We talked to Henry Fuchs & Daniel Wolter of hubs101, the world’s most effective virtual events platform for business engagement and networking, and they had the following to say:-
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Henry Fuchs: Considering the circumstances, we are doing ok. Thank you for asking. Of course, the pandemic has put pressure on every one one way or another, but overall we have fared well and are thankful for staying healthy.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded hubs101.
Daniel Wolter: While the hubs101-project is brand new, we founded our event company we.CONECT in August 2011. With hard work, excellent products, focus, and good timing, we’ve constantly grown by more than 50% every year, up until last year, for apparent reasons. As a producer of live events, the pandemic quickly became an obstacle business-wise.
As the pandemic escalated last year, we knew we needed to act fast. Luckily, we had already started to produce full-scale digital conferences back in 2019, under the brand ScaleUp 360°. This virtual event series offers business leaders worldwide exclusive web-based content, leads & business communities for their critical business challenges.
So we increased the number of virtual events and immediately developed our in-house built virtual event platform even further to make it available for commercial release.
So since a few months back, we are proud to offer hubs101, the world’s most effective virtual events platform for business engagement and networking, as a stand-alone product in our brand new company with the same name. In short – it is a new way to do business!
How does hubs101 innovate?
Henry Fuchs: Well, we started to produce 360-solutions for anything from internal meetings to full-scale digital conferences even before the world knew that there would be a need for it. We feel confident that our AI-driven matchmaking tool, hubs101, provides the most meaningful end-to-end business matching solution for exhibitions and conferences. It is super easy to measure success and ROI by building modular reports & personalized dashboards. We can also deliver the platform non-branded as a white-label, so it will be like having a personal company platform.
We have built the platform with all our know-how from the event industry (rather than from a pure tech-focused standpoint), so it is the ideal solution for anyone looking to host any call, meeting, or event online.
It is also worth noting that we managed to do so without taking in one single euro or dollar in external investment. We can only imagine what we would have built if we had taken in the kind of cash many other developing companies have needed to come up with something similar to our platform.
How does the coronavirus pandemic affect your business finances?
Daniel Wolter: As an event company, it has affected not only our business but also the whole industry. Thankfully we have still managed to navigate this global crisis in a good way, thanks to our ability to quickly shift further focus to our digital events, as well as developing hubs101. Somehow, we guess you could say we had already started to move towards, or at least expand, our business with a digital transformation. Still, the Covid-crisis forced our hand and made that readjustments happen faster. In our case, it also drove innovation, as we pushed forward much quicker with further development of the event platform development.
Did you have to make difficult choices regarding human resources, and what are the lessons learned?
Henry Fuchs: Thankfully, we managed to re-allocate our resources quite effectively and move many employees between teams. Our learning from it all is simple and straightforward: the world is under constant change, and you never know what happens next. As an entrepreneur and innovator, you need to keep moving and keep a healthy balance between growth, financial stability, and agility. It is super important to constantly improve your services and products for a changing business landscape.
How did your customer relationship management evolve? Do you use any specific tools to be efficient?
Daniel Wolter: We like to build stuff in our company, so we also have produced our own CRM system. It gives us additional flexibility and gives us opportunities to gradually change or improve its functionalities based on our customers’ evolving needs. The event industry is often said to be old-fashioned and shuns away from innovation and new technology – but that is not true in our case!
Did you benefit from any government grants, and did that help keep your business afloat?
Henry Fuchs: Yes, we have taken part in the German government’s short-time work initiative. The support made it easier to keep our employment rates high. Without governmental support, we might have been forced to make some heartbreaking decisions in terms of staffing.
Your final thoughts?
Daniel Wolter: We advise everyone to contact our friendly and helpful team for a free demo consultation of hubs101. It is possible to book an appointment directly on the website.
You can also see the virtual platform in action by attending one of our digital ScaleUp 360°-events. Check out the complete list of upcoming events on this link.
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