Founder Profile: Aish Fenton, Co-founder of vWorkApp2 min read

Discover who’s who in the tech startup industry with Founders Network Founder Profiles. Each profile covers one of our founders, their startup vision, achievements and current focus. In addition, they share key insights about their most valuable lessons learned, greatest mentors and tips for staying motivated.

Aish Fenton, Founder of vWorkApp

Aish Fenton, Co-founder of vWorkApp

Name:
Aish Fenton

Member Cohort:
February 2012

Location:
San Francisco via. New Zealand

Education:
University of Auckland
M.Sc, Computer Science
BMus, Music

Prior Experience:

  • CTO, VisFleet
  • Product Manager, iVistra Technology
  • Tech Manager, DataCom

Current Startup:
vWorkApp

Mission:
Building the world’s easiest to use web-based dispatch software.

Milestones:

  • Spun out from parent company 2 years ago.
  • Raised funding from key investor Sam Morgan.
  • Opened US office in San Francisco.
  • Hired Sales and Marketing teams.
  • Achieved product market fit with Delivery, Contracting and Transportation segments.

Lessons Learned:
“There are two major lessons learned so far with launching vWorkApp. The first is that you need the right people at the right time. When we first spun out from our parent company we had 20 staff, many of whom were not used to working in a tech startup environment. In retrospect, it would have been better to start with a small dedicated and uber flexible team and grown from there. The other major lesson is the importance of market segmentation in the US high technology market. Coming from a country of 4 million people, if you say you specialize in a niche market segment you can ring up everyone in one afternoon. The US market is so much bigger and identifying key segments and finding product market fit is essential.”

Staying Motivated:
“Of course there are many ups and downs in a startup. I have stayed motivated through the support of my mentors and advisors. Being able to tap into their advice and use them as a sounding board has been essential.”

Biggest Mentor:
Sam Morgan is a great mentor and his experience has really helped us on our journey. Sam originally founded TradeMe, New Zealand’s largest online auction site, which sold in 2006 for over NZ$750 million. Many times when we are struggling with some aspect of launching our startup Sam’s been able to put the issue in perspective. With so much vying for our attention it’s really helped to have that prior experience to draw on. That is huge. The other aspect of Sam’s mentorship that’s really helped us is his patience. He’s encouraged us to make the right decisions for for the medium to long-term. That’s really paying off now.”

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