Member of the Seedcamp Advisory Board present at Venture Connect on 3rd June

Entrepreneurs have until 22 May to submit their projects


Bucharest, 11th May, 2015: Venture Connect, the leading pitching and networking event in Romania, announces a new speaker invited for the 11th event organized on 3 June in ASE’s Aula Magna, Bucharest. Started in 2010, Venture Connect has welcomed over the last four years more than 400 projects and businesses from the CEE region and the US, with entrepreneurs having benefited from various special mentoring sessions to dedicated meetings with potential investors and business mentors. For the following edition, entrepreneurs can submit their projects until the extended deadline of 22 May 2015 on the event website.


For the first time in Romania, Venture Connect welcomes for its upcoming pitching session Tina Baker, co-founder of JAG Shaw Baker and member of the Seedcamp Advisory Board. With over 20 years of experience representing venture capital funds and emerging technology companies  with respect to international financings, exits and commercial transactions, Tina Baker will discuss with Venture Connect’s pitching start-ups and participants key issues regarding “How to make your company attractive to foreign investors


Tina Baker is both a US (New York State Bar) and English qualified attorney, and was formerly the chair of Brown Rudnick LLP’s European Emerging Technologies and Venture Capital Practice. She was “Highly Commended” in the category of Best Startup Advisor/Mentor of the Year at the Europas (the European Startup Awards) and is ranked as a leading individual in the 2015 edition of Chambers UK for Private Equity and Venture Capital Investments, the 2014 edition of Legal 500 for Venture Capital and listed in Thomson Reuters’ UK Super Lawyers publication 2013.


“In the last couple of years, European start-ups have found their call, with more and more valuable businesses growing each year and a more mature and dynamic ecosystem. This growth is determined by dedicated initiatives such as Venture Connect or Seedcamp which lay the foundations of a healthy and educated entrepreneurial class, while also pushing for a stronger connection with a wider investors’ community, both business-angels and VCs. I look forward to networking and discussing possibilities of growth and development with Romanian companies and share know-how and experience with Venture Connect”, mentioned Tina Baker, co-founder of JAG Shaw Baker and member of the Seedcamp Advisory Board.


As with previous sessions, Venture Connect includes two pitching sessions: the first part shall be dedicated to students and early-stage companies in search of seed investment, and the second part shall be dedicated to more mature companies in search of more substantial investments. Over 40 business angels, VCs and business mentors are expected to attend the 3 June session.


Entrepreneurs can submit their projects until 22 May on the event website. The entire event agenda as well as the selected pitching projects will be available on 27th May. The 11th edition of Venture Connect will take place in partnership with ASE Startup, the Business Incubator of the Bucharest University of Economic Studies and with the support of Biris Goran law firm. The event organizer is Govnet.


Recommended taglines: Venture Connect, entrepreneurs, start-ups, pitching,

Press contact:


Alexandra Pahomi – prSTEPS
[email protected] | 0729.003.956

Venture Connect: 10 pitching companies

Just two weeks from now, on 7th July, at Connect HUB (www.connecthub.rowe welcome you to the ninth edition of VentureConnect. Carrying on the model of the previous editions, the event will have two pitching sessions: a growth session — for more mature companies and one dedicated to early-stage start-ups.

We wish all our pitchers the best of luck.


Mondo Taxi

Mondo Taxi is a free smartphone app that allows anyone to order a licensed taxi or hire car in seconds in the following cities: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Melbourne & Sidney, Australia, Stockholm, Sweden.

The app is built on very scalable and advanced technology and is among the best in the industry.  Some of the unique points are: Orders (you send the order to nearby taxis, not to one driver at a time), Choose drivers (the drivers “send offers” for you to choose from, based on time, distance and driver ratings from other users), Interactive (follow the taxi on the map as it approaches you), Messaging (chat with the driver via in-app chat messaging system; Call him from the app if you need to), Pre-booking (order a taxi in advance up to 48 hours (available soon), Card payments (pay for your trip with a debit or credit card, fast and simple (available soon).


White Image

White Image is a full-service agency specializing in email marketing. Launched in 2003, White Image helps companies in various fields of activity with the purpose to create relevant messages via email and SMS, giving them tools and tactics of data analytics and marketing automation.


