Happy being back to introduce another member of our team: Ankish Gupta, one of our senior software engineers.
Tell us about yourself:
I'm Ankish Gupta, 27 years old and I come from Lucknow (Lakhnau), a big city in the north of India. I grew up and went to school there. After that I moved to Patna, eastern India, where I attended the Indian Institute of Technology. It’s a chain of colleges in almost every state of India. I did my Bachelor of Technology in four years in computer science. Those four years were definitely the best time of my life. (Editor's note: Not your time with Logward???)
Afterwards I moved to Bangalore for my first job. I received a job offer for a mobile gaming Startup in Bangalore called Moonfrog Labs. Moonfrog builds mobile games for the Indian market. The gaming sector is an exciting world so it was nice for me to join them right after college. When I joined in 2015, Moonfrog was a small company with approximately 20 employees, working from a small office. During my time there we grew to almost 100 people and moved into a huge office. We also scaled from 100.000 to 1.000.000 users. For me it was really fun to see the growth in the several games I worked on. It was quite a fun time and a great learning experience.
After three and a half years I decided to found my own startup with two colleagues from Moonfrog. We left and tried getting Fataka (which is the Indian word for Firework) Games going. We worked on it for eight months building mobile games. We created three games in total, launched them in the Play Store, looked for funding, and talked to investors. Since the world of mobile gaming evolves very fast, finding investors to fund your company is the hardest part of the process. Unfortunately, this also proved to be the bottleneck for Fataka Games.
I met Hari while working at Moonfrog in 2015. At the end of 2018, I was wrapping up my startup and he was moving Logward to India looking for developers when he called me. In January 2019 I joined Logward and it’s lots of fun so far. So, you hadn't worked in logistics before joining Logward. Was it complicated for you?
Yes, because there are so many new things and logistics was a completely new world for me. Even today I am learning interesting new stuff constantly. Of course, you build up a lot of knowledge, but it takes some time. It is by nature a very complicated and vast domain. Anyway, it is a fun time. It’s a huge industry and we can fundamentally change the global supply chain.
What exactly do you do at Logward? I’m working as a senior software engineer. Most of my work occurs on the back-end technology such as developing new services, working on the complete infrastructure, production issues during releases, back-end design and so on. We also want to expand and hire more and more people. This means a lot of recruiting activity, finding new people, doing interviews, also introducing and helping new people to find their way in the company.
The most exciting aspect is that you join with a few people and you can shape the culture of the startup. Hence, it is also my responsibility to set up a good culture.
Why did you choose Logward? What do you like at Logward?
Before joining I had two or three long discussions with Hari. I couldn’t find the potential Logward showed anywhere else in the market, and this really excited me! Besides, I wanted to join a startup an early stage, not a startup which is already grown to 100 people or so.
The best thing at Logward is working with people from so many countries. We're constantly interchanging with other cultures and traditions. I also love directly seeing the impact of my work. Of course it is never boring at the office; I perform with great fellows that are smart and skilled and are fun to have around.
Describe yourself in three adjectives: Friendly, dedicated, inquisitive.
What do you find motivating/ inspiring?
During college I started an entrepreneurship club of which I was the coordinator, we organized lots of events such as inviting startup founders and specific speakers. We even started an entrepreneurship course, which really showed me the value of the startup world. Somewhere along the way it became my dream to have a startup which achieves some serious scale. Of course I tried it out once and it didn’t work out, but I’m happy I tried, because I learned so many things I can apply in my day to day work.
Whenever I talk to people that have founded startups, they feel so happy and excited about the projects they are creating. So seeing the people I have worked with and now founding their own startup inspires me.
So, we can directly answer the question of your biggest dream?
I would say so. My biggest dream is to start a startup that reaches scale. I feel that fulfilling this dream would really give me a sense of achievement. That is my motivation and inspiration. This is also a reason why I am working for Logward: Because I want to lear and prepare by participating in another company growing.
How do you keep yourself organized? Especially during Lockdown in India?
