42RACE: a chat with the founders
Do you enjoy running but sometimes feel as if time is holding you back? The good news is that Singapore-based start-up 42Race has made running flexible both in time and space. They have created a platform that has made it possible for runners to participate in virtual races.
The company was founded by Zhou Mi and Augustine Chua who moved to Blk71 in February 2015. They have received phenomenal support and encouragement from their mentor and investor James Tan who invited them to work in the QuestVC incubator.
“We like working here because of the culture and community. There are so many initiatives and people we can talk to. Just yesterday, there was a Facebook-organized workshop, so we can easily go down and attend all kinds of events, and the Carousell office is right next door so we can always ask them about things we are not sure about. We’ll say: hey, want to have lunch? And we’ll go down and chat!”
Zhou Mi and Augustine believe that talking openly with people is important as you never know what new insights they might offer: “For startups, people think the idea is very important and should be protected, but that’s not quite true; it’s really the execution. Always share your idea with people and talk to them about it as you never know what insights you might get. Chatting with people has shortened our route considerably rather than having to figure out everything ourselves.”
For example, the founders learned about plug-ins and tools available online instead of coding everything from scratch, and picked up a few recruitment strategies:
“At first we were excited: oh, I’m the coder, I’m the hustler! Now it’s like: okay, let’s just get things done! The important thing is to hire people who are faster, smarter, and better. As founders, we can focus on getting resources.”
The duo is actively expanding their team, and gained the following insight from their comrades at Blk71:
“Talent recruitment is an ongoing process: you must have a system. It’s not like: I want to recruit, and it’ll happen in the next 2 weeks. It’s really about making it part of your job every single day. This was a helpful point to learn.”
Curious to know more? You can explore the virtual races at www.42race.com
[Interview: 24 November 2015]