Jonathan Maycock started out in academia, completing a Ph.D. in Maynooth University in an area of physics called Physical Optics. In particular, he concerned himself with coming up with methods to improve the image quality of digital holographic reconstructions that inherently suffer from speckle noise. In 2008 he came to Bielefeld where he took up a post-doc research position at the Cognitive Interactive Technology Excellence Cluster (CITEC). He setup and ran the Manual Intelligence Laboratory for over 8 years, investigating ways in which we can bring the incredible manual skills humans‘ take for granted to robotic hand systems. After 12 years of academia, having published close to 50 journal and conference papers, he decided to quit and pursue his dream of being an entrepreneur.
It was bitcoin, the first successful digital currency, that grabbed his attention. Bitcoin is the first digital currency to solve the issue of double spending in a trust-less network. It allows individuals to transfer value in a peer-to-peer fashion without the need for a trusted 3rd party, like a bank. In a sense, if you have a bitcoin wallet, you are your own bank! Jonathan, along with his co-founders Christof Elbrechter and Rene Tünnermann, noticed the lack of professional tools in this exciting new world of crypto-currencies and they came up with an idea to fill an important gap in the market.
Which three hashtags describe your person?
#focused #optimist #logical
Which professional success are you proud of?
Bringing our bitcoin trading terminal, leonArdo, to market and gaining enough traction to be able to close our first round of funding with leading investors!
What is your best advice to any founder in OWL?
Build a great product and focus on your customers. Don’t forget why you built your original product. There was a problem and you solved it with your product. Don’t turn that good idea into a spaghetti product that tries to do a million other things, but in the end fails to do anything useful at all.
In terms of customers, if you treat them well they will bring you more and the really good ones will actively promote you! Especially those first few enthusiastic early adopters. Look after them, but don’t let them drive the direction of your product development. Let them influence, but never dictate.
Why are you fascinated about Startups?
Getting the chance to meet and work with so many great people. Being my own boss was also a bonus. But the most satisfying thing is to be able to develop something, a new feature or service, quickly deploy it to the market and get immediate feedback. It makes you feel like you can have an impact. I love it!