espa-en interviewing the CEO of Softweb



Mr. Johh Belegrinis from met the CEO of Softweb, Mr. Charalampos Dimitrakopoulos, in order to learn the success story of the company and its plans to penetrate new markets. Mr. Dimitrakopoulos states the components for developing a successful start-up company in a difficult economic period, giving young people the vision to get involved with business. In addition, he mentions that in the demanding role of a CEO, it is important to delegate responsibilities to employees resulting in balancing the personal and professional life. For this reason, Mr. Dimitrakopoulos believes that regarding the HR practices, the business man should trust his own intuition. Finally, the CEO of Softweb addresses questions that concern modern businesses operating in the highly competitive I.T. sector.


J.B: You started your business about 11 years ago. What do you remember from that period before the economic crisis? What are the differences starting a company then and now?

C.D: In our case there were many factors that could jeopardise the possibilities of success. The fact that we did not have any funds available, our minimum experience, the competition that already existed and of course that the market was already facing the economic crisis. Despite the difficulties, we had ambitious vision and strong will to make the difference in I.T. sector. Our only pros were our young age -we were about 23 years old- and our knowledge. We also believed that we could take advantage of the pressure that economic crisis would put on companies that already had market share. Thus, there could be opportunities for start-up companies to evolve. This hypothesis was confirmed. So we can conclude that the difficulties to start a company then were greater than today. On the other hand, a company that was established during the crisis, like Softweb, had the opportunity to capitalize on the difficult circumstances of the recent years.


J.B: Please inform us about your company profile.

C.D: In Softweb we design and develop B2B, B2C and B2E business software and custom web and mobile solution. Through the range of our services and products, we cover the modern digital needs of leading and emerging businesses active in various fields of the economy, such as industry, service providers, commerce, automotive industry, fashion, construction companies, organizations, public sector, education e.t.c..

During the 11 years of our operation, we have implemented multiple web projects such as websites, portals and e-shops as well as iOS and Android mobile applications, while we offer the corresponding annual support services. Furthermore, we have developed e-commerce and m-commerce tools that both contribute to the overall corporate profile of our customers, maximizing their sales while reducing operational costs.


J.B:  How many hours does a CEO work?

C.D: It’ s hard for me to determine the exact number of working hours, because I live with the CEO role throughout the day. Despite the continuous and demanding needs of this role, I do have the opportunity to maintain a balance between my personal and professional life thanks to the strong team we have created. I feel safe to grant my immediate colleagues responsibilities, expecting from them proposals and solutions for various company issues. The phrase “win-win” can describe exactly the way we work in Softweb.


J.B: What is the secret, if there is one, for a company to stand out in a highly competitive environment?

C.D: In my opinion, the secret for a modern company to stand out is to be informed, to be ahead of market trends and to constantly differentiate. Our industry is highly competitive and is growing rapidly. Therefore, a company must be flexible and able to meet the needs of modern businesses taking advantage of every new technological trend in order to succeed. At Softweb we are constantly investing in technological R&D, the quality of human resources, new product development and higher level of services to ensure our market leadership.


J.B: If you were hiring now, what would be the new employee characteristics you would be searching for?

C.D: The Softweb team's growth rate is relatively high every year. In order to continuously optimize the quality of our services, we invest in enhancing our human resources. Specifically, the number of company executives is growing, on average, by about 20% per year.

Personally, when selecting an employee I prioritize his/her personality. Then, I consider his/her skills, experience and finally his/her diplomas. It is important that every new colleagues bonds with the rest of the team. I am determined about a candidate when I see in him/her the will to succeed and his/her professional.


J.B: What are your future plans about Softweb?

C.D: Softweb now has the business structure and know-how to take advantage of the "post-crisis" market momentum, setting high goals for the future. Both the financial status of the company and its experienced human resources provide the necessary tools to successfully execute our ambitious plan.

Our future plans include expanding our product range aiming in strengthening relationships between customers and their suppliers and vice versa.

I will give you an exclusive, after two (2) years of presence in the Cyprus market through partners, soon our company will have a physical presence with its own offices enhancing its extroversion.