Busuu – small company, big impact

Busuu – small company, big impact

Original post by  , TechCityNews

What it’s like to work at Busuu

While busuu is the world’s largest social network for language learning, with 35 million registered users across the globe, it is run entirely by a staff of 30. Small company, big impact.

Busuu only relocated its office to London in late 2012, moving from Madrid, where the company was founded four years prior by Adrian Hilti and Bernhard Niesner, who came up with the idea for busuu while studying for an MBA at IE Business School.

Moving to London was a tough decision to make, says Bernhard [pictured right], but he believes it was necessary:AOXf2PrN0h

“Spain just wasn’t doing well enough economically and London had a much bigger and better talent pool for us to grow.

Perhaps as a testament to working at busuu, all ten original staff agreed to make the big move to London.

Learning curves

Today, the number of employees has risen to 30, though this is expected to rise to around 40 by the end of 2013, says Bernhard.

busuu-logo-2013Busuu’s growth has been exceptional – the site currently has 35 million registered users, with 40,000 new members joining each day.

As a result, hiring has become a priority for the company. It needs more support across all areas: technology, marketing, social media, product development and community management among others.

Grand designs

Busuu’s office certainly has room to accommodate many more people. The startup is working out of a large office just off City Road, near Old Street roundabout.

With a modern, sleek feel, the office comes across as a place where business gets done with Teutonic efficiency (perhaps due to its founders’ background: Niesner is Austrian, while Hilti hails from Liechtenstein).


The company offers all the usual perks afforded to startup employees: free breakfast, couches, team days and a generally fun atmosphere to work in.

“The cool office and free breakfasts are of course nice,” says Oula Akiki, education director at the company, “but to be honest, the main perk of working at busuu is working on the product. We’re all working towards the same goal, of educating our users and helping them learn new languages. You get a real satisfaction from the job.”

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