Business clubs for Russian-speaking entrepreneurs are created in Poland

Since last year, I have been hearing more and more about conducting further events in Russian for businessmen in Poland. I decided to ask the founder of one of such clubs in Warsaw why he does it and who comes to these meetings.

Infinity Business Club started operating in December 2018. At that time, the first IBC meeting for Russian-speaking entrepreneurs was held in Warsaw, which was attended by about 60 people. The next meeting for businessmen took place in February 2019. However, the biggest event today is the Infinity Business Forum in Warsaw, which took place in June this year. During the meeting, some of the greatest businessmen of Ukraine spoke, and over 500 people came to listen to them.

The founders of the Infinity Business Club community are Ivan Hnatkiv, Taras Yavorskyy and Oleksii Ponomarenko. I met for an interview with Ivan, a Ukrainian who came up with the idea of ​​creating IBC.

My name is Ivan, I am 26 years old, I have lived in Poland for 2.5 years, I moved from Zaporozhye. I am an entrepreneur, I deal with personnel outsourcing, my company employs about 100 people. Despite the creation of IBC, I do not give up doing business and continue to develop it.

Why did you decide to create a community for Ukrainian and Russian businessmen in Poland?

In Ukraine, I was a member of various business clubs, meeting other entrepreneurs helped me build my own business. After moving to Poland, I was convinced that I would also find many business clubs here. I basically found it. I was at BNI, Networking Business Club and Tigers Club meetings. However, after some time I realized that the format of such meetings in Ukraine was more interesting and beneficial for me.

In addition, I wanted to get into the environment of entrepreneurs like me who moved to Poland from another country, as a result of which they experience the same difficulties. This is how the idea of ​​creating Infinity Business Club was born.

What does IBC offer today?

In Poland there are many Ukrainian and Russian speaking foreigners who want to develop. Some of them are already working and want to improve their skills, gain new knowledge to achieve even greater success. Some of our immigrants are just starting their business activity in Poland. Our mission is to unite all those who want to develop and work on themselves.

We now have this concept, we offer three options:

  • Purchase of a start-up Package - membership in the IBC community for aspiring entrepreneurs, includes admission to a limited number of meetings, price $ 500 / year.
  • Premium package - membership in the IBC for already operating businessmen, includes a pass to all meetings, including large forums, closed meetings, etc. The price is 1000 USD / year.
  • Without purchasing IBC membership - participation in open meetings (brunches, yoga, running, business forums). The price varies depending on the event. For example, yoga and running are free. Business brunch with an expert performance can cost from 50 to 100 PLN.

In other words, has IBC already become a source of income for you?

At this point it is rather a hobby. Of course, we are now building a business model, but at the beginning the project was made as a romantic desire to create a platform where people, including myself, can find a favorable environment, make contacts.

The idea is gradually transformed into a business project. In June, we hosted a 500-person forum, invited the most outstanding speakers from Ukraine, which raised the level of expectations and requirements of participants regarding our events. It was the largest event in Eastern Europe organized for Russian-speaking entrepreneurs.

We raised the bar for ourselves and also for other communities that organize similar events for Ukrainian businessmen in Poland.

A person who wants to start a business but does not know how - can he ask you questions?

We do not provide consulting services. However, I will say this: for example, you come to Poland, you want to start a business, you are looking for an accountant, lawyer, contractors, you need to understand how to pay taxes - you have a million questions. Where can you find the answers? You can go to a consulting company, pay a lot of money and they will do everything. Or you can come to our meeting and ask participants who already run companies here, contact a trusted accountant, lawyer, etc. I give an example to show how the right environment can help find answers.

Describe the profile of the person for whom participation in IBC will be most beneficial?

These are people who are interested in business, run a business, want to develop it, increase their staff. And also those who are just thinking about creating their own company and need motivation.

We also plan to reach Polish entrepreneurs. In the near future, we will invite Polish-speaking and English-speaking speakers to the events. We want to bring together entrepreneurs from various countries who come to Poland and do business here.

On June 8, you organized the Infinity Business Forum, which gathered 500 listeners, and one of the most famous Ukrainian businessmen, Yevhen Chernyak, became the main speaker. In 2015, Forbes estimated the value of its vessels at $ 325 million. How did you manage to get him interested in performing on the forum, after all it was your first important event?

We have Oleksiia Ponomarenko in the team, he had a dialogue with him. I cannot disclose all the details of the negotiations, but I can say that this dialogue has been going on for a long time. Evgeniy Chernyak finally confirmed his participation only at the beginning of April, which means we organized this event in less than two months. I think our persistence convinced him.

How do you choose speakers?

Practitioners with an international business who have experience of doing business on a foreign market are the priority. We place more emphasis not on the educational part, but rather on the practical one.

Among the forum participants were more active businessmen or those who are just planning to start a business?

According to our study, the ratio of active and novice businessmen was around 60 percent. up to 40 percent Some came from Kraków, Poznań, Wrocław and Gdańsk. There were participants from other countries - Great Britain, Italy and even Russia. For us it was something amazing.

When do you plan to organize another forum?

We are planning for the end of spring. We have preliminary agreements with Andriy Fedoriv , Victoria Tigipko and we are in talks with several other speakers. I know for sure that they will be top-class businessmen, and most importantly, practitioners.

What is the most valuable thing you learned during the forum?

First of all, I learned how to organize such a large event in less than two months.

Secondly, I realized that in fact all entrepreneurs, millionaires, have several things in common. The first is a huge amount of energy. The mind is important, but above all energy. The second common feature is endless perseverance. And the third is the habit of acting more and thinking less.

Is your goal to make IBC the main source of income?

I have the psychology of a serial entrepreneur. I want to run several projects at once. Yes, I would like IBC to be one of my main projects, but not the only one.

Last question: what do you think about people who do business because they teach others to do business?

I know for sure that today all knowledge is open and available to the public. The task of an info-businessman is to pack this knowledge and squeeze out the most important information. People who pay for it usually want to save time. Is this beneficial information another question?

Of course, it's much easier said than done. However, teaching skills are also a great value. Among the business info there are very good examples that show great results.

Business clubs for Russian-speaking entrepreneurs are created in Poland


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