One of our ambitions at the MIC Brussels is to empower girls and women in entrepreneurship and IT. During the next weeks, through the series of portraits “Women, IT & Entrepreneurship”, we will bring in the spotlight inspiring key-actresses of these worlds.We are dedicated to have more women take the step and become successful IT entrepreneurs!
Cathy Pill : Digital transition and entrepreneuship
“I saw the whole evolution of a company”
Cathy Pill is a born-entrepreneur. Pushed to start her own fashion brand after her studies at La Cambre, she learned the job by doing. “I jumped into the entrepreneurial world when I was 24 and had to find out everything by myself” explains Cathy. “I saw the whole evolution of a company. At that time, I was on my own and was surrounded by freelancers”. Later on, like many businesses of the fashion industry, the economic crisis hit her sales and she decided to put her brand on hold.
They gave me many tools to progress with my ideas
“It was a good opportunity to take a break. I was already very interested in the digital transition and took the time to know more about these tools. I noticed that there was a real demand in that sector from bloggers and that we could do many things”. In that vein, Cathy Pill joined the Boostcamp of the Microsoft Innovation Center Brussels in order to better understand how digitalization could help her ideas and to have a more structured approach of entrepreneurship. “It was perfect for me, they gave me many tools to progress with my ideas. In addition of that, I met there my business partner, Sarah”.
Shopally was born
After the Boostcamp, the two entrepreneurs started building their business. Thanks to Sarah’s knowledge in e-marketing and Cathy’s experience in fashion, they built an application that tracks lifestyle’s products online in order for the brands to have a better access to their potential customers. “It was mainly used by influencers like bloggers. Later, in September 2015, we raised funds with Business Angels and Shopally was born. After a bit more than one year of continuous evolution, we have now more than 200 partners” explains Cathy.
A part of my personality
Being an entrepreneur from the very beginning of a career is an uncommon path. However, entrepreneurship has always been the solution that matches Cathy Pills’ life and needs. “That and my family are the two things that make me feel complete. It is not an easy job of course, you always work until late and it is more risky. But it really is part of my personality.” As for the advice she could give to future entrepreneurs, she highlights the willingness to work and to progress. “You should always keep moving and thus not being afraid of obstacles.”