Eero Pikat talks redesigns, data and world-class champagne!

Barchart’s President Eero Pikat talks redesigns, data and world-class champagne!

Barchart and I have a history of sorts. Albeit a rather short one, Barchart and sub-brand InsideFutures; were two of the first sites I…

Barchart and I have a history of sorts. Albeit a rather short one, Barchart and sub-brand InsideFutures; were two of the first sites I started guest blogging on many moons ago.

Meeting the team at their recent FinTech Exchange 2016 event in Chicago a few weeks ago, was to be honest; a little sentimental.

I felt quite proud of myself all these years later, to be sitting around a dinner table with Barchart’s team and other industry leaders, sipping a world-class glass of champagne (or six, I mean; who’s counting anyway).

It turns out that they are the coolest bunch of folk who are pumping out amazing products, who love a good time and know how to get things done. With a very loyal user base and some amazing brands under their umbrella, I sat down with Barchart’s President, Eero Pikat to discuss what’s coming next.

As a side note, my iPhone believed Eero to be quite the industry example and embarrassingly enough auto-corrected his name to Euro on one of our email exchanges. Nice.

What’s new?

We’ve got a lot of projects we’re working on. We’re about to launch a complete redesign of our flagship website, www.barchart.com. We’ve been working very hard on that for close to a year now.

What we’ve found is that rebuilding a site is a lot of work for a site that’s been in continual development for a decade. There’s just a tonne of content that needs to be re-engineered.

We’re also on phase two of our launch of grains.com, adding in order matching for OTC grains. We’re continually building our universe of cash grain data.

We’ve rolled out a lot of great features, like free text alerts, and are really excited about this product.

OK, so nobody is perfect. What is the biggest thing you can improve on from last year?

Project Management and focus has been a key concern for us starting Q3 of 2015. We were starting to take on too many projects, and were starting to lose focus simply because we didn’t have the resources needed to support such a large project load.

We are much closer to launching our products now, largely due to a series of organizational restructures that have immensely helped our productivity.

Funniest thing/ incident that happened in the office? Any cringe / epic fail moments?

Well, let’s just say that on Fridays, we start drinking champagne, the real stuff, around 3 in afternoon. By 5pm, there’s lots of cringe worthy moments, every week.

If we were sitting here in one year from now having this conversation, what is the biggest thing you would hope to have achieved?

A year from now, if we can help revolutionize the way that producers market and sell their grain, I would consider that an immense success.

Even if the market structure remains largely like it is today, I think that in a year, there will still be a significant number of farmers and grain merchandisers using our platform, and that would be great.

I really think that we can help bring the agricultural community into the modern world, in terms of grain marketing.

Currently they’re using a call around market, things are still done on paper, and the shoebox, for many, is the standard storage container for records and receipts.

This has got to change, and I hope that we can lead that change.

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