Makonews Wojciech Zieliński Soda Hero 4280X3287
6 min. read News

MakoLab at
SoDA Conference 2022

Next week, MakoLab is off to the city of Wrocław in south-west Poland for the 2022 Software Development Association Poland (SoDA) conference. The event is designed for representatives of the IT industry and other organisations associated with Poland’s technology sector. What does it have in store for the attendees this year? The answer to that is… two days filled with talks, discussion panels and excellent networking opportunities.
This year’s SoDA conference, which is entitled Facing Reality. What do global crises teach us?, focuses on crucial questions affecting Polish software houses, such as EU funding for IT, market turbulence, sales models in times of crisis and staff shortages.
One of the panel discussions, What are the benefits of being listed on the stock exchange and how do we take a company there?, will feature MakoLab CEO Wojciech Zieliński.
We talked to him briefly about the upcoming event, asking him not only about the topic he will be addressing, but also about MakoLab’s place in an organisation like SoDA and the need for Poland’s IT community to integrate. We hope you enjoy reading what he had to say.
Software Development Association Poland brings together almost two hundred technology companies and is currently organising another conference focused on integrating and educating representatives of Polish software houses like MakoLab. Why do you think initiatives like this are important?
Wojciech Zieliński: Poland is a powerful point on the map of the global IT industry. First and foremost, our IT experts are excellent and the biggest players on the market are making the most of their knowledge and skills. Even more important, though, is the fact that Polish IT is a constantly growing business sector. We compete successfully on the global market, with MakoLab being the best example of that.

For that trend to continue, we have to move on from working on the basis of ‘everyone for themselves’. We need to collaborate, sharing our know-how, experience and resources and even taking on collaborative projects.

We’re only competitors outwardly. The global market is still capacious enough for there to be room for everyone. In my opinion, collaboration strengthens us and enables us to compete effectively with foreign companies. It also gives us a better negotiating position with clients and investors.
This will be your second time at the SoDA conference. What do like and value about events like this?
I really like what goes on behind the scenes. Above all, it’s an opportunity to explore what people are doing and talk about it. Last year, I went to quite a number of similar events and I was surprised more than once by the niches and business models that other people were operating within. It’s a chance to discuss how we’re coping with challenges like remote working and rising pay in the sector. The talks at those events were first class and they addressed topics that are vital to us. And finally, there was the small talk that went on during the integrative get-togethers in the evenings. That’s a fine way of spending time in the company of interesting people.
Microsoftteams Image (687)
It’s often emphasised that membership of organisations like SoDA and taking part in the events they hold is an excellent networking opportunity. How true is that?
Well, I’ve already touched on the representatives of the SoDA membership, in other words, software houses. What I can add is that we talk to each other honestly. For instance, if the topic under discussion is entering a particular market, then the people who are already on that market will talk openly about what went well for them and what needs to be avoided… even though they’re passing on their knowledge and experience to potential competitors.

SoDA has also developed a formal field for collaboration, the ‘SoDA Bench’. It’s a platform for sharing information and hiring experts who are currently only available from one member and not from any of the others. Conferences are also a place for networking with first-class experts in various non-IT fields, like sales and HR, for instance. At one conference last year, we got to know a speaker who was a representative of a consultancy company. As a result of that encounter, we started collaborating with the company.
This year, you’re taking part in a panel discussion, What are the benefits of being listed on the stock exchange and how do we take a company there? Can I ask, somewhat perversely, if you’re happy with the choice of panellists? Does the discussion promise to be fruitful?
To answer, also somewhat perversely, I’d say that the evaluation of the panel members, including me, will be done by the audience. Financing is currently a hot topic in our sector, which is growing and needs money for investment. There are numerous sources of financing available at the moment and the stock exchanges are one of them. Myself and two of the other panellists are representatives of companies listed on NewConnect* . We’ve already exchanged thoughts and it’s clear that our companies floated their shares at different times, and for different purposes. Our experiences vary, we represent a range of views and so none of us has the same answer to the titular question.

Our panel boasts a major asset in the presence of Marek Dietl, the CEO of the Warsaw Stock Exchange. I’m sure he’ll verify our thoughts on being listed on the public market and have valuable information to offer everyone who is considering obtaining financing from the stock exchange.
Which talks and panel discussions on this year’s programme interest you in particular?
Going by the titles, they all look very interesting. As the CEO of MakoLab, the biggest challenge I’m facing at the moment is finding and keeping high-quality staff. I don’t think I’m alone in that, either, given that there are going to be several talks and discussions on the subject. So I’ll certainly be happy to hear about keeping staff members on board, about their future in the field of IT and about managing scattered teams, not to mention ‘how not to employ an IT developer’. Apart from all that, I always listen carefully to presentations on trends. There are two on this year’s programme; one will be dealing with business trends and the other will be looking at IT in 2025.
*The Software Development Association Poland (SoDA) was founded in 2018. It currently brings together almost two hundred companies, with Polish and foreign capital, operating within Poland. It is an association of technology companies which create software and provide a wide range of IT outsourcing services for clients all over the world. SoDA aims to integrate the Polish sector and its operations by supporting its international development.
*Founded in August 2007, NewConnect is organised and operated by the Warsaw Stock Exchange outside the regulated market as an alternative trading system. It was developed for young dynamic Polish companies which need equity in order to tap into the potential of innovation. Source:, retrieved on 20.09.2022.
Thursday 22ndSeptember 2022
Aleksandra Wesołowska 2
Aleksandra Wesołowska
Marketing Specialist