First name: Verena Maria
Last name: Mai
Graduation year: 2014
Master / Program specialization: Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Company name: UNIspotter GmbH
Position: Co-founder and CEO
Location of business: Vienna (Austria) and Tallinn (Estonia)
Quote: SKEMA provided me with the knowledge and mindset to go out there and ‘just do it.’
I started working on UNIspotter three years ago. During this time, before I had graduated, I was wondering whether to get a job or start my own company. However, I knew that if I do not try at least once to start my own venture, I would always ask myself, “What if…?”
UNIspotter is a mobile application that helps students find suitable study programs. We have expanded from Austria to Germany to the U.K., and currently to India. Step-by-step, we got accepted into Austria’s high-tech incubator, secured first funding, launched the application, got recommended by the ministry of education and EU Erasmus+, and were joined by international investors.
The most crucial step was finding the right co-founders with a diverse skillset along with a common mindset and shared values. I am extremely grateful for the experience: the freedom to make my own decisions and create the environment I would like to work in has proven to be my biggest luxury.
Being an entrepreneur does not only mean to know your numbers, your clients’ needs, and your sales strategy, but also working on yourself: understanding your motivations, your weaknesses and how to pick yourself up during the tough times. It means that you will always need to learn — because you’ll realize there are still so many things you don’t know.