How has your career helped you with setting up your start-up?

My career was the reason for founding AECA. The business founded by me is in great need to bring together all the actors of online commerce because the challenges are bigger than a single company. Considering that I don’t give up until I reach my goals, this was the next step to take in this journey.

What have been some of the biggest challenges for you?

My day is full of challenges just like any entrepreneur’s. If I could highlight the biggest challenges they are:

  • Dealing with e-commerce partners. The company I manage has over 400 partners and while the information era requires the digitization of business, this mindset is still a bit far in Albania. For this reason, we encounter daily difficulties in our relations with them;
  • Building a strong team, this is because Albania lacks expertise in this industry and everyone needs to be trained constantly;
  • The biggest challenge is that our industry is a chain of jobs that each drastically impacts the final quality that we give to the consumer at the end.

What have been some of the biggest wins of your engagement?

In my business we have had many victories, we were the first company to integrate purchases with the ‘buy with 1 click’ button, we were the first company to integrate online installment sales.

Meanwhile, with the association, even though in less than 1 year of work, we have had a lot of impact in the industry. We have influenced the Ministry of Finance to create a working group, where we are involved, to build the plan of the Albanian state regarding online trade. We have started the process of building a ‘Trust Mark’ which will differentiate serious businesses from the rest. We have 50 companies that are part of the association, even though the first year of operation has not yet passed.

What are some of the specific needs of AECA?

We are ranked really low in Europe for the percentage of the population that buys online. We also have a very high level of informality and the task of the association is to maximally influence the formalization of this market. Also training and developing entrepreneurs in this new industry is critical.

Why did you choose Tirana to establish and grow your business?

Tirana is the country with the most operators in this industry, but it is also the place where the distributors and other partners of this industry are. Although the consumer is distributed throughout Albania, the economic center of this sector is Tirana.

What are AECA’s objectives for the next 3-5 years?

We want to help 10-fold the online sales market in Albania. We want to have an autonomous association that generates income to provide continuous results for the businesses it represents. We also want to be the leading association in the region to unite the entire region in cooperation with other associations to set the same standards everywhere, but also to help Albanian companies expand and do business throughout the region.