This is the second of a multiple part series following Trip4real on their #SF4real journey. Barcinno will be tracking the team during their trip to San Francisco where they are meeting Airbnb’s founders and many other Silicon Valley influencers. Below the team gives us some insights into the second stage of their adventure in the Bay Area. Stay tuned for more details!
The trip4real adventure continues! We are now on day 5 of our Bay Area adventure and the rain keeps falling. Where is this Indian summer I’ve all heard about? Rain schmain, it’s all good fun! Even the worst of storms couldn’t stop us today when we have Twitter, Miguel Valls and Chartboost awaiting us. What a day.
We started off the shenanigans in a famous café for startup locals called Rose’s Café where many entrepreneurs hang out, code, eat, and scheme world domination. We had a morning meeting with Migel Valls a Catalan super business angel who resides in SF and who has a wealth of experience as an entrepreneur and investor.
Before getting down and dirty with the details, we were recommended to try the typical American pizza for breakfast which might sound a little weird but we always like to try what the locals recommend, and it turns out the sweet pizza was pretty damn tasty! The subsequent hours were spent with Miguel listening to his stories of an entrepreneur turned investor. He provided us with some extremely valuable and most importantly actionable feedback. Things move here at rocket speed so keeping up with everything is a job in itself.
Our next stop was with Pepe Agell from Chartboost. Unfortunately we didn’t get the opportunity to meet with Maria Alegre, his wife and CEO but we hope to catch up with her in the next few days. That said, Pepe is an amazing entrepreneur who has quickly transformed Chartboost into the worlds largest only games platform having raised over $21MM since 2011. As an individual, he embodies the essence of what it is to be an entrepreneur: passion, hard work, inspiration, and we found him very easy to talk to. We spent a lot of time sharing ideas and us taking lots of notes as he gave us lots of advice. The one piece of advice that stuck with is was “get shit done” – execute, execute, execute!
After our master class with Pepe, the next stop on the agenda was with Twitter. We are excited to check out their offices. We had a meeting setup with César Puerta, an engineer with a wealth of experience and who showed us the entrails of this ‘monster’, letting us see first hand how they get things done here. It’s incredible, the level of talent and the positive energy that these offices breathe. They taught us a few tricks of the trade showing us how to tweet more than one photo and to tag people too. Learning the tricks of the trade!
Finally the sun has come out! How glorious SF looks in the light. It’s nice to be able to see the city in a different light and also to not arrive to every meeting soaked from head to foot. We will be exploring some more of the city this weekend. We spent the morning in our makeshift office taking care of some agenda calls fore the rest of the trip. So much to do in so little time… It has literally been non stop with us working like crazy every single minute of the day but we are absorbing so much; the learning experience here is definitely accelerated.
Around midday, with the Google transport bus as our private chauffeur, we headed over to the Pinterest offices in the Soma district (we love this area) to sit with Silvia Oviedo, the Localization Manager. Upon arriving, we all got this feeling of “wow, this place is giving off a great vibe”. The offices are simple with nordic design influences but still with a fun and interesting touch which is characterized by the Pinterest brand. We wouldn’t complain if these were our offices. We have some great ideas for our future offices.
As we were taking it all of this in, Siliva (who is very experienced having worked at eBay and Yahoo and who is now taking the lead at Pinterest) showed us how to get the most out of Pinterest for our users and how we can offer a more superior “service”. She was very insightful and showed us some things we never knew existed so be prepared as some big things re coming on the Trip4real Pinterest page 🙂
After an incredible session in Pinterest we headed over to Dropbox where we met with Alex Castellarnau who is part of the product marketing and design team. We had an enthralling conversation about the importance of the implementation of company values and how to instill a company culture in all areas of the workplace. This is something that every business knows they need to do but that few companies really put into place. This is most certainly not the case at Dropbox where everyone is obsessed with perfection to the last details; from the hiring process, the way they serve a coffee to the way they write every line of code.
We are squeezing everything possible out of every minute of our day, absorbing the knowledge and energy that this city breathes. On top of the meetings we have been to numerous Meetup events, meeting with a bunch of startups and entrepreneurs and we were also lucky enough to hear Luca Prasso speak and also members of the founding team at 500 Startups.
And tomorrow? More and more awesomeness. We are not stopping the express train. This is our dream and we want to take advantage of every single second!