From side project to $1M app development company


I grew up in Kiev, Ukraine. I went to the high school there, studied desktop publishment and multimedia. When I was younger I was into the computers, internet, video games. Somehow I tried programming. What I really loved about it is that you always have a task. It is well-defined and you know when it’s done. I think I was influenced by friends and also by the fact that there are opportunities for programmers in other countries. So I started looking for jobs. Applied to some. Changed some until I got better and better at programming. And then finally in 2014 I got an offer from a German company and I was able to move here as a software developer. The first time I got the idea of creating an app for Jira, it was back then when I was still in Kiev and was preparing to move to Berlin. And we had a problem in the way we collaborated with our counterparts in Switzerland and I was looking for a solution for this problem. Naturally I checked the Atlassian Marketplace and surprisingly found none. So I thought I could maybe create one. So when creating an app everything is well documented and what helped me personally was the developer community where all those questions they were already asked and they were already answered by other developers with more experience. The first version of that app was solving our specific problem. It worked surprisingly well. But then I thought maybe there are more teams that could benefit from this. So I followed the process of publishing the app. It wasn’t right away that I had the idea that I could make some money on the Atlassian Marketplace with this app. It only occurred to me after my first paycheck 6 months down the road. It was quite exciting. Yet, even back then I think I didn’t really really think that it could grow into something serious. With the Atlassian Marketplace, I had all the tools necessary to talk to my customers. The customers started providing me some real good feedback and I listened and I implemented the fixes. With the Atlassian Marketplace I am able to focus on what I do best and not to spend my time on what I am weak at. As a developer you just have to let Atlassian do the heavy lifting for you in marketing and bringing more customers to your apps. All the exposure is done for you. You just do what you do best. So I got my settlement permit and it was on the very same day when I decided to quit my job. Here I am after I made the switch and decided to incorporate this thing. I finally brought a partner to Lizard Brain. Luckily, he’s a better developer than I am. He was able to switch to help me full time as well. After I started doing apps for the Atlassian Marketplace full time, my definition of work changed. And now that I work on my own terms, I am free to explore the city. I am free to travel and to live the lifestyle that I like. Business on the Atlassian Marketplace helps you retain your freedom with time, because time is the more precious resource we have.

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