Here is the interview with Contorion. Also, have a look at the team and office photos.
Please tell us something about your Company. When was your company founded and who are the founders?
Contorion aims to disrupt the B2B industrial supply market with a lean and digital-minded omni-channel approach.
The current assortment of over 150,000 SKUs covers a wide range of product categories, from screws to power and hand tools to workwear, including the most renowned manufacturers of the industry.
With a high user-friendliness, fair prices and a professional customer service we are the one-stop-shop for professional customers, especially craftsmen and manufacturing SMEs.
Contorion was founded by Dr. Frederick Roehder, Dr. Richard Schwenke and Tobias Tschötsch in Berlin in spring 2014.
Since the go-live in August 2014, the team has grown to over 100 people and serves more than 150,000 customers.
What is your core business?
We are a specialist retailer for professional craft and industrial supplies.
How did you get to your business idea and when was your company established?
Contorion was founded in April 2014 and went live only a few months later with Contorion.de. Richard Schwenke and Frederick Roehder are old friends who both worked at McKinsey and met Tobias Tschötsch through mutual contacts at Project A Ventures. Richard and Frederick already gained a lot of experience in B2B purchasing. Especially the market for professional craft and industrial supplies appeared to be just made for a digital disruption: huge, fragmented and digitally underdeveloped.
Tobias Tschötsch completed the founding team with his entrepreneurial experience from building CityDeal/Groupon.
Are you using Venture Capital? And if so, who are your Venture Partners?
The company was founded with the support of the company builder Project A Ventures who not only invested capital but also contributed his ecommerce expertise.
In which countries/cities are you active? Are you planning to expand your venture in other countries? And if so, where?
Right now our business markets are Germany and Austria.
We decided to focus first on the development of our core markets before expanding into other markets.
Of course, we are evaluating possible other markets, but have not determined when we will enter the next ones.
Where do you see the company in five years?
In five years the B2B industrial supplies market will be a lot more digitalized and customer behavior will continue to change. We are optimistic that we will play an important role in this new market structure.
We aim to be much more integrated into the purchasing processes of our customers – both in terms of having a more established relationship with our customers as well as through offering new technological solution.
When it comes to our internal development, we want to continue to build an exceptional and successful company which attracts extraordinary talent.
Our directive is to create the best possible environment for the personal and the professional growth of our employees.
How many employees work at your company right now? Are you planning to expand?
Right now we have about 110 employees.
What is the average age of your team members ?
The average age is 29 years. Our team is composed of experienced professionals who have worked in the industry before and young talents with digital experience in the start-up scene.
The combination of these competences is what makes us successful.
What kind of attitude should new employees have to have in order to work at your company?
New employees should bring three things: They should be ambitious, they should bring a lot of energy and they should be down to earth and respectful to fit in our team.
Why is it fun to work at your company? Do you offer any employee benefits?
Although we had a really strong growth in the last two years we tried to keep a family like working atmosphere.
A strong team spirit and flat hierarchies, in which everybody is able to contribute to the company’s success, are the main reasons why it is fun to work at Contorion.
Of course we also offer drinks, fruits, table soccer, a PlayStation, team events and we have a lot of fun together.
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