Derek is joined again by Diego Jose Ramos. In this episode, they talked about Diego’s company which is Horsepower PH. They also briefly touched on Diego’s experience doing hackathons in the Philippines.
- Diego’s company which is Horsepower PH was borne out of the need for contract workers to have health care support in the Philippines.
- Diego’s company is targeting freelancers from freelancing sites.
- Horsepower PH was designed to address the gap in the market; to offer healthcare services to freelancers since most of them are only paid with the base pay without the benefits. So, for employers to retain these kinds of employees, employers from the U.S. or Europe or Australia needed to articulate benefits on their contracts. So that’s where Horsepower comes in as a company
- Diego started attending hackathons because he was a tech recruiter and he needed a lot of CVs but eventually, he started to enjoy attending hackathon events.
- Diego said that from what he’s heard Facebook has hackathons every week and Google also have hackathons quite frequently.
- Prizes motivate participants in each hackathon. Prizes could range from cash to BizSpark account to laptops. Derek even contributed according to Diego.
- Tinder came from a hackathon in Texas and Spotify came from a hackathon in Tel Aviv.
- According to Derek, there’s huge potential in hackathons. It can be used as a problem-solving machine.
- Philippines healthcare is similar to US healthcare
- There are different themes when it comes to hackathons. It could be a travel hackathon, lifestyle hackathon or a fashion hackathon.
- Hackathons can be utilized as problem-solving exercises.
- Spotify and Tinder started from hackathons.
- [email protected]
Hello, my name’s Derek Gallimore and this is another episode of the Outsource Accelerator podcast. This is episode number 54. And today we are joined again by Diego Jose Ramos. So, I’ve actually interviewed Diego a couple of times before. I believe on episode 36 and 42, if you haven’t listened to those they’re great episodes talking about the tech scene and community here. So, today I’m discussing a little bit about Diego’s company which is called horsepower PH, And that was borne out of the need of contract workers needing health care support here because in the Philippines health care is a privatized service like in the US. So, what it, how is that relevant to you that’s actually relevant because a lot of these. Well he’s specifically targeting freelance contractors. So that is the huge and growing army of home based workers that thrive from the Freelancer community, thrive from the Upwork community. And you know all of these freelancer sites that are popping up means that there’s now thousands of people sitting in their homes earning a fantastic income. But there is a gap in the market there because they couldn’t get the health care they needed easily. So, Diego came up with that so that is the relevance to you. So, because maybe many of you use the Upwork and Freelancer and things like that. We then go on and talk about Diego’s Hackathon experience. I’ll let you obviously listen to the podcast but there’s fantastic insight into the opportunities with hackathons and you know I really think you guys the entrepreneurs out there should put your thinking caps on in terms of how hackathons can be harnessed. There’s really huge potential. So, enjoy this episode if you want any of the show notes if you want to get in touch with Diego please go to our website which is outsourceaccelerator.com/podcast/episode54.
Derek: Hi everyone and welcome back today again. I’ve got to Diego Jose Ramos with me. Hi Diego. How are you?
Diego: Hi Derek. I’m good. Thank you.
Diego: How are you?
Derek: I’m great, I’m great as always. So, I’m really grateful for you to join us again. As I’ve mentioned we actually have two previous episodes with Diego. So, I encourage you to check this out.
Diego: Glad to be here.
Derek: And yeah so, I wanna talk to you a little bit about your tech journey Diego and how funnily enough that ties in with outsourcing and possibly a lot of the freelancers that a lot of our audience interact with or use. So, you, I mean I’ll let you take off from here. But you launched a company called horsepower PH.
Diego: Yes. Yes. I think in reference to our earlier topic Derek. I think we mentioned that the Philippines is really the cradle for outsourcing with a rising amount of freelancers or people working from home. I think, we designed a company that would answer those needs as they gain more and more income their needs go higher so they needed provide health care for their families. So, we designed Horsepower to be a company for solo entrepreneurs for freelancers and startups. And that’s how we came about that gap. Because if you go in, if you’re in the Philippines this is still an out-of-pocket market industry for healthcare. So, we managed the gap and putting the gap together.
Derek: Yeah. I think it’s a fantastic product and just to put that in context for the audience. The Philippines very similar to the US is a private healthcare kind of environment and typically the healthcare cover comes with their employment. So, I think Diego you’ve found a gap in the market where there’s a hugely growing sector where there’s a lot of freelancers and these are the sort of people that you’re finding on Upwork and freelancers et cetera. And there’s a gap in the market because they don’t get the same healthcare and you came out with a product to serve that need. Is that?
Diego: Right. Designed for them. Because normally Derek, the contract when they are hired by these companies in the U.S. They just have a base salary without benefits. So, for them to you know as to retain these kinds of employees I think the employers from the U.S. or Europe or Australia needed to articulate benefits on their contract. So that’s where we come in as a company Horsepower PH.
