Scene Professional: Unlock
Being a scener usually puts you into the situation that you like work with computers. This of course also happend with me. Beside studying Informatics I had enough time to found my own company. Together with Choi/Vantage and three more guys which are not from the demoscene we founded a limited company. It's called Infomotion Ltd. and we're working in the fields of Mobile Instant Messaging and Mobile Commerce. For us, the sceners, part we of course do the main programming of the needed software. Beside founding and managing all the law-stuff, the hardest part was getting the needed access points to the VSMSC (Virtual Short Message Service Center) from the monopolistic mobile communication providers here in Switzerland. You need this so called Large Account to be able to send and recieve Short Messages which are sent to a certain short number (our number has 5 digits, which is a bit too lengthy, but it's not possible to get shorter ones anymore). To handle all this sending and recieving stuff, Choi programmed our own SMSC which manages it all. Based on this, we're now able to develop every application you can imagine. This goes from Push/Pull-Content Services over Mobile Commerce to Email-Gateways and more. If you're interested in more details and our products you can of course visit our homepage.
After this introduction to my business, I'd like to write down some of the experiences I made with having my own company and how it was to make the thing go well. We registered our name and the company in April of 2001. This was some kind of
launch date. Being five persons founding (Choi and me being informatics students, a business managment student, a law student and a lawyer), we shared the needed money for this and only started with the minimal amount. Since most of us are students, the company is running in parallel with our studies, and this mean that we can't give full power into it. This may be the reason why the start was a bit resinous. I had to get end of June 2001 until we've been able to sign the first contract with a customer. In the time between founding and signing we were developing base products and trying to get customers. From that date on, it went up and up. While first needing to call potential customers and tell them what we do, we now get calls from them asking what we can do. This means, that we have a certain name already which makes our lives easier to live.
I think you've already noticed one thing: I didn't talk about salaries and such yet. Actually, there's not about when coming to that topic. Until now, it was simply not possible to pay ourselves. We of course hope that will change soon since it's slowly getting annoying to work hard and not get money for it. Of course there was and still is another outcome out of this project which maybe can't be paid with money: The whole experience we were able to gain by founding, starting up and pushing our kid. Doing this in reality and having your own money in such a project gives you hundreds of times more experience than just listening to plain theory in some dusty classroom.
The other thing I wanted to write some sentences about is the SceneBiz-Mailinglist provided by my second group Padua (C64). This list was set up to provide some kind of network between sceners that have their own business. It's there to talk about any business related stuff and it is also there to provide a possibility for inter-company working, it may help to start projects and it shall generally be a good thing for business relations of any kind. Sceners shall support sceners, that's what our mind was about when creating this. After announcing the list there were a lot of subscriptions and it's still going up. It's very interesting to see who's doing what in our scene. Some people are working in game companies, some have their own business going and some are still stuying and try to find out what they could do after their studies. The list will probably be splitted up in different sublists, to match certain topics better. The future will show what the people want and what we can do. To subscribe, send an empty email to firstname.lastname@example.org.