Cinema Scheduler 

In just a few seconds, Cinema Scheduler generates daily or weekly film schedules in agreement with all cinema and distributor constraints. Advanced forecasting and scheduling algorithm is a critical input, but Cinema Scheduler’s role doesn’t end there. We work closely with our clients to ensure that what we can learn from their business processes is appropriately merged with our overall strategic development process. Also, Share Dimension provides a Care Plan offering customers the easy way to stay up-to-date with new features and keep their system operational. Share Dimension’s care plan will provide all major and minor software upgrades and will guarantee unlimited expert support as well as access to our knowledge base to keep your system operating efficiently.


Smart Bill

Smart Bill is Romania’s no. 1 invoicing software since 2007, serving at the moment around 23000 customers. Smart Bill is available as desktop solution requiring a license key, as well as a cloud solution requiring subscription. As of 2010, the company entered the inventory management solutions market with Smart Bill Inventory Management.

Smart Bill is used to issue about 200.000 documents per month, and to invoice over 1 billion Euros per year. This service manages the entire invoicing process: invoice issue, delivery and storage.



Lokko is a mobile application which provides courier delivery on the day of the ordering, eliminating a number of indirect costs. Lokko provides a real-time map tracking, proof of delivery signatures and pictures and a rating system to provide the best assessment of the service. The application can be downloaded on iOS and Android.



Fittter is the perfect solution for fitness studios that would like to offer their customers specialized guidance through a mobile app. All the best-practices from personal trainers, along with the tracking and documenting benefits are now at the fingertips of every fitness enthusiast that trains in the gym. Countless training plans backed by detailed equipment usage guides and personalized profiles make fittter the best companion in the workout studio.

Fittter is a white-label concept marketed as a SaaS (software as a service, cloud-based solution) for workout studios. In exchange of a membership fee (subscription) they get access to the mobile application (iOS & Android) which they easily make available to their clients and to a customized dashboard where they manage the accounts, customer relationship and interactions. No additional hardware or software infrastructure, investment or technical knowledge is necessary.



Pocketo is a bluetooth and WiFi development board that makes it easy to prototype and develop Internet connected devices without using physical components like sensors, buttons, leds etc. Pocketo comes with a mobile application that emulates all the components you need and also offers all the sensors you have on your smartphone. When you’re done, the physical components fall right into place with your code, no adjustment needed. What you get: a development board that can be controlled over bluetooth and wifi empowered by a mobile application.



Rewordly is intellectual tracking to turn your reading and writing online, across all streams, into a single personal library and quantifed digital magazine of you or your team. We allow users to centralize and capitalize on their own content empire, and show what they know, in a sleek and versatile web 2.0 way. For thoughtful and passionate individuals and teams, Rewordly is your knowledge management and humanized branding solution. If Linkedin is what you do, Rewordly is what you know. “



Clepsisoft is a provider of computer security testing, called Penetration Testing (PenTesting). PenTesting Service is testing a computer infrastructure (servers, software, databases, access policies, security policies, highlighting vulnerabilities) from the perspective of an attacker (so-called “hacker”).


Clubbing Tribe

With Clubbing Tribe you can meet the hottest clubbing people and parties anywhere you go in the world based on your favourite Music style on your phone. The is a mobile social app for Club Events&Promotions/Discounts and new Party friends. ClubbingTribe combines Facebook experience and Viber like communication, with no phone calls only messaging, along with a Dating feature functionality.

For more information, please email us at office@ventureconnect. Also, check out the Romanian version of the material on ZF.ro.

Venture Mentoring with Radu Georgescu: 8 May, TechHub Bucharest

We are happy to announce the beginning of the Venture Mentoring program. The first session is planned on 8th May, together with Radu Georgescu: Serial Entrepreneur & Venture Capitalist, Founder of GECAD Group.

The Venture Mentoring program consists of a series of mentoring sessions, where entrepreneurs can discuss freely and in a very friendly environment their business and issues which they are facing, receiving practical advice on how to sustainable develop their company.

The session on 8th May (TechHub Bucharest, 14.30 – 17.00) plans to discuss the following topics:

– Managing your company’s growth: evolution from the start-up stage to achieving a competitive product, increasing the number of clients and how right you rate increased faster than you expected,
– How to choose the correct investors for your business?
– Advisors and mentors – at which point in the development of your business should they become involved?
– Identify strategic partnerships, business structure and strategy.

