Interview with Stefan Kuruc – CEO & Co-Founder of Help’n’trade

Stefan Kuruc - Help'n'Trade

If your business is not online, it is as if you do not exist. However, my parents, or yours, have no means to digitalize their business.

I drive Help’n’Trade to help local businesses flourish in the digital era!”

Stefan Kuruc – Help’n’Trade

Where are you from and what is your path until Help’n’Trade?

My name is Stefan and I was born and raised in Slovakia. In the summer of 2009, when I was 19, I worked on construction site during the day and in bakery in the night, just so that I have enough money to go and study in Germany. During my studies I had 2 night jobs just to sustain myself and save money to go for half a year to Russia, which was my dream at the time. I’m mentioning this, cos I wish I had our application at the time of being a student, I’d definitely offer my skills on it to have easier time studying abroad, haha 😀  

After my studies I worked as a consultant in IT project management in Germany for about 4 years before transitioning to Switzerland to continue consulting career, but in visual analytics and business intelligence.

How and why did you join Help’n’Trade?

I worked as a fire extinguisher, especially in the last years… come, solve problems, move on. I saw a lot of big companies inside out and gained a tremendous amount of experience, but it drained me of my energy. That is why I decided, if I am already getting grey hair for big corporations, I may as well help small companies, community where I live, or work on a solution helping the environment. Lucky enough, in exactly that moment a friend of mine called, whose question opened my eyes to what is really needed for a sustainable future. Answer to that question was a seeding idea behind Help’n’Trade, which is a solution to all 3 of mine concerns.

What do you like the most about Help’n’Trade?

It has an endless potential for value creation! We started with a simple idea of creating a marketplace for local goods and services. My head is spinning whenever I think of what all great things we will do with our application. It will be a business suite on a mobile phone to manage your business, it will be a marketplace to connect with your neighbours and exchange, it will be a place where a student can offer her/his skills and get a fair reward. No more struggle, just benefits.

Where do you see the greatest value and how do you contribute to it?

I personally see the greatest value in 3 things. 1st of all, it will be a place to start and manage your local business. Be discoverable, sell online, test your ideas, learn from clients, keep improving. Imagine traditional professions like plumber or blacksmith, with our application these type of businesses will have a simple yet powerful set of tools to not only survive, but to thrive in a digital age!
2nd our application will cut C02 emissions significantly, because of local interaction. Did you know up to 25% of CO2 emissions in logistics are created in the last few kilometres of a delivery? We will reward local interaction and through that significantly cut down individual CO2 footprint.
3rd you have a freedom to decide what is Help’n’Trade for yourself. Use it to give away your old furniture, use it to find local professional handy worker, exchange with your neighbours, or get engaged in your neighbourhood.

What can you offer to the world yourself and with Help’n’Trade?

Personally, am full of ideas and I have a healthy dose of craziness in me. But sometimes craziness is exactly what is needed to break the ice, to break the standards and make something unique and awesome.

Additionally, I believe on an individual level, none of us wants to harm the environment, but often we take actions which do exactly that. Simply, because we need to take care of our daily challenges and we need to balance money, time and effort. While using Help’n’Trade you can solve your everyday challenges, while helping your local economy, community and environment will benefit from it as well.

What makes you a great teammate?

I listen and I like transparency. Those 2 help me bring a new perspective to a challenge ahead, but also to communicate what we need to improve or what is great. I want to lead by example and reason, not by hierarchy and emotion. I think that makes me pretty easy-going with the rest of the team. Also, our team really matters to me. I enjoy every day I work with Alina or Hakim or anyone else and I make sure our team has no obstacles, is happy and understands the full picture.

What are you looking forward to the most?

10.000th user and 1111th paying customer! Those mean we enabled great deal of value generation for the local economy, we saved tons of CO2 and we empowered immense number of individuals.

Where do you see yourself in few years?

I have a ton of ideas, but my focus now and in the coming years lies with Help’n’Trade. I want to make our application the best on the market and I want to see our team grow and expand beyond Switzerland, enjoy the fruits of our work and see what a positive impact we are delivering every day.

Departing words?

Help’n’Trade is so much more than what we can possibly present on our website, in a pitch-deck or some other communication material. We are here to make a positive change, but we need help in every aspect of our startup and our application. Join us if you want to be a part of a great team and make a measurable impact.