The Dane is one of the storied entrepreneur of our times. He has brought a rare freshness to notorious customer service, starting, perhaps, with its elevating name. Having started out in his native Denmark in 2007, Svane and his co-founder quickly realized what they had to do to make it big.
The next year, Zendesk moved to the United States. The rest, as they might say, is history. Last year, Zendesk signed off with a humungous 25,000 customers – Evernote. Its clients include large publicly listed corporations such as Groupon, too.
Startup Grind, founded in 2010, is a global organization that has emerged from the belief that entrepreneurs gain the most by sharing their experiences, or grind. So it involves a variety of chats, fireside or otherwise. The U.S.-headquartered organisation has a network in 15 countries and 35 cities across the world, including Melbourne and Sydney. It aims to reach 100 chapters worldwide by 2014.
Chris Joannou, who runs Startup Grind Melbourne, is a serial entrepreneur – “with businesses in everything from Tech to Skateboards,” as his profile says. He runs the Melbourne Internet Business Group and DreamPushers. Outside of technology, he runs an innovative private label food and beverage business.
Joannou says Startup Grind event series has hit Australian shores in a big way. Most recently, it hosted Scott Farquhar, co-founder and CEO of Atlassian, in Sydney. Startup Grind Australia has previously featured the likes of freelancer Matt Barrie, Xero’s Chris Ridd and Red Bubble’s Martin Hosking.
“Each fireside chat brings to life the amazing journey of each of the entrepreneurs, in a candid look at starting from scratch, building an audience, raising capital, and all the hurdles we all need to overcome as aspiring entrepreneurs,” said Joannou.