Raimondas Zilenas

Country of origin: Lithuania

Chief Operating Officer, EUGESTA (Lithuania)

In 2008 I joined a start-up online shop in Lithuania, pigu.lt, and in two years we had made this company the leader in its area. However, I then started to feel a lack of knowledge about the technology that powers different e-businesses, so I looked for universities that offered programmes which could help to fill this gap. The MSc E-Business and Innovation (EBIN) programme at LUMS included the majority of things I needed, and had no match in other UK universities.

The EBIN programme has a wide range of modules, from strategic management to planning an IT architecture, as well as a great international environment, with a mix of students from 18 countries in my class. The study structure of individual and group learning was challenging but at the same time a very enjoyable experience. The practical application of newly acquired knowledge in the workshops was one of my favourite parts of the EBIN programme. The whole year was rich with academic experiences and social interactions among students, the lecturers and EBIN programme staff.  

The final stage of the programme was a consultancy project and dissertation following on from this. The consultancy project I did, for IPTV start-up company 21media, required my teammate and I to use all the skills and knowledge we had acquired so far on the programme. We had to figure out the best ways to co-operate and work together, as well as to implement our project management, market research and other necessary skills in solving the real-life challenges that 21media was facing. We were really happy with all the support from our academic supervisors and company representatives – it helped us to connect academic and real-life skills.

After returning home from Lancaster, I started to work as Chief Development Officer for my former employer, Lithuanian e-tailer pigu.lt, and as CEO of its newly acquired leading Latvian e-tailer 220.lv. The job requires good knowledge of the e-business development and integration principles, thus I am already finding the year on the EBIN programme is starting to pay off.