In this article, we had a chat with one of entrepreneurs, Kemal Gökbaş, and tried to discover his adventure. You can below find his turning points in life in regards to entrepreneurship, their technology with its competitive advantage and many others. Fingers cross to read it .
Q1. Could you please tell us a little bit about yourself and your company?
A1. In the university years, we were keen on technology and computers. This continued in our professional career. During this period, we had done several personal and freelancer projects, mostly web site coding and design. After having almost 10 years of corporate experience, we took the first steps as an entrepreneur and started working on a real product. The idea came from our customers in the real estate market. They were in need of a product that will allow them to make instant live chats with their customers who are browsing their web site. We developed the product and it was started being used immediately. So, we saw the opportunity and gave up other works, then completely focused on this project. In one and half year, product came to a well mature level so OnDestek has born.
Q2. What you have achieved so far?
A2. Currently more than 2000 web sites are using OnDestek. Almost 100 of them are paying customers. There are corporates, municipalities, hospitals, universities among them which makes us proud. Our growth metrics are also going good at the moment.
Q3. What are your mid and long term plans? İn terms of your team and your expansion?
A3. In the mid term, we aim to dominate Turkish market then expand to MENA region. As a SaaS company we have the capability of scaling our software very fast. The more difficult point here may be scaling the team and company. We have plans to handle this growth anyway. We know that messaging softwares will become more and more popular globally. We think that this is a clear signal of AI powered automated messaging applications (chatbots) will eventually become a hot industry. We have already started working on this area. As for the long term plans, after dominating Turkish and MENA market, we will try to direct our expansion direction to Europe and North America. With a mature and innovative chatbot technology, we think we would be holding a great chance to make a fast start in different regions.
Q4. How YFYİ contributed to your success?
A4. We were moving almost blindly before joining YFYİ acceleration program. The worst part is we weren’t even aware of that. During two months long education period, we took entrepreneurship courses which were all given by experienced people, joined business development classes, learned growth hacking tricks, had chance to sharpen our presentation skills in front of our mentors. At the end, we won a prize as well, given by Microsoft in the Demoday. YFYİ also helped us to move our office to Teknokent. They are still introducing us to new connections. Their networking circle feeds us well. We feel their support right behind us every time we take a new step further.
Q5. Your advices to future entrepreneurs?
A5. It’s very critical to test your product-market fit before you start your product/business. Follow lean approach. This prevents you to waste your resources. In a recurring cycle; build your hypothesis, test it rapidly, then make the regarding move (execute or change). Never hesitate to pivot your idea when it is the right time. You are a start-up, not Romeo/Juliet chasing after Juliet/Romeo to the death.