We talk to one of our co-founders Julia Emmert from Munich about how she created ezebee.com and the struggles that go with being an entrepreneur.
Tell me something about you (curiosity, hobby)
What defines me the most, is probably the fact, that I have been living and working in different European countries for recent years: Germany, Switzerland, France and Spain . That has shaped my point of view in many ways and now enables me to work in an international team. I would consider myself as a European woman more than being German. My biggest “hobby” is my girl, but I love travelling, reading and doing a lot of other things … just that sometimes I don’t have the time to do it all!
What kind of professional training did you have (your studies)?
I studied in Germany and France. In Munich I did a masters degree in marketing and communications and in Paris a postgraduate diploma in information and communication. But I believe that the most important thing is, that you never stop learning!
What kind of professional experience do you have? How did it help you in building your project?
After my studies I started to work at a start up company – a stock-photo agency including a huge photographers community. I immediately liked the way startups work – working in a small but dynamic team, taking responsibility for a lot of different projects. Later on I started working in a big online marketing agency and had the chance to learn a lot in all different fields of online marketing. Both experiences help me a lot today.
4. Let’s talk about ezebee.com. Why ezebee? When did you have the idea? ezebee.com was born in…? How has it grown in recent years? (some percentage and grouping of activities)
ezebee.com was founded 2013 in the midst of the economic crisis . When I opened my own online marketing agency based in Mallorca, we realized that selling online is crucial for small companies to succeed, but to do this can be very complicated and expensive. By establishing ezebee.com, we wanted to solve this problem and create a free easy-to-use platform to get your businesses online within minutes. We immediately had huge success, especially in Spain, but also in Germany, Poland and Italy. Recently we expanded into India and we are really surprised at how fast we are growing! By now we offer a language base of 9 different languages (we started with 6) and are supporting communities in more than 150 countries.
5. Strengths and values of ezebee.com How do ezebee.com try to help women
Our aim is to help small businesses to succeed against big brands. Millions of potential vendors and creative small businesses unfortunately can’t afford to design, run, host and market their own website or e-commerce system. Our showroom technology enables these users to start selling within minutes, from anywhere in the world. With our internal currency we also aim to move profits from the banks to sellers and buyers – on ezebee.com you can transfer money without any costs or commissions. Furthermore ezebee.com is a one-price-one-currency zone where all goods are offered at the same fair price and with equal laws for everyone – independent from the country you are living in. A women producing shirts in Bangladesh can thus sell her shirt at a fair price in Europe. Most of our users are women that up until now did not have the possibility to be a part of global e-commerce. Our goal is to enable much more women, especially from 3rd world countries such as India, but also South Africa and Indonesia to sell their products for a fair price directly to the consumer, not to big resellers.
6. What do you think about handicrafts?
Well, I like it. And I like to take a share of global internet revenues away from big brands to small and hand-crafting companies. But ezebee.com is not about hand-crafting. It is about small businesses of any kind! – You also can offer your service, rent an apartment or whatever you are offering!
7. You’re a mum. How can you facilitate both private and professional life?
Would you ask that question to a man? – Honestly, I think the question alone is discriminating. My partner and I are share housework and take care of our daughter together. But sure, sometimes it can be stressful.
8. What do you think about difficulties that women face in their job, also after a maternity leave? What do you think about their ability to reinvent?
Well, when I asked my former boss if I could work part time from home after giving birth he told my that once I had one kid, I would like to have more and therefore surely will stop working. That’s when I decided to quit and to start my own business. Hopefully this does not happen a lot nowadays. But getting a child also always is a good change to start thinking about what you are doing and what you really want to do.
9. Do you have a suggestion for women that want to start a new professional way and take a personal challenge?