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Our Business Story

In the world of entrepreneurship and technology, each founder's story is a fascinating mix of courage, vision and valuable lessons. Today, we will discover MentDrive's business story, a journey full of challenges and successes, through the eyes of its founder, Lucian Ciot. In an exclusive interview, Lucian shares his beginnings in entrepreneurship and the lessons learned over time.

Lucian Ciot, founder of MentDrive, talks about his experience as an entrepreneur and how the MentDrive CMMS solution, maintenance software brings innovation in this field.

How did your journey into the world of entrepreneurship and technology begin?

"The first time I thought about going down the road of entrepreneurship was when I graduated from college, when I set out to make a lot of money and quickly. In 1998, with my young mentality, I conceived the idea of a 100% digitized translation office, convinced that it was the ideal solution. I talked with a friend who recently graduated from the Faculty of Letters with German and English specializations and started to lay the foundations for this project. We imagined an online translation system, with ready-to-translate document templates. The project was a failure. I stopped before I really started and thus learned the first lessons of entrepreneurship.

I have found that there is no path to success without sustained and dedicated effort. Every working day, every obstacle overcome, are important steps in building a solid and sustainable business. Regardless of the difficulties encountered - whether they are contextual or come from the lack of trust of those around me - I have learned that I must move forward and stay true to my vision. Throughout this process, I discovered that genuine success in entrepreneurship is not just about money. It is about solving a problem our society is facing and bringing a positive change. When you dedicate your passion and energy to this goal, the results, including the financial ones, come naturally.”

What was the inspiration behind this product, MentDrive?

“I cultivated my desire to develop my own idea and company in every professional experience I had. But the biggest influence came from my experience at a software company with a strong entrepreneurial culture. There I had the opportunity to learn and develop my non-technical skills as well such as human resource management, sales, communication and public speaking, aspects that I consider essential for an entrepreneur.

When I was still working there, my business partner inspired me with the idea of digitizing the management of maintenance activities. As the owner of a maintenance services company, he was looking for a solution to more efficiently manage his calendar of activities for his clients. Analyzing his situation, we realized that this need can be extended to other maintenance providers.

Since then, we've built MentDrive brick by brick to get to the product it is today.”

What were the main challenges at the beginning of MentDrive and how did you overcome them?

"One of the main challenges was my lack of maintenance know-how. But I was determined and learned along the way, getting guidance from my partner, clients, media sources and attending maintenance courses. All this to understand how to integrate maintenance processes into a software application. It is true that the best teacher remains the customer.

Lack of funding was another challenge. We did not have the necessary financial resources to start the project, so me and my partner turned to our personal financial resources and applied for European funds, to finance the first stages of the development of the application, as well as for promotion or sale.

Another important challenge was handling the first customer. When testing the application on real data, I discovered many elements of the maintenance process that I did not consider or that I developed incorrectly or better said... unrealistically. Our luck was that this client is extremely open-minded and gave us the chance to identify the problems and find the best solutions together."

From your perspective, how does MentDrive contribute to innovation in maintenance?

"Maintenance is a very complex field. That's why a simple but at the same time extremely versatile solution is needed. An application that covers as many practices or fields of activity as possible, without needing too advanced IT knowledge. I think this is the major difference that MentDrive brings and this is confirmed by our customers themselves, who have had previous experiences with other rather complicated maintenance management systems”.

What are the future plans for MentDrive? Are there specific directions in which you want to expand or improve the platform?

"We have two main directions in mind for MentDrive.

First, we want to expand our presence in global markets, with a focus on the America and Asia. We already have ongoing discussions in Asia and hope to finalize these collaborations later this year.

In addition to expanding into new markets, we want to stay in step with global technology trends. We are seeing an increase in interest in artificial intelligence technologies and we intend to move in this direction as well. We want to integrate the MentDrive solution with various advanced technologies to facilitate and improve the results of maintenance activities. These technologies include the integration of monitoring drones applications and various sensors that measure parameters such as temperature, pressure, vibration or consumption.”

So at the end of the interview, what advice would you give to young entrepreneurs or IT professionals?

“I would recommend that they turn their attention to partnerships and collaborations with people who have expertise in the specific field in which they want to grow their business. It is essential to understand that the success of an application or a business is not only due to the technology, but also to a deep understanding of the problems and needs of the field.

From my own experience, I have learned that expertise in maintenance, for example, has been key to the development and success of MentDrive. Without my partner's knowledge and advice, we would not have been able to create such a useful and effective product in the market.

So, I would advise young entrepreneurs to always look to bring real value to their business and not just limit themselves to the technical or financial aspects of their business. It is important to constantly validate solutions and functionalities in the market and be open to feedback and improvements. Thus, they will have a better chance of success in their entrepreneurial journey."

We conclude with the following idea: MentDrive is not just a software solution, but a symbol of perseverance and innovation in the field of maintenance. With a dedicated team and a clear vision, Lucian Ciot and his partners managed to create a product that brings real value in a complex and dynamic field. So for young entrepreneurs and professionals eager to forge their own path in the business world, one piece of advice remains clear: always seek to bring real value to their field of work.



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