The number of seats is limited. You can register at the event page.

Looking forward to next Venture Mentoring session.

Cartagena Capital, Black Sea Trade & Investment Program and confirmed guests for 28 May


VentureConnect, a program dedicated to IT, technology and online entrepreneurs, announces more than 30 investors present for the upcoming edition, hosted on 28th May at Grand Cinema Digiplex. Projects for this edition can be submitted by 15th of May.

Being one of the most noteworthy initiatives in Romania, VentureConnect reached its seventh edition and for the first time it is organised in an out-of-the-box location, the largest cinema hall in Bucharest, Grand Cinema Digiplex.

Entrepreneurs who wish to pitch their business in front of investors and businessmen from Romania and  Central and Eastern Europe, can submit their projects by 15th May 2013.

Among the confirmed guests we wish to name: Nils Granath (Technology M&A advisor, Investor, mentor for the entrepreneurial community and Partner Cartagena Capital), Barry Kolodkin (Regional Program Manager for Black Sea Trade Investment Promotion Program), Numan Numan (Managing Director  of 212LTD venture fund), Orlando Szasz (Co-founder Renania and Business-Angel), as well as other potential investors and businessmen from Romania and Eastern-Europe.

Based on my extensive and very positive working experience with Romanian entrepreneurs and software developers, I´m very glad to see that VentureConnect is doing a fantastic job in bringing Romanian start-ups together with investors. Through initiatives such as this, the Romanian and Eastern European entrepreneurial community is encouraged to reach new business heights and deliver scalable international businesses”, says Nils Granath, Partner Cartagena Capital.

For the first time, the event will include two pitching sessions: one dedicated to early stage start-ups and the other one for more mature companies in search of a larger investment process.

Romania is one of BSTIP’s 12 Black Sea countries, an EU member and a large economy in the region. We believe that Romania is an important trade and investment destination  for the IT sector. BSTIP is supporting VentureConnect by promoting this regional initiative in the entire Black Sea region throughout its business support organisations and networks. We hope for homegrown financing initiatives like VentureConnect to multiply across the region as they provide capital in underserved market segments and are important to improve the IT marketplace from this area, says Barry Kalodkin, Regional Program Manager for Black Sea Trade Investment Promotion Program.

During  2012, VentureConnect evolved from a match-making event to an entire support platform for Romanian and Eastern European projects, throughout activities such as: a digital community for business-angels and mentoring programs, known as Venture Mentoring.

For the 28th of May edition, pitching entrepreneurs will benefit from a two days training held by  Mihaela and Viorel Apetrei (MTW Romania). The mentoring sessions are designed to  improve entreptreneurs’ pitching and their presentation skills.

Looking forward to having you join us on 28th May at Grand Cinema Digiplex, together with Ziarul Financiar.

Daniel Nicolescu on Product Management at Venture Mentoring

Daniel Nicolescu, Country Manager PayU Romania will attend this year’s fifth Venture Mentoring: “Product Management, from idea to launch”, held on April 25, starting at 15:00 at the Foundation Post Privatization.

During 2012, the Venture Connect Foundation launched new programs of interest to entrepreneurs and to investors: Venture Mentoring and AngelConnect.ro, a digital community of business angels in Romania and South East Europe.

 Venture Mentoring consists in bi-monthly sessions lead by a mentor brought by Venture Connect Foundation, in order to meet with entrepreneurs in search of answers and solutions to business problems they encounter.

The Venture Mentoring session led by Daniel Nicolescu aims to debate with the participants the concept of Product Managementby proposing to discuss topics such as the definition and role of product management, product life cycle (evaluation of ideas, building a business case, product definition, development and launching, maintenance and optimization) and also aims to achieve a potential future strategic business partnership or to establish concrete ways for business development.

In 2002, Daniel Nicolescu began his work at GECAD, a company started by Radu Georgescu (serial entrepreneur and member of Venture Connect Foundation Board). Since 2005 he served as CTO (Chief Technical Officer) within Avangate. During his arrival at Avangate, many projects were still in an early stage, which allowed him to be actively involved in their development, propose solutions and understand the functionality of the company’s e-commerce platform.

In 2008, Daniel was promoted to Business Development Manager within the Avangate branch from the United States. In this new role, he focused on creating new opportunities for business expansion and on defining close ties with major customers of the company.

