In order to be a successful leader in technology, you have to treat it like fashion
Riga, Latvia – Established in February 1998, scanservice a.s. is the largest document digitization company in the Czech Republic. Since its establishment, scanservice has been the leader in providing document processing services through outsourcing, as well as designing customized document management solutions for leading Czech and international companies, including state and local governments. scanservice has been listed in the prestigious “Czech Top 100” business index since 2003, taking 30th place in 2015.
Evita: What made you decide to become an entrepreneur?
Renata: I did not study any technical subject at an academic level. But my engagement with the technology field happened by a chance when I started to work for Eastman Kodak (for the Czech and Polish market it was a joint venture Kodak Eastbridge) about 25 years ago. They were looking for a sales person, so it happened to be my first job — partly business, but partly technical oriented position.
Together with another colleague, who is now both my friend and business partner, we decided to educate ourselves by attending any kind of exhibitions, workshops, and conferences. We travelled around the world as much as possible, because self-education at that time was not that easy as nowadays, as we did not have access to any online resources.
I came up with an idea to establish a company to focus on services and business process outsourcing. We did not have any investments to establish our own company, so I made a deal with the majority owner of joint venture Kodak Eastbridge to establish scanservice. He gave me 10 % and kept the majority of 90 % to himself because of investments. We continued like this for a couple of years, and then — about 12 years ago — I made management buyout of that company together with my friend.
Еvita: Even though you owned only 10 % of the business, have you been the CEO since the start?
Renata: Yes, I’ve been the CEO, the majority shareholder was more oriented to retail business and trusted me to focus on the technology business. He allowed me to go and play my game for a couple of years and he would wait to see what will happen.
Evita: You started your company already 20 years ago, and you have reached the major heights during this time. You are the owner and CEO of a large company, a leader in the Czech market in your field. But how did the company grow?
Renata: First of all, it is a project-oriented business. Every or every second year we get a new important client, and it helps us to increase our turnover and earnings.
The second reason for our successful growth is our employees. Some of our people started working with us during the joint venture — we do have some very long-term employees. We are also devoted to developing our people and their skills, educating them and offering career growth.
Read the whole interview here.
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