Monday, 8 February 2016

Discovering startups 3: Interview with Roberto Macina, founder of Qurami

Roberto Macina, founder of Qurami

Roberto Macina is the founder of the Qurami, an application that helps you not to waste time during the queue. We asked him some questions for an interview.

1) When and where were you born?
I was born in Rome on May 29th, 1984 and I’ve always lived there.

2) Where did you study?
I studied Computer Engineering at “Rome III” University.

3) How did you get the idea of Qurami?
The idea of Qurami first raised while I was studying. It actually happened during a queue at the University administrative office. Looking at my iPhone I just thought: “there must be an app to avoid the line with a smartphone, without losing my time here”. Well, there wasn’t. And I invented it.

4) How much money did you need for launching Qurami? Was it hard to be financed?
I immediately involved other people to help developing my idea from a technical and commercial point of view. Initially I just used my personal money to start the project. Then we joined the Incubator Luiss-Enlabs and, thanks to the growing network of contacts and the first happy clients, we received some financing. To convince the investors we tried to go beyond our good idea: we created a great team of experts in multiple fields, developed a credible business plan and improved the technical quality of the app.

5) How many people work for Qurami and what kind of contract do they have?
Currently there are 14 people  working for the Qurami project. Contracts range from fixed-term to open-end contracts, plus some consulting services.

6) The headquarter of Qurami is near the mani station of Rome (Termini), why did you choose that place? Wasn't it better to be outside the centre?
Our offices are located in the Luiss-Enlabs incubator, inside Termini railway station in Rome. The location is great, there are a lot of other innovative companies and a continuous series of events on entrepreneurship and technology. We really feel to work in the hearth of a vibrant business environment.

7) What is the business model of Qurami? What's the percentage you get from Apple and other companies?
Our business model is very simple. Qurami is free to download for the users while clients pay an annual fee to use the app. The cost varies with the number of premises.

8) If an italian wanted to create a start up about an application, would you suggest him/her to stay in Italy or to move to Silicon Valley (assuming he/she has the chance to move)?
We have created our company in Italy and from here we are expanding to several markets. It’s possible to do good business in our country, but it’s vital to always have an open approach and think globally.


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