Last week, as ThredUP, a leading US online platform to buy and sell second-hand clothing, announced a $175 million round of funding, the Ukrainian tech blog AIN.UA revealed that “almost half of [its] engineering team is based in Ukraine.”
As many Silicon Valley companies, thredUP has difficulties in hiring programmers. “To fill technical vacancies thredUP decided to seek out remote talents. Several developers were hired through Toptal.com, a freelance exchange with strict selection parameters, and it occurred that they were all from Ukraine,” writes AIN.
Thus, although the company did not initially consider Ukraine as a potential R&D base, ThredUP had 15 people working for them from this country by October 2017. Now ThredUP’s Ukrainian team reaches 34 members, making up “almost half the company’s entire engineering staff.” The time difference with the head office is 10 hours.
AIN reports that Ukrainian engineers recently moved to a new office in Kyiv (Kiev), occupying an entire floor in a business center.
“The legal framework for daily operations is provided by [outsourcing business service provider] Alcor, and it deals with all financial issues. Our engineers, like most IT specialists, are individual entrepreneurs and contract with Alcor,” said Anton Naumenko, the director of the ThredUP’s Ukrainian office, to AIN.
The thredUP platform is available in 44 countries, which do not include Ukraine.
Ukrainian talents for US blockchain startup
Almost simultaneously Unstoppable Domains, an American blockchain startup, announced it raised $4 million from venture capital firm Draper Associates. This startup, too, is betting on Ukrainian talent, reports AIN.
Unstoppable Domains already has a representative office with four employees in the Ukrainian capital. Part of its fresh funding will be used to hire new additional developers and project managers in this Kyiv office.
One of the company’s founders, Bohdan Husev, is from Ukraine, notes AIN. He now serves as VP for development.