iAsk x China Daily | How Did A Mother Become An Entrepreneur?

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中国日报-曹玉敏

她温柔,因为腹中胎儿的一张照片而走上摄影之路;她果敢,辞掉世界500强企业的高管职务,连续三次创业;她幽默,“我叫大米,就是每天大家都在吃的大米”;她勇猛,“我的项目叫VPhoto,我要做全球最大的即时影像共享平台。”

She is a caring mother who embarked on a photography career because of a picture of the fetus in her womb. She boldly quitted her top management position of a Fortune 500 company and started new businesses three times in arow. She is humorous, “my name is Dami (meaning “rice” in Chinese), which everyone eats every day”. She is ambitious, “my project is called VPhoto, and I want it to become the world’s largest real-time image sharing platform. “

有人把曹玉敏说成是独一无二的女性创业者,她否认,“世界上每个人都是独特的。”

Some people described Cao Yumin as a unique female entrepreneur. She denied, “everyone in the world is unique. “

但在创业死亡率极高的摄影行业,她创立的VPhoto始终稳居即时影像行业第一;八千万张图片,斩获全球最佳创新机构媒体奖;资本寒冬降临,业务上线不到一年时间,相继获得峰瑞资本、青松基金、东方富海、天和文化产业基金和磐石资本投资,融资近亿。

However, in the highly competitive photography industry where few start-ups survive, her VPhoto has secured a top place in the real-time image sector. With eighty million pictures, it has won the global media award for the most innovative organization. During a period of capital crunch, the business received funding from Frees Fund, Qingsong Fund, OFC, Tianhe Cultural Industry Fund and Stone Capital in less than a year after launch, raising nearly 100million yuan.

也有人把曹玉敏形容成摄影行业中的颠覆者,她否认,“自己能力有限,只能给它提速”。

Some described Cao Yumin as a disruptive force of the photography industry; shedenied, “my ability is limited therefore I need to speed up the industry”.

传统摄影行业传输效率很低,客户从拍片到选片需要等待几天。VPhoto的摄影师从按下快门的一刻起,照片到达云端只需10秒,云端修片师在家就可完成人工调图,耗时3~5分钟。通过直播相册链接,用户可根据需求,实现即时传播。曹玉敏把传统摄影传输速度至少提升300倍。

The traditional photography industry is so inefficient that it used to take several days for photographers to shoot and select photos. It only takes 10 seconds for a VPhoto photographer to shoot a picture and send it to the cloud; and it only takes 3 to 5 minutes for a PS expert to edit the photo in the cloud. By connecting to a live photo album, users can enjoy real-time photo broadcasting tailored to their needs. Cao Yumin has increased the efficiency of the traditional photography industry by at least 300 times.

拒绝被定义的曹玉敏,却在不断改变着影像的定义。以往,我们选择用影像记录着过去,她却认为,影像不止是过去,还是活在当下,更是路过未来。

Refusing to be labeled, Cao Yumin is changing the definition of photography. We tend to record the past with images, but she believes images are not only about the past, but also about the present and even the future.

曹玉敏

艾诚:为什么要做一个摄影的平台?

Gloria Ai : Why do you want to build a photography platform?

曹玉敏:首先我是一位妈妈。以前我是连婚纱照都不拍的女人,后来因为孩子的一张照片改变了我的人生。从开始不想要孩子,觉得他影响了我职业晋升,到后来一张照片我留下这个孩子,我重新思考人生,觉得错过的遗憾不能再错过。母爱是初心,由此我进入影像行业。

Cao Yumin: First of all, I am a mother. I used to be a woman who did not even take wedding photos, After getting pregnant, a photo of my child changed my life. At the beginning, I didn’t want a child because I felt he might affect my career. I kept the child because of a photo and then reconsidered my life. I felt sorry for what I thought before. I didn’t want to miss this one again. Maternal love is what brought me to the photography industry.

进入之后,本来只想做小生意,没想做太大,只想开一家小工作室,但可能我是做财务出身的,自然而然地运转这个小business(生意)的时候,它就会自己传播,成长得非常快,从一家变两家、三家,在影像行业里摸爬滚打六年,最后发现它有太多的痛点是我无法忍受的,所以我们就想着去改变。

Initially, I just wanted to do a small business. I didn’t expect it to grow big and just wanted to run a small studio. But maybe it’s because I used to do finance, the business grew naturally. When the business was small, it grew very fast through organic expansion. One studio turned into two, and two turned into three. After working in the image industry for six years, I finally found out it had too many pain points that I couldn’t stand. So we wanted to change them.

艾诚:摄影创业不计其数,但在蜂拥而至地“生”之后,大部分都蜂拥而至地“死”掉。我们意外发现一位做财务的女性创业者领导的VPhoto摄影团队竟然活着,而且还活得还很好,为何?

