Meet Marilda Qerimi, Country Manager Italy @ mobile.de / an eBay Inc. Company
Interviewed by Elina Tilipman, Head of Music for 88TC88
Where are you from?
I was born in Albania, but my mom has Greek roots. I grew up in Italy, studying and working there for more than half of my life. About 5 years ago, I moved to Berlin.
How did you get into tech/mobile?
I studied business administration at Bocconi University in Milan/Italy and there is some focus on “What’s next” – future trends and things like this. I was always really interested in knowing where trends come from, so it was really easy to develop something on that level and see opportunities.
What made you move to Berlin?
I was offered a job here with Fox Mobile (previously called Jamba). Before this, I worked in Italy for a startup. When I received the job offer in Berlin, I definitely wanted to get some international experience and start from scratch. I was a little bored in Milan. I felt the need for new challenges and a change. So I thought okay – lets take this opportunity to head to a new country and new city, to learn a new language and see if I can make it.
Does Berlin feel like a bubble to you or really open?
Berlin has been attractive in the past and the startup scene is bringing even more interest out here, adding international diversity and bringing new ideas. I think Berlin as a city always had a nice identity when it comes to design, art, everything that is really vital and creative. And if you add a bit of business – I think it’s the perfect city. In a way, it’s an open bubble.
Where do you work?
I work for an eBay company. I head the Italian business of mobile.de, the leading European car marketplace, as Country Manager Italy under the automobile.it brand.
It’s the best working experience so far, as it’s challenging and I’m surrounded by so many smart people. Automobile.it is something between a startup and corporation. It’s a small business. I joined a month after the platform was launched, and we basically started building the business from scratch. And it’s nice because it’s a small team developing something new from the beginning under a big brand like mobile.de and eBay. You pitch internally to get money to develop your business, so there is some startup feeling, which I like.
Where do you see yourself in the next few years?
I would like to have my business in the future and that’s why I love hanging out with the Geekettes and startup people; to get ideas. I like challenging myself, this is the only way you can learn and develop. There is nothing else more satisfying and exciting than reaching the point of having something to call your own. But I think you need to find the right cofounders - it’s a marriage basically you are entering when you start up a project.
Is there a specific project you are most proud of so far in your life?
Honestly, I think I’m proud of every step I have made so far in my life, building a successful path. I’m happy with everything I’ve achieved. I come from a pretty unknown country, and given the barriers and cultural differences in all the places I’ve been studying, working and living, I’m proud to be where I am now; surrounded by great, smart people and connecting through different things.
What was the first thing you thought when you heard about Berlin Geekettes?
Cool! I like these kind of networks. And women in tech are definitely making a difference. The group was really needed. I’m personally happy about meeting new Geekettes day after day, because there is a lot of knowledge sharing, networking and also a chance to be mentored. All of us can benefit.
Any advice you’d like to give?
There are no problems – only opportunities.
It’s always worth a try. Never think something is impossible.
Stay Focused. Private, personal, professional – always pick priorities and stay focused on them.