LuxembourgMonAmour – Interview with Genna Elvin (Tadaweb)

Monetizing the Technology  Start-up  


Genna Elvin, Chief Tada Officer and Co-Founder of Tadaweb describes the challenge of realigning a tech start-up away from its focus on developing technology towards the generation of revenue streams. She reveals how stock options and the liberty to do what they want incentivizes the recruitment of a dedicated and diverse team. 


Can you describe Tadaweb?  


Tadaweb is a technology company that seeks to augment the human experience and the human way of doing things. We have created a secure, open-source intelligence platform that has made us a leader in the collection and enrichment of information. This enables investigative and analytical teams to obtain the information that they need by teaching our platform how they get their information from open sources. Over the past decade, our technology has allowed Tadaweb to become a leader in this field. This scaling up has increased the leverage available to analysts, magnifying the impact they can have. We focus on the public safety and national security sector. Tadaweb provides a visual programming language that offers an intuitive way to create software applications without writing code. 


What was your trajectory as a technology start-up? 


When we began, Luxembourg was focused on banking and finance: there were not a lot of technology startups. We concentrated on building our platform, not investing too much or growing too fast. An article in TechCrunch led to our visiting Google, Facebook, and Twitter. These successful companies were creating a great working environment, a culture, and amazing technology. We decided to bring that back to Luxembourg. A big lesson for start-ups is monetize, monetize, monetize as early as possible. We didn’t do that. Around 2008 we said, “Okay, we’ve got an amazing technology, but how are we going to sell it?” We went back to our roots and focused on how we could make the world a safer place. And that’s when product market fit came for us. 


A big lesson for start-ups is monetize, monetize, monetize as early as possible” 


How did you resolve the challenges you faced as a start-up? 


We remained a bootstrapped company for a long time. In early 2022 we decided, “Organic growth is great, but we want to really accelerate.” We went for external funding focusing on the US corporates both diversifying and scaling. People say it’s hard to bring top talent to Luxembourg. I don’t agree. Top people need a challenge and the liberty to do what they want. The Valley taught us startups don’t always have the resources to provide attractive remuneration in the early stages so they use the power of stock options. We became one of the companies to pioneer stock options in Luxembourg.