Steven Speldewinde and Eric Zirgulis are the Co-Founders of FishTwits.com. Steve (a law graduate from Australia) and Eric (a history graduate from California) met whilst pursuing Masters Degrees in Entrepreneurship at Lund University in Sweden. A short time into their Masters degree a discussion of heading to the Swedish lakes in pursuit of the enormous Pike contained within led them to the realization that they were both passionate fishermen and the idea to start a company in which they could pursue this passion was born. When they met Dave Sherohman a talented web developer, Eric and Steve’s dream of creating an online hub for recreational and sports fishermen to find and share the best fishing content on the web was born.
What are you working on right now?
We are currently working hard on building the user base for http://fishtwits.com. Our aim is to bring our users a real-time feed of the most up to date fishing information for the species, techniques and locations they are interested in. To do this we are aiming for a user base of 10,000 users within the next six months. We are releasing new features weekly and are also in the process of negotiating to build a platform upon which people with other niche interests can build there own service.
3 trends that excite you?
Trends that excite us at the moment are the expansion of geo-location services in conjunction with real-time information throughout the web. We believe that this has the potential to bring extremely powerful and interesting services to the public. As fishermen, our mouths water at the prospect of being able to obtain real-time information on fishing conditions at our current location, not only weather and tide information but also what lures are working or what the current fly hatch is.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Studying a Masters of Entrepreneurship with 35 creative and motivated people from around the world really brings in to sharp relief the difference between having ideas and bringing them to life! Between us we had 100s of ideas some good, some great and some unbelievably appalling. Of those ideas only a very few have come to fruition. The difference that Eric and I found between and idea and an idea that can be brought to life is passion. If you are passionate about an idea then you can put in the hard work, overcome the myriad of challenges and disappointments that can stand in your way and have fun throughout.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced since launching FishTwits.com?
The FishTwits team is made up of two Americans (Eric and Dave) and an Australian (Steve), we met in Sweden and registered our company in the UK. The biggest challenge we have faced is now running a small company from all over the world. This means that we are unable to see each other face to face once a day, once a week or even once a month.
On the other hand, I believe the very international nature of our company has been an advantage. Rather than being restricted to meeting customers and business partners in a single country we have been able to extend our reach across continents. Our aim is to make FishTwits.com a truly worldwide hub for fishermen.
What’s the best fish you have ever caught?
Mine was the first Largemouth Bass fishing in South Korea. You can read about it here.
Catching a mackerel with my bare hands out whilst kayak fishing. You can read about it here.