Derick David – CEO Interview

Derick David

Founder & CEO of Hikre

When did you know you wanted to start your own company?

It was right after I watched the movie “The Social Network” in 2015. Just knew it, right there, that one day I can and will be a Mark Zuckerberg.

What was your original idea for this company, and are you still doing that (or did you pivot, if so, what is the new focus and why)?

Our original idea is based upon the idea of Uber of long distance travels where you share a ride with a local to a common destination. Chicago to Minneapolis for instance! A lot of people are carpooling already in the United States, especially in a college environment. However, if you want find a ride, it’s still kinda old school. University campuses still use Facebook groups or sometimes, their social media platforms. We now live in an advanced society with hyper intellectuals in it. It’s not ideal and we can do better. Buses are a thing of the past anyway, no Millennial or college student wants to be in it, unless you’re left with no option. They’re overpriced and it gives you an unsettling travel experience. So we realized we can do what Uber did to taxi, but in our case, to buses.

How long did it take you to finally take the leap, and what was it that pushed you over the fence?

That life is short and we’re going to die anyway!

Who inspired you to pursue your dream, and why do you think they believed in you?

Both my parents did very well to inspire and motivate me to pursue my dream. Growing up, I have watched them hustle hard in their 9 to 5 jobs to give me the life and education I needed. They’ve always told me take risks, aim higher, and be bold. Because of it, I want success in my career as much as I want my next breath!

Who is your favorite mentor and why?

Adriano Farano has been guiding and helping me through the years. He’s a fellow at Stanford University, a successful Silicon Valley entrepreneur who sold his startup to a big media company, and he’s now in Paris building his new bread company. He knows the scene inside and out and I’ve been really glad to have him as my mentor.

What was the hardest thing about starting your company, and what did you do to make it through the first stage?

What to do and when. Starting is one thing, however, you will reach a certain point where you have no idea what is it that you should be doing and what’s the best thing to do next. You can get confused and frustrated! Thanks to Y Combinator, Peter Thiel’s book Zero To One, and my mentor this isn’t a problem anymore. Also, we found that speaking to a startup or business advisor can make a big difference!

What has been the hardest lesson to learn?

That sometimes what’s best for you isn’t what’s comfortable for you. It’s like taking medicine, the taste is bad, but it’s what you need! I always aim to remind myself this lesson every waking day.

What has been the most amazing thing you have experience while running this company?

The experience of speaking in front of a crowd pitching your idea. The feeling is just wonderful! They’re witnessing the early days of a future billion dollar empire!

What is the weirdest thing you have experienced while running this company, and how did you react to it?

Entrepreneurial lifestyle tends to give me a feeling of anxiety, uncertainty, and unknown before and after bedtime. It can be very challenging, depending how you plan and decide to deal with it! It’s no surprised that most entrepreneurs get depressed. It’s like passing through different circles of hell.

What is the best decision you’ve ever made while running this company?

Choosing my co-founders because I believe they’re the right co-founders.

What is the biggest mistake you made while running this company, and why do you think it happened?

Overlooking some fundamental aspects of the company. We learned the hard way!

How has the coronavirus pandemic affected your company?

Coronavirus has enhanced and fueled our mission to make our vision a reality. The pandemic has showed us that the company is needed from this point forward. Especially, more people want to earn extra money and also save money.

What keeps you passionate about your company?

I always loved the idea that when you start a company, you’re not helping only yourself, but you will potentially millions and billions of people! You sacrifice your own personal good for something bigger than each and everyone of us. I believed that I was destined for that kind of life, so I made it my life mission to do whatever means necessary to make that happen. When it comes to our company specifically, we realized that our world is inevitably heading to an environmental catastrophe due to climate change, pollution, and industrialization. So, electric cars and ride sharing services for instance, will be needed in a not so distant future! So what keeps us passionate is that we don’t only make a difference in people’s lives, but in our planet as well!

What daily routine have you developed to help you take care of your mind, body, and soul?

Meditate, Practice gratitude, Read, and Exercise. Repeat everyday.

What one thing would you like people to take away from this interview?

It’s okay to be crazy because sometimes you need be one to be considered genius.