In November 2011, Daniel Nicolescu became Chief Product Officer at PayU Group, where he led various projects to increase the PayU activity into new verticals industry. By mid-2012, Daniel works within the Department of Strategic Partnerships and Development for the PayU Group. Since February 2013, Daniel holds the position of Country Manager PayU Romania.

During my work experience within the technology industry, product management played a radical role. I am happy to share my experience and knowledge with those who will attend the meeting: entrepreneurs, managers or young people who want to improve their knowledge. ” mentioned Daniel Nicolescu, Country Manager PayU Romania.

To register for the event, please visit our event page: www.ventureconnect.ro/events/venture-mentoring

Claudiu Vrînceanu speaks about start-up communication tips at Venture Mentoring

Claudiu Vrinceanu, editor-in-chief of online business magazine Wall-Street.ro, will attend the fourth Venture Mentoring edition from 2013: “Communication for start-ups: what story awaits a journalist from an entrepreneur” to be held on April 11, starting at 15.00, at the Post-Privatization Foundation.

In 2012, Venture Connect Foundation launched new programs of interest both to entrepreneurs and investors: Venture Mentoring, coaching meetings and AngelConnect.ro, business-angels community bringing together members from Romania and South East Europe.

About Claudiu Vrinceanu

Claudiu Vrinceanu is editor-in-chief of online business magazine Wall-Street.ro, journalist with over 8 years of experience with a special attention to entrepreneurship and Romanian businesses. Since 2011, Claudiu is moderator and producer of the Start-Up Wall-Street show, a talk show broadcasted live on Wall Street.ro and Radio Lynx, which is intended for entrepreneurs and those who want to start a project on their own. Also, Claudiu is a member of the Board of the Global Entrepreneurship Week and member of Romanian Business Leaders Foundation.

About Venture Mentoring

Venture Mentoring involves bi-monthly meetings with a mentor brought by Venture Connect Foundation, which meets with entrepreneurs who need answers and solutions to business problems they face. During each session, in a friendly and relaxed environment, entrepreneurs can present their project and the questions related to it and then receive specific advice for the sustainable development of their company.

The Venture Mentoring Session led by Claudiu Vrinceanu aims to continue the debate started last year, “Communication and branding for start-ups with Juliana Butuc-Cerchez (Corporate Affairs Officer GECAD Group), this time showing a press man’s perspective. The workshop from April 11th, will hold a debate on how entrepreneurs can present their business, product or service in front of a journalist, how to define their start-up in order to generate a current news topic and also how to plan their communication strategy.

“As a business journalist, I feel comfortable while interacting with entrepreneurs and I enjoy writing or talking about them daily. Why? Entrepreneurs create businesses and jobs. Hence, an entrepreneur is a mediator between capital and labor.  So many valuable entrepreneurs don’t come forward and I wish to help them with that.” says Claudiu Vrinceanu.

To register, please visit our event’s page.



“Innovation in Business” with Marius Ghenea

Marius Ghenea, Business-Angel and Chairman of ARMO (Romanian Association of Online Shops) will attend the second meeting of this year’s Venture Mentoring:Innovation in Business“, held on 27 February, from 15.00 at the Post-Privatization Foundation.

In 2012, the Venture Connect Foundation launched new programs of interest for both the entrepreneurial community, as well for the investor’s side: Venture Mentoring, bi-monthly mentoring sessions and AngelConnect.ro, community designed to bring together business angels from Romania and South Eastern  Europe.

About Venture Mentoring

The Venture Mentoring program involves bi-monthly meetings with a mentor brought by the Venture Connect Foundation. The mentor meets with entrepreneurs who need answers and solutions to business problems they face. The issues proposed for debate are diverse, and last year alone the meetings centered around topics such as business development, product development, marketing and communications, intellectual property and other details about the financing and exit.

Session led by Marius Ghenea proposes for discussion:

  • Content, context, processes and results in business innovation
  • Entrepreneurship or corporate intrapreneurship,
  • Differences between creativity and business innovation,
  • Structural methods of generating scalable business ideas,
  • Determining the true value of a business idea,
  • Efficiently use tools of problem analysis and solving.

