Stock photo agency Shutterstock has opened its European headquarters in Berlin this week. To start, I interviewed founder and billionaire Jon Oringer: His goals in Europe, job offers in Berlin - and his personal recipe for success.
The Amazon of stock photography?
Jon Oringer, according to Forbes Silicon Alley's First Billionaire, is getting ready for stock photography to become what Amazon is for the book market or Google for online search. Nevertheless, the entrepreneur is rather modest and reserved.
At Best of HR – Berufebilder.de® Oringer has already reported on his successful business idea: He started with Shutterstock 2003 by uploading 30.000 to his own pictures and making them available to subscribers. Later he convinced more and more artists to upload more pictures.
Berlin as part of the expansion strategy
Today, the platform markets around 30 million pictures by 400.000 artists worldwide in 150 countries and 20 languages. Around 170.000 new photos are added every week. The company recently broke the 350 million paid download mark.
A sales office in London has recently opened. The new office in Berlin is part of Shutterstock's expansion strategy as a European headquarters - you can see that the company with its subscription-based business model does not need to be afraid of German data protection, unlike some other Internet giants.
"Germany is the largest market in Europe"
750.000 has clients worldwide, from 30 to 40 percent in Europe. "Germany is the largest market in Europe," says Oringer in the video and later explains the choice of location in more detail:
"Berlin is a thrilling and dynamic city in a growing market for Shutterstock. The metropolis offers the perfect blend of art, media and technology, and at the same time is the gateway to the rest of Europe. "And it's exactly in this mix that Oringer finds the best and most creative minds for his company.
Wanted: Employees who think entrepreneurially
From this Europacentrale, Shutterstock would like to push ahead with its expansion plans and build a team of product, technology, sales and customer service specialists. Since this week, 10 full-time employees have been working in the Prenzlauer Berg office. The company expects to be able to hire more than 20 employees by the end of 2014.
Oringer was already in his Article he wrote again in the video: The challenge is to find people who have the same entrepreneurial spirit as himself. Oringer, who initially did everything himself, has found over 300 such employees.
How do you apply?
We are looking for sales people with an understanding of creative people and - what else? - developers for mobile applications. Also, to find such people, the company organizes a hackathon every year (I have just reported the format), in which the creative can live.
Anyone who wants to apply for Berlin, but must take the way across the US. He finds more information. Caution: Job information is not always displayed.
The success recipe of Jon Oringer
The person Jon Oringer, however, can hardly be grasped in the personal conversation: the answers are short and precise, he describes his work style as efficient. Oringer is not one who enjoys talking himself.
This understatement makes him likeable, but it does not make my work as a journalist easier. He also remains modest when it comes to the question of his recipe for success. Above all, he has a very good team to rely on, he says.
And his success was above all the product of his failure, according to Oringer. Before he founded Shutterstock, he has already set several companies in the sand. The lessons learned from these failures directly flowed into the development of Shutterstock. The previous failure was therefore a direct prerequisite for today's success.
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