Fabrice Bernhard recently spoke at a dinner for non-technical founders on building your first tech product. As a co-founder and CTO of Theodo, Fabrice’s business is effectively a ‘tech-team-for-hire’ working with both startups and large corporations. Here’s what he had to say when we put his business under the spotlight.
What’s the elevator pitch for your business?
We build web and mobile solutions in a leaner, more cost-effective way. Our teams of very smart coders focus on the 40% of functionalities that really matter to solve your business problem. This allows for faster time-to-market and more focus on the end-user needs which in turn maximises the chances of success of the delivered product.
What were you doing before you launched your company?
Before starting Theodo, I co-founded, as a student, a first Internet Startup called Allomatch.com. Allomatch helps you find the pubs and bars where to watch sports games in France.
If you have co-founders, where did you meet them?
I met my co-founder during my military service. Bored by casern life, we took charge of the organisation of the monthly parties together. I guess that is the first time we realised that even though we were very different in terms of personality, we were a good match to get things done.
What’s your biggest ‘lightbulb’ moment?
A key moment was when we started using the services of external experts in 2011: first an executive coach and then an agile coach, lean coaches, marketing experts, etc. To radically improve, you need expertise and distance from the day-to-day, which only good external consultants can bring.
What will the rest of 2016 bring?
We just got elected best startup to work for in France in the HappyAtWork ranking! I wonder what else 2016 can bring, for the moment I’m focused on structuring our London office.
One piece of advice for someone starting a business in your sector?
Advice that is valid for any tech startup: I recommend hiring very smart developers and involving them in the the business. The most important bottleneck in most tech startups is not solving tech problems, it is understanding and implementing the right tech solution to the current business problem. Only smart developers in direct contact with the business can give you the right competitive advantage.
Convince someone to use your product/service in under 50 words.
On average in software, 60% of the features built are never or rarely used. Work with one of our teams of smart coders to ensure you focus on building the right product, in record-time and in the most efficient way to out-distance competition.
What’s your favourite startup in your sector (not including your own)?
I am impressed by Palantir‘s immense growth in a similar sector as ours.
What’s your favourite London restaurant?
The food at Piquet is excellent. And it is exactly the kind of cultural collaboration I love; great French cuisine by an English chef.
What’s your favourite meal?
Good food, good wine and great discussions on a warm summer evening.
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