The Swedish blood bank system, cracking the business model and teaching entrepreneurship to high school students – those are a few of the things Francis Adereti, founder of Redbank, has experienced during his three weeks in Sweden. We asked him a few questions to learn more!
Why did you apply to this program?
I applied to this program to learn more about my business, and especially the business model aspect. I also applied to network with people of like-minds and experience the city of Stockholm to be able to learn about their blood banking system.
Now that you are three weeks into the program, what has your experience been like so far?
Wow, these three weeks have been like three days! It’s been a really great experience. I’ve been able to learn a lot of things and meet a lot of people and so far I’ve been able to get to learn about how to improve my business model, I’ve been able to improve my networking skills and I’ve been able to go to some places here in Sweden to meet with people. It’s been amazing!
What has been the best moment?
The best moment was with the students from SSHL (Sigtunaskolan Humanistiska Läroverket). We had a session together with the students and tried to explain what entrepreneurship is all about by using Redbank as a case study and the students were amazing. That’s been my best moment so far!
What has been your biggest learning?
My biggest learning has been related to my customers. The blood banks have been given the platform for free but we discovered that we could actually build more features and turn the blood banks into potential customers. For me, that has been an eye opener and a major key in cracking the business model and revenue channel for my business.
What is the first thing you will do when you go back to Nigeria?
Wow… I need to meet with all my team members and I need to pass across this new model to them and we need to start implementing the new features. We will start rolling out the subscription features for the blood banks. So, I’m going back to my country to implement the new features to the platform.
What has it been like working with a group of people from so many different countries?
It’s been good. These three weeks have been about trying to understand people from different backgrounds. I enjoy my privacy a lot, so it’s been tough trying to cope with people from different backgrounds in the same room. But we have been able to be patient, and we had a session about cultural differences and I was able to learn a lot from that. That helped me to know why people act the way they act. So for me it was tough at the beginning, but after the session we had on intercultural communication I was able to move along with everyone.
What has it been like being in Sweden?
Being in Sweden, I’ve been able to visit the blood central (Blodcentralen) to see how blood donation processes are made easier. I was actually able to visit two of the Swedish blood banks, and for me the process is actually the same. Starting from when people come in to donate blood at the blood bank, they fill in their details and see the doctor and then donate the blood. So for me, I have been able to learn from seeing how to harness the power of technology and the software platform used in Sweden, where they send an email to donors when they are running low on a particular blood type. I’ve been able to go around to blood banks to see the process and it’s really going to help us back in our country to try to implement something similar.