Helena Storsten - Benzi - Reading Revolution
Helena Storsten - Benzi - Reading Revolution
The idea started when Ida and I was given the task to create a business plan in the course Entrepreneurship at Umeå University. We pitched the idea for the class and got great feedback and continued to analyze the potential and the interest from the publishers. Benzi Revolution AB was initiated in January 2014, when the programmers Sameh and Jean-Paul joined the team. Benzi aims to digitalizing quality reading of books, magazines and newspapers by monthly subscriptions.
I just graduated from Lund University, with an MSc in International Marketing and Brand Management. I enjoy travelling, concerts and cultures. Benzi mean “thin book” in Chinese, a word I learned while studying Mandarin in Shanghai. Besides my studies I worked at Vattenfall Kundservice AB and Lensway AB and in several student organizations, such as Lundakarnevalen 2014, quality manager for my program and a student ambassador for Umeå University.
June will be occupied with research and call, in order to set up meetings with publishers and create the logotype. We will also be present on social media, follow our journey on Instagram: benzirevolution. During July, we will continue working on our application and during August we strive to launch the application to our beta users.
Our goal is to close agreements with publishers, launch our new website and start beta testing when the period is over, and of course have great fun along the way!
Helena Storsten - Benzi - Reading Revolution #2
Since I started the Leap Frog project I have been working on redesigning our business model and parts of our business idea. I have redesigned our logotype and corporate colours, created a product folder and participated in Båstad entrepreneurship week for two days, attending seminars and met publishers. During the past week I have been in Umeå and worked together with the rest of the team.
Due to the summer vacation, it’s been harder to reach publishers than I anticipated. Therefore, I’ve set up a contact-list of people from different magazines, which will be contacted in August. Since coding in HTML and CSS is new to me, it took a lot more time and it was trickier than I first thought. But it was great fun to learn more about it and we’re currently almost done with the website.
My focus for the upcoming weeks is to work with the usability of the application, how it should be designed and later on used in a simplistic way. It has to be simple to use and easy to understand, without being perceived as boring. It is according to my original plan, but since we changed the business model we have to adjust a bit.
Helena Storsten - Benzi Reading Revolution # 3
The Leapfrogs period has been quick, fun and challenging. It’s been fun to drive your own project, without focusing on school assignment or other employments. With the leap frog scholarship, I managed take my time to focus on our initial business idea and realize it had to be changed. We would not be where we are today without this scholarship, so warmest thank you for believing in Benzi and me!
Lets start with the most enjoyable! I have had the opportunity to dig in to research in business models and the publishing industry. I’ve learned a lot about designing sketches for mobile applications and the basics of HTML and CSS to set up a website. I’ve done research in the area and got feedback from focus groups.
The hardest has been the delays in terms of internal and external communication. That affected my work and delayed my initial plan.
I have to say partly on the first question. We planned to be closer a finished application at this stage, but since some things had to be delayed, other tasks had to be prioritized. However, we got some interesting things upcoming, which I cannot announce yet. So my answer to the second question is yes, Benzi will continue to develop and be released during the fall.
Internal communication if you are a team. So what I’ve learnt is to be clearer in my communications in order to not create misunderstandings. Benzi is located in two cities, Lund in the south and Umeå in the north. Further, our team is based on five people with various backgrounds and nationalities. It’s easier to misunderstand each other when you are not present in the same city.
Tips for new entrepreneurs:
Dare to give it a try! I cannot believe how my university course went from a mandatory written assignment and a prezi-presentation to an actual company and nominations in different competitions. Also, dare to tell your friends and family about your idea to receive their thoughts and feedback, instead of hiding it to yourself. Lastly, have great fun during the time!