Transforming Stock Trading Into A Social Experience: A First Person Perspective by TradingView COO Stan Bokov
The idea for TradingView came when we realized that both amateur and professional traders needed a place to talk to one another in real-time, using reliable charts and data tools. Lots of web sites had charts, data tools or both but none were truly social.
TradingView is at the front of Social Fintech - the first combination of a free online financial platform and social capabilities to interact with other traders. It’s a research and blogging platform for financial markets, where over 500,000 investors from over 100 countries share ideas every month.
TradingView is fundamentally changing and improving how financial information is viewed and used. We believe TradingView will do to financial charting what YouTube did to video sharing - make it simple and easy to the interested audience, and become the worldwide standard.
Anyone can grab free charts with financial market data for their site in under a minute. Our cloud infrastructure can easily handle hundreds of thousands of users, which is needed because we are seeing 10-15 percent monthly organic growth. And our investors can trust that infrastructure because it uses Microsoft products.
New technologies – primarily HTML5 and the cloud – are the keys to our current success. Microsoft has expertise in building scale, building various types of teams, choosing appropriate software solutions or launching in different global regions. That kind of experience can and needs to be leveraged in order to succeed; we took advantage of it in any way we could, including joining BizSpark.
Being a BizSpark member has been essential for us. We bootstrapped TradingView for about two years until we proved the concept; the free software and access to Azure through BizSpark helped us build what we needed in order to impress users and investors.
Another thing that helped our business was applying to Techstars. We attended TechStars Chicago and were able to show off TradingView to more than 500 investors during our Demo Day. We raised so much convertible debt that we had to stop accepting investors!
We planned for large scale from day one because our business plan has always assumed global reach. We needed a readily available and scalable infrastructure, coupled with attractive pricing and, of course, 24x7 support. Starting with a Microsoft sponsored perk for Techstars companies made Azure an easy choice for us. With Azure, we have more than 100 virtual machines (VM) that handle our backend, data server and frontend needs. We can even add VMs with no actions required from our end if we suddenly get a spike in users.
I've always wanted to do something in life that didn't feel like work. That's how running a startup feels to me - I love it because I am eager to see an idea become reality. I would caution other startup founders to find a good work/life balance as early as possible in the process though. If you catch yourself working around the clock, make a change - Increased hours don't necessarily improve productivity. Enjoy what you do, build for scale and the revenue will come.
Microsoft is helping these startups succeed through its BizSpark program. To join or see other startup stories, visit us at our website here. To listen to our startups, check out these podcasts on devradio here.
About BizSpark: Microsoft BizSpark is a global program that helps startups succeed by giving free access to Microsoft Azure cloud services, software and support. BizSpark members receive up to $750 per month of free Microsoft Azure cloud services for 3 years: that’s $150 per month each for up to 5 developers. Azure works with Linux and open-source technologies such as Ruby, Python, Java and PHP. BizSpark is available to startups that are privately held, less than 5-years-old and earn less than $1M in annual revenue.