Derek: Fantastic. Well done. And so, you actually went. I don’t want to go into the financials necessarily but you actually pitched this? Is that correct? And you won a series of pitches with the product?
Diego: Yes. Yeah. No. Yes. We have experiment in starting this one we have different experience on how to go around it. That’s why it’s called Horsepower. Started them in the heel of the horse. HR outsourced services this is how it’s being built on of course. Yeah. And we’ve been recognized by companies like we won here in Manila in 1 7 6 7 7 6 ventures and our recent recognition was from the arena like an Asia Jakarta as one of the revered startups well nation. Now thank you for having me, asked me to tell that.
Derek: Yeah, Yeah, Yeah. No absolutely. It’s fantastic to get recognized. And also, it is a nice environment to have these institutions that do recognize these things. And I suppose in a segue way to that you have been involved in the hackathon scene in Manila for some years now.
Derek: What are your reflections on that? Is that a positive and growing sector?
Diego: Yes. Derek, to be honest, I started hackathon, doing hackathon. It’s really self-serving kind of need because I was a tech recruiter and I needed a lot of CVs on my table. So that’s why I started doing hackathon and in the middle of doing it I enjoyed actually doing hackathons. Different themes we’ve done travel hackathons, we’ve done hack the climate. I think that’s one of our most publicized hackathon ever that came up from the Philippines and recently we have done again Angel hack. It actually started in San Francisco and has moved to two other 33 countries around the world. As well I think a hackathon is an essential component to every company because you know they say the definition of a hackathon is actually getting into account or translating an idea to a technology that seemingly being impossible to a possible viable business. So, this is just a basic the basis for hackathon. So, I think that every company not just a startup should do hackathons in their company. From what I heard Facebook this hackathon is a company like every week so that they will know what comes up from these hackathons internally what project comes out from another Facebook product. Google does hackathons left and right as well. I think it’s a very essential component for every company to happen for companies to move forward in terms of innovation and you know keeping up with the times.
Derek: Yeah. Would you see because a lot of our audiences they’re interested in outsourcing? Any business owner has problems they want solved. Do you think it’s an appropriate environment or opportunity for foreign people to commission a hackathon in the Philippines and you know maybe get 10 or 20 teams try and sort out a problem that they have?
Diego: Yes of course. Definitely. I’ll tell you a story how on a hackathon, I got this email from just from guys junior students at Princeton University four years ago. They wanted to do a hackathon for the environment. And when I told them about the format that I could possibly work with them they made it into a thesis that gained a prize for Davis for peace and they came here for that. And we called that Hack the climate. I mean it’s a hackathon’s design to address adaptation and resiliency in terms of climate change. Every hackathon can be specific, a travel hackathon, a lifestyle hackathon, a fashion hackathon. It’s needed to develop new ideas and are put it into innovation.
Derek: Right, yeah. That’s a fantastic opportunity, isn’t it? Because you could not incubate a problem but you could basically set a problem to be solved and it’s then solved via effectively a prize award. Is that what motivates the participants?
Diego: The prizes can range from cash to a BizSpark Account or a laptop. It can range. You gave the price before in my hackathon, Derek. Thank you very much. I think you gave gift certificates.
Derek: I believe I did actually. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Diego: Thank you for that.
Derek: Was that a hospitality one was it.
Diego: It was a travel hackathon.
Derek: Okay. Fantastic. You know there’s huge opportunity. Thank you very much. I think this hackathon thing has huge potential and I’m really excited by it and it would be interesting if maybe we could have a hackathon to figure out just how amazing hackathons could end up. It could actually become a problem-solving machine.
Diego: Yeah there are a lot of apps that develop from hackathons. I told you Spotify was an app that came up from a hackathon in Tel Aviv
Derek: Ah, right. Right
Diego: Tinder was a hackathon that came up in Texas. So, it’s really one of the biggest dating app and music app we have there in the market. So, I think we should do more and more hackathons to find out an innovation through tech that could solve a problem.
Derek: Fantastic. That’s great. Thank you, Diego.
Diego: Thank you.
Derek: That’s fantastic insight and I’ve really enjoyed this, so thank you for your time. And if people want to get in touch with you for any reason and I’ll put this in the show notes. But how can I get in touch with you.
Diego: Thank you just reach me through my email that’s [email protected]
Okay. Hope you learnt a lot there. Diego’s really a wealth of knowledge in terms of the tech scene and hackathons. If you want any of the show notes or get in touch with Diego, go to our website which is outsourceaccelerator.com/podcast/episode54. And if you want to ask us anything. Send us questions and we will gladly answer them for you. Just email us at [email protected]