Venture Connect Foundation started a series of activities dedicated to the business environment that are designed to mature this growing local ecosystem: Venture Mentoring for a continuous education and interaction with the entrepreneurial sector, AngelConnect to enhance relations with potential investors and Venture Connect, the largest event. Through these activities we want to support Romanian start-ups and regional businesses development and increase the possibility of obtaining an investment. And we believe that a rigorous business education is a great starting point, “says Marius Ghenea.

About Marius Ghenea

Marius Ghenea is a renowned Romanian entrepreneur, the business man to go to when you have a golden idea, and the person to trust for guidance in case of business challenges.

His entrepreneurial efforts have shown off in a series of successful businesses, being present in the Forbes and Capital Entrepreneurial Count Down in the past years. Marius Ghenea was included in the 2004 Classification provided by Ziarul Financiar for the Best 10 Romanian Business Man. He also enjoyed a leading position in the Top Romanian Entrepreneurs count-down by Revista Biz in 2010.

Some of his day to day professional responsibilities include being President for the Romanian Association of E-Shopping; Board Advisor Maastricht School of Management Romania; and Board Member in the Community Foundations Program. Always a member of the business TV show Arena Leilor, co-organizer and lector of the entrepreneurial School for StartUps, he still finds time for writing his first book dedicated to the entrepreneurial field and the Romanian business market: “Antreprenoriat, drumul de la idei catre oportunitati si succes in afaceri”.

To register, please sign up here: http://www.ventureconnect.ro/events/venture-mentoring/.

Venture Mentoring with Radu Georgescu

Radu Georgescu, Founding Partner & Chairman GECAD Group, will participate in the first Venture Mentoring session of 2013: “The expansion of a company to international business markets“, held on 6 February, from 15.00 at the Post-Privatization Foundation. 2012 was a very full and productive tear for the Venture Connect Foundation with launching new programs of interest for entrepreneurs and investors as well: Venture Mentoring, bi-monthly mentoring sessions and AngelConnect.ro, online community of business angels bringing together members from Romania and SEE.

The Venture Mentoring program involves bi-monthly meetings with a mentor brought by the Venture Connect Foundation. The mentor meets with entrepreneurs who need answers and solutions to business problems they face. The issues proposed for debate are diverse, and last year alone the meetings centered around topics such as business development, product development, marketing and communications, intellectual property and other details about the financing and exit.

The project started in March 2012 in an effort to support the entrepreneurial community throughout the entire year and to resolve immediate business problems participants put forth. In each session, in a friendly and relaxed environment, entrepreneurs can present their project and the questions they might have, with the aim of receiving specific advice for a sustainable growth of their company.

I mostly appreciate Venture Mentoring as the program has a simple format and it is focused on direct results, possible solutions and networking. This is the second session I will mentor and wait with great interest to take up elaborate questions with the hope of finding immediate solutions for the proposed business issues faced by entrepreneurs in general“, says Radu Georgescu, Founding Partner & Chairman GECAD Group.

In 2012, there were 12 Venture Mentoring sessions, with over 100 attending companies in Bucharest and in the country. For more informations on the meeting scheduled for 6th February, please visit the event page: http://www.ventureconnect.ro/events/venture-mentoring/.

Venture Connect Foundation announces the launch of AngelConnect community

Venture Connect Foundation launches AngelConnect, the business-angels community that brings together members from Romania and South-East Europe. The initiative launching the community emerged in February 2012, AngelConnect being one of the most important projects for Venture Connect Foundation in 2012.

VentureConnect Foundation, one of the most important initiative from the Romanian entrepreneur environment, announces the launching of AngelConnect, a digital community created for business-angels from Romania and the regions nearby. AngelConnect community represents an extension of the activities developed around VentureConnect events and VentureMentoring mentoring sessions, providing continuity, on a medium and long term, for the direct interactions between entrepreneurs and potential local and nearby investors.

AngelConnect aims to become a platform for connection and communication between the two communities: entrepreneurs and investors and also a growing pylon for IT investments.

“Two years after launching VentureConnect, the first pitching initiative in the IT industry in Romania, we mark another milestone: AngelConnect. Through this project, VentureConnect Foundation addresses entrepreneurs looking for the right investors depending on the development of their business structure and the target audience, being also a community created to educate the Romanian entrepreneur environment and shaping a community of local investors. In the next period, VentureConnect Foundation will develop and expand more the functionality of AngelConnect platform and more functionality and based on community membership criteria the platform will bring together business angels with a real active interest for the support and finance the projects in the region” stated Ana Maria Andronic, founding member of VentureConnect Foundation and Senior Associate in the law firm Biriş Goran.

