Move from Russia to Miami and launch your startup in the US market. the story of our participant
About the program participant

My name is Vladimir, and I am an entrepreneur currently living in the United States for about four years. My first exposure to America was through Ruslan Gafarov's program, which I discovered quite accidentally from my acquaintances in London while on a business trip. Other participants talked about a program that focused mainly on Silicon Valley, which intrigued me.

Since 2014, I have been running my own business primarily in outsourcing, providing unskilled linear staff such as packers, loaders, and suppliers. We are based in Ulyanovsk and are now the largest company in the city, with major clients like Legrand, Bridgestone, Schaeffler Group, and Aviastar. We also have a few major clients in Moscow. Formerly known as Stimul Job, we are now developing the VegaStaf brand.

The key decision to try myself in the US and move here was made thanks to this program. During the tour, I had no idea how startups were created, how to attract money, or what venture funds were. I only had a clear idea of classic business in Russia. I didn't understand what rounds were, who a venture investor was, a business angel, and so on. Therefore, the information that I received during the tour significantly changed my thinking about what business can be done differently. It is possible to launch startups, attract money, grow and develop in the US market and then further in other world markets.

Just before my departure to the US, we were developing the topic of microfinance. My company was called Grand Zaim, and it was 2017.

Once my old friend and I successfully implemented a project and sold it, which is now called an "Exit." In Russia, it was called Skidka Bum. We launched it in Ulyanovsk, expanded to several cities, sold a few franchises, and made some serious money.
Then I used that money to create OxBee, a children's program that currently operates in Russia. The program allows parents to block any of the child's gadgets on any platform - iOS, Android, Linux, Windows. If a child wants to use any application, watch cartoons, play tanks, or do something else, they must answer questions from the school curriculum. If they answer correctly, parents reward them with an hour of playing tanks. After an hour, their phone is locked again, and they must solve a new task. This way, the child develops motivation.
Purpose of the Participation

My main objective for my first trip was to observe how business is conducted in America. I wanted to gain a deeper understanding of the country from someone who has been living here for a long time, and to determine if I would enjoy living here.

Before the Program

When I arrived in the US, I had no idea how venture capital business worked, or how to launch a startup. Prior to that, I had already tried to run several businesses, and I had reached a point where I felt like I had hit a certain level in Russia, at least in my hometown. I realized that I needed to do something more because I had already hit a certain financial threshold.

I would go to the office and realize that I was no longer interested in doing business. I went for training, completed several programs, including an MBA. But even after that, I felt like I needed to do something more, to continue to grow and strive for something new.
Decision to participate in the program

Regarding the program, I made the decision literally in a day because I saw the emotions and impressions of the guys who had just returned from the United States in London. In the UK, we had meetings without speakers, we simply walked around Amazon's building, and then visited various fancy restaurants in London.

And when I went on the tour to the US, I perceived it completely differently. The amount of insights I received and the quality of the information provided seriously made me reconsider many things.

I became much more attentive and open to my managers and employees, started holding one-on-one meetings. Before that, I had built a wall between myself and them, and they could only get to me once a week, and only to managing directors. Before, I wasn't interested in their personal affairs, their lives, or hobbies. Now everything has changed. I started helping my team with a lot of questions.

What inspired me the most

I really liked Starta accelerator. There I met people with whom I still communicate. Together with them, I went to Demo Day, came to their graduation. I saw the whole chain of events, how everything happens: education, Demo Day, communication with investors... I listened to the feedback from the guys, learned about how startups are built, and so on.

I really liked Zappos. I still have notes that I made during my visit to the company. That was the first time I saw how organization leaders love their employees. At that time, I did not understand at all how such an atmosphere could be created at work where employees come as if they are at home.

After the program, I moved to the US, opened my own company here, and signed a contract with China. Currently, our company owns 500 points of sale in 20 states of the country. We are currently in serious negotiations with investors who are considering our startup for financing.
What has changed in the business

I believe that the most important thing that happened was in me. I started to treat my employees more respectfully and took off the crown that I used to wear. Before, I couldn't see anyone. And after the program, I realized that I am who I am only thanks to the people I work with in the company. I helped many of them buy apartments, cars, which made me closer to them.

When I started traveling to America often, I realized that everything exists and works without me. This is only thanks to the fact that I started to trust my team. Before, I had cameras in all the rooms, and there was a security service that checked every employee. Now the security service only checks contractors and helps us check employees for a criminal record before they start working at the factories.

I started to trust my management team more. I now almost never interfere in operations, only dealing with financial issues. This allowed me to calmly leave my business in Russia and move to the United States. I know many people in Miami who lost their business in Russia when they moved. Thank God it didn't happen to me. I have been here for four years now, and I hope it will never happen.

Short conclusion

I participated in the program three times. And each time I emphasized something new for myself. When you come for the first time from Russia, you have no idea how everything works in the US. And on the program, you discover America from all sides. If you have already lived in America for a while, you perceive information completely differently. Especially when you already have your own startup and you communicate with other partners. You get completely different insights. A deeper study is already happening.

To learn more about our immersion program in Silicon Valley and get a detailed day-by-day program, follow the link below.

Malikspace Corporation.
541 Jefferson Avenue
Redwood City, CA 94063