Forbes 30 under 30
This month, Forbes Slovakia released their 30 under 30 list. And guess what? Our CEO Bo Pokštefl is on the list! Therefore we decided to make him a cover story on our blog. We asked him some official and also some personal questions :). Continue reading to learn more about his plans with Kontentino, what he values the most and what kind of motorbike he rides.
Kontentino was created in Triad advertising agency. In the first year, it was just him and our CTO, Ivan. Later, our head of Sales, Juraj, joined us. After another year Hana, our head of Customer Success came. In the last 9 months, our team tripled from 5 to 15 people.
More than 3000 advertising agencies and brands use Kontentino, with more than 10 000 active users. In 2018, Kontentino made it to the top 20 startups at Web Summit.
Interview with our fresh 30 under 30 – Bo Pokštefl
If you could describe Kontentino as a company in 3 words:
Professional and friendly, we care, one step ahead mindset (not really 3 words right :D)
What is your greatest achievement in life?
Professionally it is definitely Kontentino. That we have an amazing team passionate about social media marketing.
You definitely helped Kontentino to “stand on its own feet”, would you say Kontentino helped you in some way?
Kontentino helped me in so many ways. How to tackle challenges differently, how to think more critically, how to be more empathetic to others, how to be more humble, how to care more.
What would you do differently in Kontentino, looking back at the past three years?
There is nothing major that I would do differently. I believe that all the decisions we made were the best possible decisions at that time, with the knowledge and experience we had.
What are your hopes/plans for Kontentino?
My hopes are: we want to become a strong and confident 3rd party vendor of social media sites with more power to negotiate APIs. Because that is the major limitation when developing the best social media tool for agencies and brands.
We want to listen to our users even more. They are the innovation drivers. We want to encourage conversations with them even more.
With all mentioned above, I believe that we will create an even healthier and more sustainable business with more and more happy and successful users.
What do you think are the most important values of a successful company?
Adaptability and a good sense for future trends. Healthy company culture (“culture eats strategy for breakfast”) with talented and passionate people. Sometimes you can hire the most qualified people but you won’t get the ideal company culture if they’re not the right fit.
Any motto/advice you live by?
The purpose of life is Happiness (Dalai Lama). Being happy means that you fulfil all your needs and you can share happiness with others who might not be there yet. However, now I question this with the quote “The purpose of life is to be useful” (Ralph W. Emerson).
Kontentino is still bootstrapped (self-funded), why doesn’t Kontentino have any investors yet?
This is mainly due to the fact that we are a spin-off of an advertising agency. We were formerly developed as an internal tool. Later on, we became an independent company. So the first investments were made by Triad Advertising. Last year we paid all the loans back and we are profitable. Everything we earn we invest back to the company. That is another reason we do not have an investor.
Last but not least, someone might argue that without an investor we are growing slowly. That might be true but we focus more on the product, company culture and sustainability than on skyrocketing our growth. Because that ends up many times as a failure with all money burned and with the mistakes that necessarily happen when growing too fast.
There might be a time in the future we would need an investment push. So let’s see what happens next ;).
What is the most important asset of Kontentino?
People passionate about what they do.
In the last six months, Kontentino grew from a 5-person team to a team of 15 people. How do you go about choosing your employees?
We have 2 most important criteria. We look for a candidate that is passionate about what he or she does. The second one is if he or she is a good person and a good fit for the team.
Best and worst purchase?
Best is my motorcycle, I use it every day instead of a car. It is more ecological, faster and much more fun. Imagine you love to ski and now you would be able to ski to work.
I make a lot of bad purchases at the airports. It is all shiny and you have that feeling that you are a globetrotter when you buy stuff at airports. Add the boredom of waiting and all of a sudden you are buying a lot of things you don’t really need.
The most stupid thing I’ve ever bought was a ticket to win a sports car at the airport. The ticket was not cheap at all. Sadly, I did it every time I was travelling home from Copenhagen airport.
First ever job, first job after college?
My father has a construction company so I naturally worked at the building sites since I was 14. I wasn’t so handy around the house but it thought me to build or fix some stuff which is a bit unusual for youngsters.
My first job after college was for West Virginia University where I was helping students to validate their business ideas, do market research or marketing strategies. Parallelly with that, I was trying to commercialize and sell one web platform for university gear/apparel.
5 things you would take with you on a deserted island?
A boat to get me back to civilization. I handle loneliness badly.
Are you a dog person or a cat person?
Both, I love dogs but never really raised one. Now I am taking care of my sister’s cat. She is quite independent which is good :).
What are your hobbies? What do you like to do in your free time?
As I mentioned above, I love to ride a motorcycle. That is the time when you are just by yourself with your thoughts and also you can feel the adrenaline when you use the gas a bit more than you’re suppose to.
I am trying to work out a little more. It is very important to have some physical activity. If you are not so motivated to do it regularly, hire a good trainer. He’ll make you do the workout properly.
I love to spend weekends with my friends, drink some good wine and just walk around my city. It is a great way to relax and reset after an intensive week at work.
What’s the most useless talent you have?
Bowling. When I played it for the first time I was hitting strikes all the time. I have played it only 5 times in my life and I am still hitting strikes :D.
What’s the most ridiculous fact you know?
The first purpose of the tie was actually for a man to clean beard and hands. Later they started to wear fancier and prettier ties, so it became fashionable.
The royalty in medieval times was using small kittens to wipe their butts…
How do you feel about putting pineapple on pizza?
When there is no other option… But I need to add ketchup to make it a real gastronomic disaster. (Actually, I like it this way, but never order it.)
What was the career you wanted to pursue when you were six years old?
I wanted to be a rally race car driver. I was waking up at 5:45 on Saturday mornings to watch a moto-sport TV show. I must say, if I had an option to drive sports cars on Saturday mornings, I would wake up, even though I am not an early bird.
What movie title would sum up your time in Kontentino so far?
Wow what an interesting question for a guy who watches 2 movies a year on average which makes 56 movies in my entire life. South Park (TV Series), because we have a good and sarcastic sense of humour in the team and we also try to solve world problems on team-buildings.