San Francisco of Ukraine

“Odesa has it’s own pace of life. We don’t really care about anybody else. We value good stuff. We enjoy the sea, the Sun and good food. Actually, Odesa is something like  San Francisco in America. It’s not like any other city,” said my future boss, Odesa native.

In two weeks I moved to Odesa.

Sunrise in Odesa

 

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Tip for Startups: make sure you don’t hire a**holes

Some time ago I had a chance to enjoy Mikkel’s interview at Startup Grind San Francisco. Mikkel Svane is a Founder and CEO at Zendesk.com, a web-based, SaaS-delivered help desk that enables companies to provide better customer service. How did it all begin? In 2007 three guys in Denmark had a simple idea – to make their customers happy. The idea soon became a business model, and nowadays over 100 M people around the world receive support from Zendesk (you can read the whole story from Mikkel himself here – Zendesk: What is the founding story of Zendesk?).

zendesk

 

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Tips for Startups: build a relationship with your investor long before you will have to ask for money

Danielle Morrill is really cool!

Named by the Forbes ’30 Under 30′ for Social/Mobile Technology in 2011, she has over 10 years of entrepreneurial experience at Y-Combinator, Twilio, and Seattle 2.0. Currently Danielle is the CEO of Mattermark, a platform which is basically Bloomberg for Startup Investors. Mattermark  provides signals and reports for investors on startup opportunities out there. As Danielle said herself, “Most startups don’t know what kind of traction they have. With Mattermark I can find out whether your startup has traction or not without your help :)”.

During her interview at the Lean Startup Circle meetup, Danielle raised a curtain for us on collecting funds and, what’s more important, on building relationships with potential investors. Here are a couple of things I picked up.

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San Francisco Chocolate Tour

Wanna do something tasty and fancy in SF without putting on weight?  Try a walking chocolate tour! You’ll visit the best chocolate spots in SF, get high on chocolate in under 2 hours, and stay happy for the rest of the day. Check out Groupon for some good deals (regular price was 65 bucks, bit we got it for 18) and don’t forget a bottle of water! With all the sweets you will definitely need one. When to start shopping? Well, you can buy a little bit of everything at each stop, or wait till the last one (if you can) and then make up your chocolate mind 🙂

For a chocolate lover like me this was the best birthday present.

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Gay, gay, gay, every day.

Mid of August, but summer hasn’t started yet. Foggy and grey Saturday morning in SF… Looking for some fun and bright colors, I headed to the most cheerful and colorful neighborhood of the city on a walking tour around Castro with San Francisco Walking Tours. Not only had I a good time walking around, but I picked up a couple of fun facts and learned something new 🙂