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This article originally appeared in the Bentley Magazine.
Running two companies in tandem isn’t easy, but Adam Brazg ’10 has developed a knack for balancing his time. It helps that one of the ventures is an online collaboration tool that Brazg and his business partner created to manage their own workflow.
Sister companies Trackolade and Bilberrry had their roots in Brazg’s first job post-graduation: auditing companies such as Microsoft for PwC Seattle. That introduction to the technology industry led Brazg to join a startup, which after a year could not close its final round of funding.
“Even though the startup failed, I learned what was needed to build sustainable software and saw how to manage a business,” says the former Finance major. “I was interested in the startup world, but there is a lot of uncertainty.”
To help determine his next career move, Brazg found contract work and collaborated on several projects with Ross Dzikovskyy. The two worked well together, and Brazg suggested starting their own business – a web development and design company they would name Bilberrry. The only problem: Dzikovskyy lives in Ukraine.
“We knew we could do it, but we needed a method to easily track our work together. We thought we could create a better product than some of the existing project management tools,” explains Brazg, noting the ease of adoption he believes sets Trackolade apart.
“We designed it to work for every user — developers, designers and clients — without being cumbersome. Trackolade was built out of self-interest, but even as we were creating it, we knew it could become a valuable asset to others as well.”
And it has. Both Trackolade and Bilberrry have taken off, with offices in Seattle and Kiev. Services include a multitude of design and development projects, but their specialty is custom-built tools to help clients streamline workflows.
“One of the best things about building and using Trackolade is that we can test out new features ourselves before offering them to clients.”
With 10 full-time employees and plans to hire several more, Brazg is ready to grow the company thanks to a foundation of forward-thinking, technology-infused business education from Bentley. A more surprising takeaway from his undergraduate studies was learning about international finance.
“As a student, you don’t really think any of that will apply to you early on in your career,” he notes. “But the global economy is applicable to so many different jobs that it’s a critical piece of a rounded business education.”
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Bentley University is named one of the country’s best institutions for undergraduate education in the just-published 2016 edition of The Princeton Review Annual college guide, “The Best 380 Colleges,” (Random House/Princeton Review).