Eventbrite didn’t start thinking International until 2010, and they paid for it.

Mar 13, 2013
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Renaud-Visage

During the first Paris International Tech Meetup earlier this week, Eventbrite CTO Renaud Visage took the stage (which amounted to standing on a table in the middle of the 50 Partners accelerator space), and talked to a full crowd of nearly 100 people about Eventbrite – its future, its present, and its past. During his talk, Renaud made a point to warn startups to build global from day one.

“Eventbrite didn’t think International until 2010”

The company, founded in 2006, build up a strong following in the tech community easily, and quickly grew out from there, as people realized there was an easy way to organize events online – both paid and free – which were simple to use and even simpler to share with attendees. In 2010, the company began to see growth internationally, despite the fact that it only accepted US Dollars  as a currency (UPDATE: the company accepted about 15 currencies as of their launch in 2006), and Visage says they spent 6-7 months back-tracking in order to tag strings of text in code to translation/localization. Nowadays, startups that are building a product have to think global from day one – it’s not about launching your product in 5 languages from the beginning  it’s about building the infrastructure to be able to do so early on.

Nowadays, Eventbrite has offices in the UK, and they are used in 179 countries  (despite the fact, visage says, that they only offer around 24 currencies on the site); at a previous event, Visage announced Eventbrite’s plans to hire in France and other local markets. Despite their international growth and dominance in the vertical they operate in, Visage says “in terms of employees and focus, we haven’t really gone there” – ‘there’ being international, that is.

The company raised $50 Million in 2011 intended for international growth, and despite the clones and copies and ‘similar-looking products’ that have popped up internationally, they’ve managed to work their way, little by little, into these local markets. In reflecting about their international growth in terms of users in contrast to their physical presence and focus on those markets, Visage says that many companies see growth in a market, and decide to follow up on it and get a local presence in that market early: “you can’t really go back once you commit to a [new market],” Visage says.

“even if you’re used in many places, you shouldn’t [set up a local office in] many places. Think twice.”

The event at which Visage spoke also featured Dashlane cofounder and CEO Emmanuel Schalit; over all, this event is a welcomed addition to the Paris startup scene, and we at the Rude Baguette look forward to seeing future additions. You can sign up on Meetup to get updates about their latest events.

UPDATE: Some of the figures originally reported were in reference to their activity in 2010, so we have updated them to reflect current figures, where relevant.