This week, I had the honor, as President of Global Kinetics, to participate with and speak at the 2015 Poland Day in Silicon Valley event. This is an annual symposium where the US-Polish Trade Council (www.usptc.org) hosts “a networking event aimed at enhancing collaboration between science and business in the context of cross-regional cooperation between Poland and the United States.” I had the opportunity to meet with many exciting and innovative people and companies visiting from Poland. There was such a high degree of innovation among this group and the energy was quite tangible.
Throughout the three-day event, local Silicon Valley business leaders shared their expertise with the attending Polish companies about how to establish or expand operations, secure customer or partner channels, raise capital, manage intellectual property and other legal matters, and more.
Some lessons that I came away with were that there are specific things that are universally needed by these Polish companies to help them accelerate their time to market in the US. Specifically, as they enter the US marketplace, they need to be cognizant of the various cultural differences which translate into different approaches to conducting business. Additionally, while many of these companies are already locally successful in Poland, there remain challenges of access and know-how when it comes to translating this local success to success abroad (in the US). These matters, of course, are in addition to understanding the different legal/regulatory, financial and social/interpersonal aspects of doing business in the US vs. Poland.
I also ascertained that Polish companies have fantastic technical capabilities, specifically around code and highly quantitative skills, that can be leveraged at far more competitive rates than locally in the US markets. The opportunity for US companies to tap into this vast talent pool is tremendous. As we struggle to find, obtain and retain such skills locally, especially as we continue to see shortages in graduation rates of the STEM disciplines, knowing that cost efficient ways to obtain such skills via collaboration with Polish companies with great amounts of such skills, is critical.
To a large extent, the mission of the USPTC centers on fostering such relationships between US companies in need of such skills with Polish companies who can provide them at highly competitive rates. And, I should not forget to mention that the language skills (specifically English) of everyone I met were great. Having worked with offshore companies for several years, I can see how Poland’s future as a partner and collaborator in these technological areas looks bright.
Global Kinetics (www.globalkinetics.com) serves as a corporate advisor and market development accelerator partner to early-to-mid stage clients seeking to establish operations or expand within the U.S. marketplace. The services provided include commercial introductions, investor introductions, marketing/public relations, social media/content marketing, user experience/design, strategy/market positioning, sales processes/strategies, formation of industry advisory boards and interim executive services.
With so many amazing Polish companies seeking to bring their solutions and skills to the US, we at Global Kinetics are excited by our inaugural participation at Poland Day in Silicon Valley 2015 and hope to continue our involvement and partnership with the USPTC into 2016 and beyond.