About Cristian Olarasu

Hi, my name’s Cristian Constantin Olarasu. I recently turned 30.

What do I do?

Everything boils down to this:
1. I’m generally curious about problems that people struggle with
2. For some of the problems, I try to come up with some solve. It usually involves technology.
3. I then try to get lots and lots of people to adopt and pay for the solution

Most of the “solves” I worked on(list TBT) fall into the bucket of tech products. I also think about marketing and distribution and technology and lots of other stuff, but that comes later. Eventually, some of those “solves” can became companies. Most of the time I design things myself and get other people on board afterwards.

Very few times, it works; a lot of other times it fails. Sometimes it looks like it works, but actually doesn’t.

I have a passion for brilliant experience design and tend to gravitate to new technologies(e.g. big data, blockchain, machine-learning/AI). Curious about macroeconomics, game theory & network effects/graph analysis.

A short timeline:

19 – present

I decided to join Nike Central Product Management and the global digital transformation effort of one of the world’s most iconic brands. We’re here to create Nike’s future, and build the next generation technology products that drive everyone to be a better ATHLETE*(if you have a body, you’re an athlete)

Partnering with the Global Head of Consumer Products to shape, guide and implement a purposeful plan across all of Nike’s digital properties.

’15-’19
Joined Digvijay Lamba in the quest to build the first data-lake virtualization platform that would eliminate ETL through automation and A.I. After some iterations, we ended up building Lore IO where I acted as Head of Product –responsible for Lore IO’s product strategy and oversaw product development, user experience and led the usage and adoption of our data platform across Fortune500 companies- getlore.io.

Lore managed to gether a remarkable group of people that have a chance to change the industry’s future.
Our data platform grew from 0 to $Xmil contract value in less than 1 year and processed hundreds of terabytes of big data for various Fortune 500 Companies in that period of time.

’15
Paired with Vali and worked on a distributed virtual file system named Swazm, that helped on dynamically reading from public/private clouds – similar to ipfs+(with)compute+(with)bandwidth. We ended up with our proprietary blockchain on top of BitTorrent protocol. You could open any file from cloud in a local application without storing the whole resilient copy on your drive. I learned how co-founder relationships can mean a lot. My friend continued to work on it on the side. Early prototype on public clouds: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8279640 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LGzDHSfV_-U
current version: swazm.com

’13-’15
Helped co-found a health-tech company named Kurbo that uses mobile technology and personalized coaching to help overweight children get their weight under control. As it was just me and Joanna, in the beginning, I ended up, designed the first version of the product, helped raise the first round, convinced one co-founder to join and developed the initial strategy for the product. We raised $ from an impressive list of investors and it eventually became the most successful weight control programme in the US, with governmental adoption throughout Singapore.

’12
I co-founded a parenting company named Early(former Good Momming!) along with a team of great people. Early developed a smart personal assistant,  aimed to assist parents with all the processes, essential for the healthy growth of a little one, in the first years of life like nutrition, sleep, growth or cognition. It ended up in Vancouver through an acceleration program called Grow-Lab and then in Silicon Valley. Interesting experience. (there’s plenty to tell so.. TBT). Most of our work went into the first version of Kurbo.

’10
Co-founded a brand innovation company called Standard Report. We’ve built a complete framework and methodology for quantifying intangible assets, like the efficiency of brand value and providing consumer intelligence insights. It was partially funded by the EU(biggest mistake of my life).

’09 
First job as a Product Owner at a big internet company. Understood management, lean principles, agile development and other useful stuff. Got my first mentors.

’06
I’ve built a platform/system called Sunatic in my attempt to personalize online travel. Started in my room working 16h days without telling anyone(how stupid), then got ex-high-school and college colleagues to build it with me. At the end, the largest database of accommodation units to date(11163 in 2011) and some smart algorithmic pairing with traveller requests.

Personal mentions

In 2013, Forbes Magazine decided to put me on the ’30 under 30′ list with entrepreneurs who have a chance at changing the world. (dunno if that’s true, doing my best though)

Won a couple more of small innovation awards and a few “potential” mentions here and there.

So..
you can say that for the last couple of years or so I’ve been involved in the tech industry. Along the way, I ended up gathering plenty of knowledge that turned out quite valuable. I’ve also developed a couple of theories about how and why certain projects and teams develop success. I’ll try to share my knowledge here.

One more note, as far as for making it into tech, I see technology as product ground 0, no matter the product or service that’s for sale. Sometimes, experience matters a lot and it should dictate the roadmap. Most of the times, you’re thinking about a solution and technology is 90% of it.  I also see a deep understanding of distribution and GTM as a critical hack. In 2019 tech product design is impossible without a (solid) grasp of how the technology works.. so you’ll need that for sure.

Aa..  you also need an empty garage 🙂

Coordinates
  • cristian.olarasu @ gmail.com
  • @cristianctin