Yair Flicker, the founder of software-development company SmartLogic, and Henry van Wagenberg, Flicker’s latest hire, are old drinking buddies. Van Wagenberg actually credits the foreign expansion of SmartLogic, which just opened an office in Berlin, Germany, to Baltimore’s bar scene.
“Yair and I used to be drinking buddies at Spirits Tavern in Fells Point,” he said. “Yair did a search through his Gmail records, and we first met at Dionysus in 2010. So you could say that SmartLogic‘s international expansion is the product of Baltimore’s great tradition of corner bars.”
Van Wagenberg is the first employee of SmartLogic’s new office in Berlin and the 13th employee hired by the Canton-based company. He’ll work from the coworking space Betahaus.
While there are no firm plans yet of how many developers will be hired in SmartLogic’s Berlin-based office, founder Flicker announced last week that van Wagenberg will be in charge of hiring Berlin-based developers in a move to take SmartLogic’s client-footprint international.
“Berlin has a really exciting and growing startup environment,” Flicker said. “Working with clients and developers from Berlin will bring a new and valuable perspective to our team here in Baltimore.”
SmartLogic has been working with foreign clients, from countries such as Israel, Singapore and France, in the past. But Berlin, van Wagenberg said, is the place to be.
“I see an opportunity here in Berlin. Some people are calling Berlin the ‘Silicon Valley of Europe,’ and it’s all so new,” he said. “There is a shortage of really experienced, professional development teams.”