Well, there is no fixed structure. I am not a person that writes down notes on a sheet of paper or laptop. I guess it’s just all in my head! I like to create a process in my head and follow the process. There is no clear definition and I know it sounds clumsy, but that’s just how it is. And, anyway, I like things to be streamlined, stick to my own process and have a general organization.
What does teamwork mean to you?
I think the most important aspect of teamwork is communication. You need to speak, especially when working in a small team. I think there must be given a proper flat hierarchy where anyone can speak to anyone. However, you should be vocal about failings or shortcomings. If you see that something is going wrong, you should mention it in order to solve the matter to try to improve it sooner rather than later.
Second thing must be fun. If you don't have fun, you won't enjoy going to work. And if you really enjoy what you are doing, it won’t feel like work!
When the interviewer drops a fire joke..
What is your favorite thing to do in your free time?
During my time off I like to do two very specific things: Firstly, I love watching sports such as cricket and football. Whenever there is a match, I make sure to watch it. For football on the international stage I support Liverpool and for India there is a great team called Bengaluru FC. We actually try to attend every single football match when they play in Bangalore. Other than that, if there is any kind of live sports and I have nothing else to do, I'll probably watch it.
Secondly, I like watching tv series. I am not a big fan of movies. Series are simply way better because of the long episodes and meaty content where you can attach to the characters over time.
Since you came out as a series enthusiast, you need to talk about your favorites:
The best series are definitely “Breaking Bad” and “Fargo”. The best Sitcom is “The Office” (U.S. version). Currently, I am watching the German series “Dark”, which is awesome so far. Not to forget Rick and Morty, which is also a great series. And do you follow the German Bundesliga? Hm yes, but not as much as the English Premier League. However when the Bundesliga restarted as the first league in Europe after the Covid-19 break, I watched all the matches. Now I've switched again I switched to Premier League. You also visited a football match during your stay in Germany last year, right?
Yes, the Bundesliga experience was basically one of the best of my life. I love football and I was so excited to go and see the match live! When Jonas told us, we would visit the match between SV Werder Bremen and SC Paderborn 07 I was very happy to finally see, a German match. Especially because you simply can’t compare Indian and German football (yet).
And how was Germany in general for you?
I have been to Germany before. I came to Germany two years ago to visit Oktoberfest in Munich and then went to Stuttgart's equivalent Wasen (Editor's Note: Yeah what else). My college friends accompanied me on this trip, and we had a lot of fun. That being said, I had the experience of European life before, but this time it was slightly different, because it was a business trip. This meant waking up at 7, going to the office, meeting the German colleagues, etc. Despite the slightly formal character I still had a lot of fun meeting all the new people. And I’d say that you can’t experience the culture and the life of a new country better than doing activities with new people and working or eating together with them for two weeks. Anyway, I love traveling and meeting new people, so my time in Germany was a blast.
Alright, thank you for that. Let’s come to our last tricky questions.
What did you want to become as a child? It’s funny because in India lots of people become engineers, but I actually wanted to become a software engineer when I was a kid because I love coding. I made lots of games back then in school and I wanted to get into a good engineering college, which was really tough.
If you had won $1.000.000, what would be the first thing you would do?
I think I would travel. There are still so many countries in my bucket list that I want to see. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t want to stay in fancy hotels or something. I’d want to stay in hostels. I’d spend the extra money on good food at these places.
Ankish in front of the Kremlin, 1659, colored
If you could ship goods for one famous person, which one would it be and what goods? Since I love football and especially seeing Jürgen Klopp coach, I would probably send him a crate of beer, because I simply admire him as a person and his function as a role model. If I could, I might send myself to talk to him (Editor’s note: That’s not how it works, but nice try). If you could be a TV series, which one would it be and why? I’d probably choose a sitcom like “The Office”, just to be in a happy environment and because it kind of represents my life.
Rapid Fire: Baked Potatoes or Onion Rings? Onion Rings Stew or Chili? Chili
Peanuts or almonds? Peanuts South or North America? South America
Breakfast pizza or breakfast sandwich? Breakfast sandwich
Logward is a Hamburg & Bangalore based logistics company. We build software, move containers, and change mindsets. If you have any questions or just want to say hi, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org. Or you can visit us at www.logward.com.