Been there….doing this

Week 1

My version of the Aston Martin..3 speeds and my horsepower

This is my leap in the blogsphere and one that I have been thinking about for a while but for one reason or another just could never push myself to take the first step, but with where I am at right now professionally, physically, mentally and emotionally it seemed like the perfect time to add another weekly task to my already tight schedule, but have found this to be less of a task, but more a journal of my/Virgla journey. As with any venture you head down…a goal should be established and my goal of sharing this with the world is nothing more than reminding me of the journey…but if along the way it helps the next young entrepreneur, small business man or woman or individual looking at finding where they fit…then it will only bring more validation to the journey I am on.

The blog will evolve and is meant to be a snapshot into the progressions of building a technology startup, but I never felt until some proper validation could happen, my words would not have the meaning, so the journey starts in the middle versus the beginning. I will also include some behind the scenes aspects of doing this in a foreign country where meetings don’t happen in coffee shops but a visit to the coffee shop takes on a different meaning. So without further ado…lets get this blog started.

My Braveheart moment

Starting a startup in this day and age feels more like living on an isolated island, and in the distance you see the islands you want to get to but with a small team how can you possibly swim to each of them, and do this quickly without drowning, so you accomplish the ultimate goal of disrupting an industry to bring value to the people and achieve your goal.

Well on April 11, 2016 our company saw the islands get much closer, but more importantly we had the Braveheart moment happen when starting our journey in our Accelerator Program Startupbootcamp #sbcSmartCity, no more were we alone on the island but instead we now have support next to and behind us to help push us to those islands faster and more focused…not to mention literally…one of the co founders of the program looks very similar to Sir William Wallace.

Need I say more!

But it’s good to ask what is an accelerator?

A lot of people have asked me what is an Accelerator, and prior to arriving my standard answer was…its meant to move you faster…imagine accomplishing in 3 months what would normally take 1 year or possibly more. Well I can now tell you its even more intense, but when you have this support system next to you and behind you the intensity turns into energy, drive and focus. Each day literally feels like 5, missing 1 day feels like coming back from vacation and needing another week to get into the groove, but now instead of having a week to catch up you have 5 minutes. But its not just about time, in one week we have been orientated to what the next three months will be like, educated on areas that every startup thinks they thought of prior or figured out…only to find out you really have not thought it all the way through, challenged on their idea to help assure that focus exists…which could lead to a pivot (had to include this word), attend a global conference from an industry leader opening the door for meeting other amazing people with similar stories, free access to their software that is meant for large corporations and making an introduction to that one potential client that could change the landscape for your startup and bring you to a global audience (just not yet @jimelup), meet with multiple mentors (experts in different segments) that are here to offer their time for free, share their expertise, pull from their experience, open doors to their network, bring you to their organiztions to share your vision to help move the dial a bit further or to be the sounding board to provide you with that fresh set of eyes to tackle a problem or idea, working with 10 other like minded companies on the same journey and last but definitely not least strengthen the bond of our team by pushing each of us to new places, comfort zones and respect for what it is we are all working day and night to accomplish.

Our new offices
The others on the journey
Team so far….we are hiring!

Well this is just a snapshot of what last week felt like and in the upcoming blogs I will dive a bit more in different aspects mentioned above because it will help tell the story a bit more in depth.

But it’s not just all work and no personal life..its just that the personal part starts to show in a different way and take on a different form. So to finish out my first blog thought I would share some quick thoughts and photos from the past week and where we will be spending the next 3 months and possibly beyond…as we set out to change the way people interact with the brands they love.

Song of the week: What do you mean…Justin Bieber (Inside Joke)

Cultural Tip: In the Netherlands when greeting a woman you don’t kiss on the left side and then the right side, you actually kiss on the left, then the right and then the left..not sure if it matters which side you start but its three and not two.

Key Learning: Riding your bike to and from work is amazing way to start and finish your day…but not easy in a headwind with only one gear (ha ha Alexandr Panek)

Dutch Lunches: Actually don’t make you want to come back to your desk and take a nap, but fill the void needed and provide the energy to keep moving fast. (sorry Sal, actually enjoy lunch here)

Photos of the week:

Traffic in Amsterdam!
Parking Problems in Amsterdam

But all of the above come with sacrifices…but what drives me to reach my ultimate goal is all done for these three!!

My greatest Startup…so far, but the one that will not involve an exit.

I am Bob, the CEO and co-founder of Virgla. I ran and sold a publishing business in the US and now in the process of building the next generation of brand-user engagement platform. You can tweet me @virgla_robert or email me at’ → opportunity for people to connect with you don’t miss it