Sophie Abrahamovitch – CEO and Co-Founder at DUSK

Sophie Abrahamovitch - CEO and Co-Founder at DUSK


SheCanCode recently caught up with Sophie Abrahamovitch, CEO and Co-Founder at DUSK. We had the privilege of speaking to Sophie about her experience so far as a women working in technology and what challenges she has faced as a female founder.

Introducing the wonderfully entrepreneurial Sophie Abrahamovitch, CEO and Co-Founder at DUSK.

How did you get into tech?

I’d always been really interested in great digital products but my path into tech wasn’t straight-forward. I

had worked in bars before and throughout uni and loved it. After graduation, I ended up in finance – but deep down knew it wasn’t the right fit for me – until I met my co-founder and we began to discuss the idea of DUSK. All my friends were constantly messaging me asking where to go out that night in London. There just wasn’t anything out there that showed you the best bars – at least no app either of us wanted to use or spoke to us as 20-somethings. I loved tech and I loved nightlife, so we set about building something cool and innovative. I initially kept up my day job in finance. I eventually left to work on DUSK full-time and never looked back.

What is it about tech that you love?

Birdseye view of a woman typing on a desk with a plant and glasses

Slick, innovative tech is my favourite thing and I find the detail and care that goes into creating a new product so exciting. I love that get-stuck-in attitude at start-ups, especially those weeks before a new feature or launch where it’s all hands on deck and everyone is working crazy hours. There’s no better feeling than pushing the button to release.

What’s been your career highlight so far?

2020 has been a hell-scape for hospitality but we started the year on a major high and hope to see in the coming New Year with a bang. We kicked off the year on the back of a huge campaign that saw DUSK popping up on billboards in London and Brighton. Seeing our name up in lights at Old Street was a real pinch-me-moment. Then we hit half a million drinks redeemed which was a huge milestone for us. Looking ahead, I think we’ve got a real ace up our sleeve once lockdown is over. We’re currently finalising our amazing new rewards scheme: every time our users drink at hundreds of partner bars they’ll get points and cash back to redeem against some of the coolest brands and experiences out there.

What challenges have you faced as a Female Founder?

Raising money can be incredibly tough. I, like many other Female Founders, can be cautious or conservative in my approach to running the business. I think that is absolutely a positive thing – and it’s why I’ve seen DUSK survive over the years where others in the same sphere have failed. It’s not that I’m risk-averse, I just don’t value ‘growth for growth’s sake’. It can be hard to make a splash on the funding circle with that approach but you just need to have faith that your product is good and that your path is the right one.

On a more positive note – what tangible advice/guidance would you give to aspiring female founders?

Don’t let the thought of a ‘male-dominated tech industry’ spook you. This isn’t the corporate world; you don’t need a certain kind of persona to succeed. Let people see the real you and as a woman use the fact that you stand out to your advantage. But you’ve got to back it up with an inside-out knowledge of your product. Become an expert in whatever you’re working on and people will always take you seriously.

What does career success look like to you?

For me, career success is about running my company so that it’s profitable, innovative and doing it with a great team around me that love coming to work (or Zoom) each day.

Woman typing on a laptop

What’s the most exciting thing about tech right now in your mind?

I think the hospitality industry will take some @me to recover from the effects of COVID-19 but it’s a robust industry and things will hopefully bounce back. I’m most excited about the changes we’re going to see as a result: the use of apps, contactless service, digital booking systems. It’ll be great to be a part of a long overdue shift? to a smarter, tech-savvy way of going out.

What would you tell your younger, more junior self – with hindsight?

I’d probably tell myself to just listen to my gut and follow my instinct because there’s a lot of hot air telling you what you can and can’t do – most of it unhelpful – so just get your head down and get the job done.

Do you have any advice for women in tech on the importance of a network and how to build it?

There are some great established networks out there but I don’t think we should overlook the importance of our personal networks. It’s so important, both on a professional and personal level. Over the years, I’ve sourced advice from my friends on everything from strategy to financials to branding – absorbing their experience. Don’t be afraid to admit where you need help, then make sure you go out there and do something about it.


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