur (Lets say, entrepreneurs are subset of innovators):

    • Disruption or how to kill giants, by being small. (A hint here – don’t jump on the giant’s head, competing with his main product on his main market ;))
    • Compete against Non-Consumption
    • Supply-Chain disruption or the strength (and weakness) of outsourcing. The power of Dell!
    • Target the Job, not the Customer or when people really buy stuff (When there’s a “job” to be done and they “hire” the product to do it for them)
    • Catch the tide of decommodization

    Be sure to comment here on my blog, when you watch the entire video 😉

  • Feedback about Eleven’s Demo Day – Ulympix

    This is part 5 of 11 with my feedback about the start-ups from Eleven Accelerator.

    For more information about the blog series and one very important disclaimer, you can read part 1.

    At first i thought of doing a comparison between Ulympix and Deed (LAUNCHub Investee) because they are both platforms for challenges (Both with ideas to monetize from brands).
    But then i thought it would be better to first write about Ulympix, then write about Deed and let you guys, via a challenge, compare them for yourselves.

    Ulympix

    About the pitch

    The best pitch from DemoDay so far.
    If this guy was selling WS Teleshop stuff to me i’m pretty sure i was going to buy them 🙂
    Daniel really managed to convince everyone that the idea is solid and they are the right team to execute. They have a strategy, some early adopters for validation and are ready to go!

    After watching the pitch 5 times i finally stopped paying attention to Daniel’s presentation skills and found some key points that are really missing. After that and also playing around with the platform i can say that if i had to put my money-giving hat, i would have had some second thoughts.
    Read more