This week, we had the opportunity to speak with Arseniy Seroka, the CEO of Serokell. We discussed their beginnings, the mission of the company, and how Arseniy envisions the future of the industry.
Please present Serokell to our audience.
Serokell is an R&D agency with focus on FinTech, BioTech, and machine learning solutions. People come to us for a solution to a specific problem. We usually take tasks from the field of computer science. That is to say that we don’t just make websites, but choose something related to algorithms, distributed systems, and machine learning. Websites or applications can be tasks that we take on but the main challenge for us is always in the backend development.
What we are best at is creating innovative solutions for complex problems. For example, we have worked as one of the selected teams at the TQ Tezos project, which is an open-source blockchain platform for smart contracts. Serokell also got ahead of almost 70 developer teams in a smart contract contest organized by TON and got the first prize.
Our team is composed of developers, designers, engineers, computer scientists, and mathematicians, and this diversity of expertise and skills helps us satisfy almost any request of our potential clients.
Please describe the story behind the company: What sparked the idea, and how has it evolved so far?
The company was founded in 2015 by Jonn Mostovoy and me. There were several factors that influenced the idea to start a company: I could not work in an office, did not want to work for someone else, and loved the programming language Haskell very much. I could not find a remote job in this programming language, even today it’s still rather exotic. Once, when talking with Jonn, we came up with an idea to make our projects together and divide the money. And so it went. In 2-3 months, we had already hired the first employee.
The first two years we worked on word of mouth, and then we got a marketing department to help us communicate with clients. Now we’re among the first companies that come to mind when somebody mentions functional programming. Today we have more than 60 people working for us remotely from different cities and countries. The company itself is registered in Estonia.
We initially understood that we would work with international clients, and having a legal entity in Europe makes it easier to organize. Now we’re thinking about opening an entity in the United States as well because most of our clients are located there. In addition, it’s more convenient to hire employees from all over the world this way.
What services do you offer?
We provide turnkey software development solutions for high-load industries. However, we can also work by a dedicated team model helping businesses that already have in-house developers to augment their teams. Our stack consists of functional programming languages that are reliable and scalable such as Haskell, Rust, and Nix. There are several key industries that we focus on, but we are glad to go beyond those if the project is a good challenge. We also provide technical audit, system optimization, and design services.
What is the mission of Serokell?
Make great things happen. We aren’t afraid of challenges; we welcome them. And we work hard to improve at every step of the way, be it coding, recruitment, communication.
Another big mission of Serokell is to empower young scientists and create a space where young talented people can work on motivating projects. At the company, we try to engage in projects that will be respected in the engineering and scientific fields, so that we do not just work for money.
And now that we have grown up, I realized that I want to help the guys who altruistically decided to go into science. So we have been sponsoring the computer laboratory for a long time based at the ITMO university along with such companies as JetBrains, Yandex, Mail.ru Group, and Tinkoff.
We also provide a good stipend for talented students of ITMO university to help them pursue their studies.
What separates you from other similar websites/companies?
At Serokell, we have top-tier programmers, including PhDs in computer science and mathematics, winners of international programming olympiads, university professors, and speakers at various conferences. A team of such a level as ours is very difficult to assemble, especially considering how programmers are hunted now. So we are always in demand. People come to us with difficult tasks, because they know that we will cope with them like no one else.
Serokell website, in particular, Serokell blog is also our big passion project. We’re proud of our blog where our in-house engineers contribute on the topics of functional programming, quantum computing, machine learning, and computer science.
This year, we have been called the best blog in machine learning by Invision app and the best blog in computer science by FeedSpot. We also have been invited to provide media coverage for events like Web Summit, World Summit, and Women’s Forum. We have an active community of readers around the blog, which I also see as a big accomplishment. I don’t think a lot of companies produce educational content of this quality.
Moreover, we also regularly interview experts working with Haskell, Rust, and other programming languages, ML and AI, both in our blog and for our YouTube channel. We’re also launching our own podcast soon, don’t miss out!
How do you envision the future of your industry?
Software engineering as a field, obviously, has a lot of potential, and I don’t think that will change in the near future. New exciting technologies continuously appear, and that means more and more smart people will use them to create products and services that change the world. Serokell and other outsourcing companies will help them realize their dreams.