Aleksandar Memca, ⋮IWConnect – with the Right Team by Your Side, Everything is Possible!

26 Jan, 2021 | 6 minutes read

The interview was originally published in Macedonian language, and can be found on the following websites:

⋮IWConnect is a global, multi-disciplinary integration consultancy specializing in strategy, data management, analytics, infrastructure, and growth enablement. They provide Digitally Optimized Technology Solutions (DOTS) and have been in the IT market for nearly 17 years. Formerly known as InterWorks, the company rebranded last month to better reflect its growth, competencies, and experience.

We spoke with Aleksandar Memca, a managing partner at ⋮IWConnect, about his journey to success and the key factors behind the success of Macedonia’s largest IT company.

IWC: Aleksandar, you started your programming career 20 years ago. Why did you decide to start a career in programming?

As children, we often dream about our future. Many of us say, “When I grow up, I will become a doctor.” Similarly, when I was in primary school 35 years ago, I was driven by the desire to create something new. I started programming simple games on a Commodore 64. Over time, this passion grew into a desire to create programs that would make life easier for the people around me. This led to building various accounting programs, automated reports, and more. My continuous learning and desire to explore helped me develop solutions for complex industry-specific problems and turn them into businesses. My passion for programming existed since I was little, and the opportunity to create something that made people’s lives easier strengthened my decision to pursue programming.

IWC: What made you come back from USA to Macedonia and open a company here?

Macedonia is my birthplace. I grew up there and have many fond memories, especially in Bitola. I wanted to give back to the community that shaped me, so I returned to Macedonia and started a company. In 2004, the IT market in Macedonia, particularly in Bitola, was small. My partner and I, along with a few brave enthusiasts, decided to create that market. Today, I’m proud that we have contributed to the growth of talent and employment opportunities in the IT sector.

IWC: What is the story behind InterWorks, or now ⋮IWConnect?

The beginnings of ⋮IWConnect are rooted in my desire to create value for the community that helped me become who I am, combined with a business interest. Bitola had a serious talent pool back then, thanks to the education system. We decided to compete with the dominant markets in India and China. Our experience showed that we could succeed on the global stage. Over time, we focused on connectivity and digitalization, building a team of professionals committed to growth and a fulfilling life. We know how to build impeccable professionals willing to gain knowledge and grow, all while leading fulfilling lives where money isn’t the most valuable asset.

IWC: How did you manage to build a company from 5 to more than 170 employees, present in five different locations?

I didn’t do it alone. I have a dedicated team that we’ve built over almost two decades. Success comes from dreaming big and believing everything is possible. Then, we take actions to reach our goals. It’s about taking risks, sometimes blindly, due to our faith in what we’re building. Creating a community of friends with a common goal for growth requires focus and dedication. Today, the global market is open, and many individuals offer IT services worldwide. This is a great opportunity, but creating a cohesive team requires a huge focus on our vision and mission.

Having our family values in mind, having our desire for growth through adventures and challenges of any size, as well as the great need to help each other, make us feel content in the process of creating humble wealth, and at the same time help us keep our integrity. These are shortly the ingredients my colleagues and I use daily to maintain and continue building ⋮IWConnect.

IWC: How much does Macedonia mean to you and how do you feel when you come here? What is your favorite place in the country?

As I have said before, Macedonia is my birth country to which I am connected to with a lot of memories. Along with my family, we use every moment that we can to be here, because it feels like home. Macedonia has a lot of beautiful places that you can visit during the whole year, like my hometown Bitola, Ohrid and Skopje. If I have to pick one spot that is my favorite that would be the pick Tumbe Kafe located in Bitola. This is one of the points from where you can see the entire town, as well as a huge part of Pelagonija.

IWC: How did you come to the idea for the re-branding of InterWorks, i.e. ⋮IWConnect?

There are many reasons for that. We are witnesses of a transitional year for all of us, and we believe this is the year for new beginnings. So, I would say that it was the perfect timing for us to go back to our beginnings, to who we were, how we have developed with time, and set the basis for something even bigger – to create a brand that will be based on our rich past, but will be focused towards the future using digitalization and connectivity. The other aspect is that we are globally unique and our unique values will be easily recognizable on a global scale. In the end, we believed that what we do daily, internally and externally, is not totally revealed with our previous brand and that is why we decided to define ourselves more precisely, i.e. describe exactly how we feel.

IWC: What does the new name mean?

When we got the idea for re-branding and when we were looking at the suggestions, we all agreed that we have to keep something that will remind us of who we were and just add a part that will represent our current and future goals and plans. According to that, the first part of the name or ⋮IW, represents who we were and how we have started (that’s our history), and Connect is who we are now and where we are going. We are a company that builds relationships internally and we are also a company that solves problems, creates new solutions and connects/combines the same in order to enable our partners to unleash their business potential and be the best in the process of achieving their goals.

IWC: What are your plans for the future?

I believe that our story is at its very beginning and our best years, experiences, possibilities and successes are yet to come. We have big ambitions for Macedonia and broader, and hope to become leaders in the IT segment.

IWC: Will ⋮IWConnect move to a new building in Bitola?

The huge expansion in terms of technologies, colleagues, and solutions led us to opening offices in Prilep and Skopje in Macedonia, Amsterdam (Netherlands), Houston (Texas) and our expansion continues in those cities, as well as in Bitola. The office where we are located now, started to be a little small for us, so we bought a new building in Bitola recently. We plan to create something unique out of it, something we will all be proud of, and hopefully, my hometown Bitola, and Macedonia as well will be proud of us too.

IWC: In the end, what makes ⋮IWConnect one of the most successful IT companies in Macedonia?

I would say that is our employees who believe in the mission ⋮IWConnect has set unconditionally, and who contribute to the goals we have determined unconditionally as well, our management team, our partners in the world, as well as the type/size of the problems we solve and the technologies we use.

We are successful because we greet challenges and we see each failure as a great lesson out of which we will learn and become better in the future.