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Yanis Mellata: London Has a Massive Network of Talent Operating in All Key Functions Needed for a Startup

Yanis Mellata of Kosy Office.

Tell us about yourself?

I’m Yanis, founder of Kosy Office. I launched Kosy at the onset of the pandemic to help remote teams be more connected. Before launching Kosy, I was working on strategy consulting at BCG and in a tech startup in the UK called Critizr.

What lessons has being an entrepreneur taught you?

You only ever know so much. Knowing that you don’t know is the best leverage one can have as they will spend the right amount of energy to find the information they need.

If you could go back in time to when you first started your business, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

Keep a small team in the early days until you reach product market fit. The load on each person will be massive but you will be able to move so much quicker.

A lot of entrepreneurs find it difficult to balance their work and personal lives. How have you found that?

The last 2 years have been exclusively focused on work however I was ready to make that trade-off. As we become more and more established, it’s becoming easier for me to spend additional mental energy into building the personal life I want.

Give us a bit of an insight into the influences behind the company?

My cofounder and I have been working remotely for about 15 years in total. We also brought a team on board that has had experience working remotely.

What do you think is your magic sauce? What sets you apart from the competitors?

We are approaching the product with a very B2C mindset as we need end users to love using it in order for it to become a key part of their workday.

How have you found sales so far? Do you have any lessons you could pass on to other founders in the same market as you just starting out?

There is a big difference between generating revenue and getting your product used by teams. The former will give you runway to build a sustainable business, the latter will give you defensibility and leverage into acquiring customers.

What is the biggest challenge you have faced so far in your business, and how did you overcome it?

Pivoting away from use cases that were only short-term and driven by the pandemic but were not going to be around in the long term.

What do you find are the advantages of operating your business in London?

London has a massive network of talent operating in all key functions needed for a startup. It is also extremely good for raising funding.

Are there any issues with having a London based business? Have you experienced these?

Salaries are very expensive and cost of living as well. Makes it harder for founders to balance personal lives while balancing constraints of a startup.

How has the higher than UK average cost of living impacted your ability to work and live in London and how has this also impacted your ability as an employer?

Yes – we hired a lot of our staff outside of the UK in order to be able to bear with the costs. Also luckily, we don’t have a physical office so we are not impacted by rent prices. When it comes to more senior talent however, it is extremely easy to hire here.

If you had to relocate your business to another city in the UK, which one would it be and why?

Probably Manchester as it is quite accessible and relatively close to London however with much lower costs.

How has BREXIT impacted your business (if at all)?

It hasn’t really other than a lot of EU grants and financing opportunities not available anymore.

What is your vision for your company in the next 5 years?

We want to be the operating system for remote teams.

And finally, if people want to get involved and learn more about your business, how should they do that?

Please reach out to [email protected] or check out our job openings at Kosyoffice.com/jobs! We love speaking to remote teams all over the world.

Follow Kosy Office on Twitter or Linkedin.

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