A Capstone Project turns into a Start-up Company!
Friends since the start of their university career back in 2016, Vadim Evseev, Kresimir Miljak, Maurits Spaan, and Artem Zhigarev, have taken upon themselves to redefine the restaurant industry in Monaco.
Since the completion of their bachelor’s degrees, the four entrepreneurs decided to take various career paths, Maurits started a private banking position in the Netherlands, Artem started his own IT company and Kresimir and Vadim continued their master’s studies at IUM, taking part in the MSc International Management program.
As part of their entrepreneurship course in their master’s program, Kresimir and Vadim had to come up with a business plan which would solve a problem faced in today’s fast-paced environment. Thus, the idea for Appetizr was born.
With positive responses from their market research, Vadim and Kresimir decided to apply for MonacoTech in which they invited Maurits and Artem to join the team. The Appetizr idea was a hit during MonacoTech selection in 2020 and thus, reached the final round of applications. Following the feedback of the MonacoTech jury, the team decided to bring this project to life.
Why have you chosen to do a capstone project instead of an internship?
As business students, we were taught how to open and run a business from our first day at university. We decided to put all our knowledge to the test and open our own company, and there was no better start than doing it as our capstone project.
What inspired you to set up your own company?
Our company was founded because we experienced various mistakes at restaurants and bars in Monaco, and we believed we weren’t the only ones. So instead of waiting for a change to happen, we decided to be the change!
You’re now about to launch your own company. Where does your entrepreneurial spirit derive from?
As young entrepreneurs starting our first company, we are new to many aspects surrounding the business world. This is very exciting as we set ourselves many small milestones, and whenever we achieve them, we celebrate them! This enables us to keep motivated and keep pushing forward no matter the obstacles we face.
In your opinion, what are the Top 3 skills an entrepreneur should have?
Firstly, an entrepreneur should be open-minded and sociable. Networking is vital in the entrepreneurship journey. He/she should be able to make new contacts easily and to talk about his/her product as efficiently as possible. You never know who is in front of you; it could be a potential customer!
Secondly, entrepreneurs need to have patience and understanding– many times, things do not go according to plan, and entrepreneurs need to be patient in dealing with any tasks that may take time to complete.
Thirdly, the entrepreneurship journey is not a smooth path. Entrepreneurs need to believe in themselves and never give up. Still, if you work hard, you will achieve many impressive results!
Why did you choose Monaco for your studies?
Firstly, IUM provides world-class education, and it taught us the most critical aspects of business and how to manage a business successfully. Secondly, Monaco provides the world’s best networking opportunities with businessmen/women from all over the world that are highly respected in their various fields.
In your opinion, what are the key takeaways from the MSc in International Management program you will graduate from?
The MSc International Management provides a wide array of subjects detailing almost every aspect of business management, making the program an excellent educational starting point for young entrepreneurs. The professors for each course also provide precious advice and are always there to help in any possible way.
Favorite memory about IUM?
Being a small university, it is easy to make many friends, and IUM is excellent for that.
What makes you laugh the most?
A good joke will always crack us up!