Introducing Stanislav Richter. Could you tell us a bit more about yourself and what you were doing before signageOS?
Stan: I’ve started a couple of companies in different industries, was a management consultant and also a postdoc at the university. But I was always the most passionate about startups and working on new things and solving real problems.
Do you remember the first time you two thought of the idea for signageOS? What was your vision back then?
Stan: signageOS is actually a service we built from an internal tool we developed for our company we started before signageOS. This company develops software that allows its customers such as big banks, retailers, airports or quick service restaurants to easily manage and put different content on screens. We found out that managing the content is an easy part, but managing the screens and playing the content on the screens is super complex. So we built this internal tool which allowed us to beat established players on the market. After they realized that it is really tough to compete with us, they wanted to buy this tool to be able to compete. And this is how sigangeOS was started.
What were the first reactions you got from your friends about your mission to start a tech company?
Stan: I would say they were ambiguous. Somewhere supportive, some were raising their eyebrows. But that was nothing that could’ve stopped us.
What were your biggest fears when starting out?
Stan: Starting new things from scratch is extremely difficult, I would say close to impossible. And that is not because of just one thing. It is because you are trying to accomplish something that none has ever accomplished before. So you don’t know what you are going to face out there. And that is actually good for you. Because if you knew what you were going to face along the way, you wouldn’t probably never start. So don’t be scared, just get ready for some tough battles and casualties.
Do you remember one epic mistake you made along the way? What happened?
Stan: I think that every startup journey is paved by mistakes and oversteps. But you just have to keep on moving forward. If I was to name one of our major mistakes it probably would be that we waited too long or we didn’t really put enough time into finding good successors to manage the original company. That resulted in us, founders, splitting the time between 2 companies and being distracted. If we didn’t solve this, we could have harmed or even lost both of the companies. However, this turned out just great and now we have awesome partners and management in place which we are super happy with!
If you were to choose one moment in the history of signageOS you are particularly proud of, what would it be?
Stan: What I really like about our company is the team. Whenever we face adversity or difficulties, we always come together and just get through no matter what. Be it extreme time pressure coming from business partners, technological challenges, global pandemic or fundraising. That is our secret weapon.
And finally, what advice would you give to all the upcoming entrepreneurs out there?
Stan: If you know this is what you want to do, simply start and endure. It is going to be difficult, it is going to hurt and it is going to be uncomfortable. But if you endure, you’ll find the way through. You might end up somewhere else than you originally planned, at different times or with different people, but you can get there if you keep on going. Just like us. We are not at the end of our journey and it is still a long way to go, but I know we will get there eventually, because we will never give up!