Gloria Ai: There are numerous photography start-ups. After the frenzy of entrepreneurship, most start-ups fail. We find out by accident there is a female entrepreneur who once worked on finance. Her photography platform called Vphoto has survived. It’s still alive. Why?

曹玉敏:不论做什么事情,我如果认定自己喜欢这个行业,又觉得我有这个能力,我是对的人去做这个行业,其实不太去想这个行业种其他人是活着还是死着,我觉得我能做好,我就去做。

Cao Yumin: No matter what I do, if I think I like the industry and feel I have the ability to do it, I am the right person to do this business. I don’t really think about if others in the industry are alive or not. If I believe I can do it well, I’ll just do it.

艾诚:我听说VPhoto、大米女士正在摄影行业里面掀起一轮革命?

Gloria Ai: I heard that Cao Yumin from Vphoto is starting a revolution in the photography industry?

曹玉敏:不能叫革命,可能叫提速吧。很多人问为什么叫VPhoto,V在物理学符号当中代表速度,我之所以起名VPhoto,就是要给影像行业提速。

Cao Yumin: It can’t be called revolution. Maybe it’s more about speeding up the development of the industry. Many people ask why it is called VPhoto. V is the symbol representing velocity in physics.

因为以前很多人都说你是颠覆者、革命者,我觉得可能有点太偏激,我没有革命摄影行业的power(能量),只能给它提速,但可能我们不是提速几倍,而是300倍,所以整体上看,他会感觉这个行业真是改变好多。

The reason why I named it VPhoto is to speed up the development of the photography industry. Many people said you were a disruptor and a revolutionary, I think it sounds a little too extreme. I don’t think I am someone who has the power to revolutionize the industry. I’m just giving it a push to speed things up. But we make the industry not just several times faster, but 300 times faster than before. So generally speaking, one will feel that the industry has really changed a lot.

艾诚:你会焦虑吗?
Gloria Ai: Are you anxious?

曹玉敏:焦虑倒不至于,但一直都有危机感,因为这已经是我第三次创业了,我们第一次创业的时候很年轻,心比天高,就觉得我要做成世界级。那时候我们做云计算比阿里还早,所以第二次创业的时候就特别接地气,这是第三次。

Cao Yumin: I am not anxious, but I always have a sense of crisis, because this is my third attempt to start a business. When we first started a business, we were young and had very high ambition. I felt my business would become a world-class one. We did cloud computing earlier than Alibaba. When I started my second business, I was more pragmatic. This is my third attempt.

艾诚:你会是个不一样的女人吗?是中国创投圈里不一样的人物吗?

Gloria Ai: In China’s business and investment circles, are you unique?

曹玉敏:每个人都是不一样的,艾诚也是不一样的,你也是非常special(特别)的一个女人。其实不论男女,敢于创业就是最勇敢的。

Cao Yumin: I think everyone is unique. Gloria, you are also unique. You are also a very special woman. No matter women or men, anyone who starts a business is the bravest.

我们第三次创业的时候,当时跟我先生商量:咱要不要做平台,还是说就带着孩子过小日子就很好?以前第二次创业,做小business(生意),每年有三、四个月,我们可以在国外带着孩子度假,就特别的enjoy(享受),后来当你想做成一个平台的时候,我们必须要面临的是什么?在做一件事情之前,我基本已经把最坏的结果想到了。

When we started our third venture, I discussed with my husband about whether we should build a platform or just spend more time with our child. When my second business was small, there were three or four months each year when I can took my child on vacation abroad. I really enjoy it. Later I thought about in building such as platform, what must we face? In fact, before doing one thing, I had basically thought of its worst result.

艾诚:VPhoto最坏的结果是什么?大米创业最坏的结果是什么?

Gloria Ai: What is the worst possible result of VPhoto? What is the worst possible result for my start-up?

曹玉敏:这个事情我没做成,我再回去做财务总监。

Cao Yumin: The worst result is that I failand go back to work as a CFO.

艾诚:一般创业者不敢说出来的,你大声说出来了。

Gloria Ai: This is something most entrepreneurs dare not say. You say it out loud.

曹玉敏:我们当时还盘算家里有几套房子、能拿出多少财产。因为第三次创业的时候,已经实现财务自由,所以没什么后顾之忧。真的是自己真算过的,我和我先生在一张A4纸上,画出最坏的结果是什么,好的是什么,我们应该放弃什么,还有就是,我们可能得到什么机会。最后我们决定,那就往前走吧,无所畏惧。

Cao Yumin: At that time, we also calculated how many houses there were in the family and how much assets we could take out. The third time I started a business, I was basically financially free, so there was nothing to worry about. I really did the calculation myself. My husband and I drew the worst result, the best result, we should give up, and what opportunities we might get on a piece of A4 paper. Finally, we decided to go ahead without fear.

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