Eduardo Feldman, The Entrepreneur Behind the Lens

by Méryl AssayagTech It Forward.

What a wonderful experience we had meeting with the travel photographer, entrepreneur, CEO and soon to be dad, Eduardo Feldman. This passionate photographer, whose pictures have been featured twice on National Geographic front page (!), shared with us how Covid-19 made him pivot his startup Phloc from #traveltech to #edutech.

We would love to hear and learn about your background, where do you come from? What do you do?

Upon completing my degree, I worked in HR for 6 years, until one day, I decided to go wild and start my own company in Mexico - Fotopaseos. My company provided photography tours in Mexico City to tourists, and as it grew it escalated to organized photography trips to the northern lights in Canada, New York, Chicago, Cuba, Patagonia and more.

My entire marketing and sales operations were through my Facebook page. It was like a normal travel agency but specifically for photographers. Back then, this concept was really innovative, unique and new!

How was that first experience as an entrepreneur? is your first company here in Israel. Could you tell us a bit more about it?

As an entrepreneur, I needed to hire people and build my team. The skills I got while working in HR helped me a lot. I’m very happy with my team and their performance.

In total we are 6, all new Olim (new immigrants). I’m not sure if this is a coincidence or not. To tell you the truth, I think that olim hadashim are here because they left everything behind, and for me this is a very important statement of personal strength and character.

What was the activity of your company before Covid?

But things happen for a reason and pivoting and readjusting is important. For the moment, the tours and the concept of travel photographers marketplace is on hold. However, I think we are very lucky because what we’re doing now is something new and important.

That’s interesting! How did you adapt your concept to the current situation?

Photography changed significantly in the last 20 years. Back then it was in analogue, now it’s digital and almost everyone has a camera! If you started photography in the 90’s, there was no YouTube so you needed to study it in school. At the end of the courses you would have a feedback session with your teacher. It was part of the education.

Today photography schools are not popular or greatly needed. 90% of the photographers you see taking pictures learned their skills online. Feedback in photography is something that needs a process, especially when an expert looks at your pictures and tells you what’s good and what you need to improve. Nobody is doing this in the digital era. The interaction with an expert is a very specific and personalized experience.

I’m really happy and proud that Phloc is pivoting and evolving into that direction. Bringing back an important step of photography learning from the past, the feedback, and modernizing to give invaluable insights to photographers today and in the future.

Where do you see your company in the next coming years?

We’re connecting people and photographers online. If Covid ends tomorrow, I’ll restart the tours, but I’ll still keep providing the online feedback tool we’ve developed. Between travel and feedback, Phloc will always have an important place in photography.

Could you tell us about one of the most special moments you managed to capture with your camera?

Sunrise in Patagonia

What achievement are you most proud of?

Back in Mexico and before moving to Israel, I told my wife that if we’re moving to the startup nation, I want to have my own startup. I’m full of ideas, full of energy and I believe in changing and challenging everything around me. When I opened my company, I needed lawyers, accountants and to get permits. For me, when everything was issued and done, it was a really important moment. I felt proud that I managed a great achievement as an Ole Hadash.

What do you love most about Israel? And what are the main differences with Mexico?

Also in Israel, as an entrepreneur, I had the opportunity to receive a lot of support. There are mentors and advisors that help entrepreneurs. I’ve been very lucky and found great and very successful CEOs who continuously give me feedback. There are also many meetups with learning and networking experiences. I’ve been very inspired by these talks and events. This is something we don’t have in Mexico. We do have very successful businessmen that are creating huge companies. But we don’t have an ‘entrepreneur’ or ‘startup’ mindset.

Thank you very much Eduardo for sharing about your experience as an Oleh entrepreneur! It was truly inspiring. We wish you the best of luck to you and Phloc!

Eduardo Feldman

Check out Eduardo’s pictures on Instagram: @efeldmanphoto.

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