Jared Jesner, CEO & Founder, WeSwap speaks to Business Matters about why he wished he’d spent more money on building a beautiful product before beginning an aggressive marketing campaign and his admiration for Jack Ma founder of Alibaba.
What do you currently do?
As the CEO and Founder of WeSwap I am responsible for setting strategic direction and key targets for the business, ensuring the team have sufficient capital to deliver the strategy and generally removing any blockers that are preventing the business from achieving its results. WeSwap is a peer-to-peer platform which allows travellers all over the world to swap currency with each other with no hidden costs.
What was the inspiration behind your business?
When I was working at Shell we travelled frequently for business, having to constantly exchange currency. One trip I was standing in Heathrow airport exchanging currency at a bureau and I could see my colleagues walking towards a completely different bureau to exchange the opposite currency. That was my ‘eureka moment’ – I thought it was ridiculous and that we should just be swapping currency directly with each other.
What defines your way of doing business?
Our internal values are the best representation of who we are at WeSwap; Love the Customer, Be Transparent, Own the Task, and Do What It Takes. These are fundamental principles we follow across all areas which define how we do business.
Who do you admire?
Jack Ma, founder and CEO of the Alibab Group. He is an incredible philanthropist who treats his competitors as friends to learn from. I see him to be a good type of capitalist that will leave the world in a better place.
Looking back is there anything you’d do differently?
Spend more money on building a beautiful product before aggressive growth marketing. Even when investors are demanding instant growth try to invest as much as possible into product and the growth will follow.
What advice would you give someone just starting out
It’s a long and tough journey. Tenacity wins.