The network already counted 15 members; some investors are expected to join the initiative in the near future: Andreas Cser – Business Angel, Alexandre Almajeanu – Business Angel, Ciprian Ghețău – Business Angel and  Founder of Black Sea Capital, Maxim Gurvits – Business Angel and co-founder Eleven Accelerator, Gwidon Humeniuk – Business Angel and member in the investment board of Xevin Investments, Eleven Accelerator – Investment fund seed and accelerator, LAUNCHub – Investment fund seed and accelerator, Radu Georgescu – Founding Partner & Chairman GECAD Group, Marius Ghenea – Business Angels and FIT Distribution president, Péter Barta – Business Angel and director of Post Privatizare Foundation, Orlando Nicoară – Business Angel and General Manager Mediafax Group, Mihai Seceleanu – Founderof InternetCorp și Business-angel or Vlad Stan – Co-Founder Geekcelerator and Business-Angel.

“The benefits of the AngelConnect community membershipare numerous, ranging from a depth knowledge of companies needing investment and various investment opportunities with other potential investors, the knowledge of new ways of development in different segments of the IT industry” says Marius Ghenea, Business Angel and member of the  VentureConnect board.”

More information about AngelConnect and how an investor becomes a member of the community on the website: www.angelconnect.ro.

Venture Mentoring: IP in online, pleasure gained by experts

Venture Connect Foundation is organizing the eighth meeting of the Venture Mentoring program. Each month, mentors from Venture Connect Foundation meet entrepreneurs who need answers and solutions to the business problems they face. The program began in March, with more than 100 companies taking part in the program so far.

The meeting from 14th of November will be organized at Post Privatization Foundation and will be led by Ana Maria Andronic, Senior Associate in the law firm Biriş Goran and Venture Connect founding member.  Ana Maria intends to discuss topics of interest for the business environment such as intellectual property in the online area, registration of a trademark or patenting a product.

About Ana Maria Andronic

Ana Maria Andronic is a specialist in intellectual property rights, with over thirteen years experience in the legal field, starting her career as a judge in 1997. Ana Maria is one of the few lawyers in the business that blends continental right with common law, based on her legal experience in the United States of America, having the right to practice in Romania and in New York State.

A few years ago, Ana Maria was a lead attorney at the American Bar Association/Rule of Law Initiative in Bucharest, where she managed several justice reform related projects funded by the Unites States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United States Department of Justice (DoJ). She specializes in IT transactions, with an emphasis on Internet, copyright and trademark related matters and corporate/M&A issues.

This is the second meeting of the Venture Mentoring program I lead and I’m looking forward enjoy both interaction and questions from participants. I feel great among entrepreneurs from IT environment and it’s a pleasure to have intellectual challenges coming from them, so I, enthusiastically, expect the meeting to discuss in a friendly and relaxed environment. The topics discussed will include aspects of legal protection and commercial exploitation of software or website, details of registration marks, or any other legal issues faced by entrepreneurs in their everyday work. My wish is that this meeting will support the entrepreneurial community and help understand how online businesses can grow better and faster. ” says Ana Maria Andronic.

About Venture Mentoring

Up to now, over 100 companies and early stage startups have participated in the Venture Mentoring program. Among the discussed topics were: structuring an online business and investment necessary documentation, strategy and ownership in a company, communication and branding for start-ups, security product and service through intellectual property rights. In addition to access the information useful for business sites, participants benefit of new business opportunities, getting in contact with new customers and potential partners.

Venture Mentoring is a singular event in the Romanian business landscape. I attended several meetings and I was excited about the open and friendly environment, where myself and other entrepreneurs who were just starting out, received feedback and suggestions to our ideas from businessmen with experience. Finally we exchanged ideas and information with other participants and with some of them and I began to collaborate on various projects. Venture Mentoring is undoubtedly a very useful event for me, ” says Cornel Nita, CEO Iptelis.

To participate at the Venture Mentoring eighth meeting, participants can register here: http://www.ventureconnect.ro/events/venture-mentoring/.

We look forward to having you join us!