Bonnie Roupé, founder of Bonzun, talks to us about the award winning pregnancy health app.

Bonzun is a pregnancy app, designed to give early warning signs of health complications by using your own medical test results (blood pressure, bloods, urine etc) and checking symptoms to flag any potential issues. The information it gives pregnant mums relates to what their body is actually doing and allows them to monitor their own health, day to day, throughout their term. Founder, Bonnie Roupé tells us more.

I came up with the idea when... I was pregnant with my second child. Bonzun was directly inspired by a health problem I had while I was pregnant. It was incredibly stressful feeling unwell during pregnancy, not knowing if it was normal or a deadly condition and being unable to find any helpful information online in the comfort of my own home.

The biggest challenge is... that the day only has twenty-four hours.

The average day is spent... dealing with hacker attacks, following up the latest user acquisition activities and planning for new ones, brainstorming new features, analysing our users’ behaviour, talking to investors, meeting with potential partners.

The team consists of... myself, Bonnie Roupé, Yinwei Shen, Shengwei Zhao, Henrik Sjöberg and Anish Tamrakar. We are from Sweden, China and Nepal - a truly global team.

My favourite quote... "If you want to run with the big dogs, you can’t pee like a puppy.”

I am where I am today because... I have always trusted my gut feeling, no matter how strange, or outside the box, or unconventional it may be.

I am who I am because of... my chaotic but wonderful childhood. I learned how to cook for myself as a six-year-old, and moved away from home and supported myself when I was fifteen. This really gave me the foundation, strength and courage to create my own life and realise any vision I may have.

The best advice I've been given... “Never underestimate yourself just because everyone else does.”

In five years I’d like to be... the person who has made the biggest positive impact on the health of pregnant women in history.

The thing no one ever tells you about running your own business online... That you will get questions you don’t know how to answer, by people working outside the online world, who still define business in an old fashion way. Like: ”Where is your office?” ”Where are you based?” ”How many people do you have employed?” I have to bite my tongue not to answer ”Who cares?” to all those questions. Why does it matter where we are based? I’m in Stockholm now, my CTO is in Nepal, my COO is in Shanghai but last week we met in Beijing. And Bonzun has users in UK, US, Brazil, United Arab Emirates (besides China, where we first launched).

Our biggest mistake and what it taught us... Bonzun had a tech team based in Shanghai, and another team in Nepal. We decided to move all development to Nepal, because they were faster, cheaper and better. Little did we know there would be an earthquake. Our Nepalese staff had to evacuate their homes and the city was left in ruins. Our iPhone version was delayed, and fact is, our developers had to live in tents. And even after the shakes, the infrastructure in Nepal is ruined so there are power cuts eighteen hours a day. And you know, electricity is pretty important for writing code... What we learned from this was two things: business risks can sometimes include things like forces of nature, however unlikely it may seem. Secondly, our brilliant staff are highly dedicated and loyal, so we could overcome this. We just lost a lot of time. We are now moving the team to Sweden, which is a safer and more stable place to have a headquarter. And it has brought us closer together.

The most rewarding experience we’ve had to date... When Bonzun was nominated top Mobile and Internet App in Beijing, China. For us, it was a big deal getting attention from the Chinese tech industry, and a validation that our service is unique and needed.

April 2016