Handing out business cards during conferences and other events is a time-honoured way to network with potential clients, suppliers, and partners. Many will say that their needs are met, and that innovation in the space comes at the price of “leaving well enough alone”.
Mantvydas Narusevicius, director of WFDM and majority shareholder in Doup, vehemently disagrees.
“The old style of business cards is passé,” he says, in a sit down chat with BusinessNow.mt, where he explains the many benefits Doup offers to users – benefits that simply cannot be replicated with cards without digital capabilities.
Initially launched in his native Lithuania, Doup found widespread take-up, with Mr Narusevicius confident that Malta is ready for a high tech gamechanger that can do far more than share your contact details.
Doup, touted as a green and reusable alternative to business cards, transmits a QR code via NFC technology – the same mechanism that allows for contactless payments.
“All you need to do is place Doup close to a new contact’s phone, and voilà – they now have all the details you want to share.”
These include the regular contact details like name, address, email, phone number, and socials, but also a large variety of downloadable files, like images, videos, calendar reservations and more.
“You can keep all your ready-to-transfer information in one place, making it easy – and near instantaneous – to share everything you need with a tap,” notes Mr Narusevicius.
Doup comes in many forms. You can get started with a free virtual card on your phone, and of course, as a plastic card. But it also comes in bamboo, metal, gold, and fully customised cards with the branding of your choice.
Other options include a sticker (“Just stick it your daily planner and turn it into a business card!”) and as a wristband (“Perfect for informal meet-ups like pool events, or chance encounters at the gym!”).
Everything is managed through Doup’s free mobile app, which allows users to edit their details, set sharing permissions, and even chat with contacts.
One surprising feature of the app is a location-based search feature that allows users to find other Doup users in their vicinity.
“It’s an entirely new way of making connections,” says Mr Narusevicius. “A Doup user attending an event or visiting a new city can turn on the location search and find like-minded individuals in an instant. Just like that, new contacts are made, and communication can take place on the app itself.”
A bit like Tinder for entrepreneurs, then?
That elicits a laugh: “We prefer to describe it as an insta-public relations assistant, but yes, you can call it that.”
Doup’s sustainability credentials are another benefit the environmentally conscious entrepreneur is keen to highlight.
“You basically get it once and never need another, unless you lose it,” he says. “No printing, no waste. It’s a real marker of how business should be done. It’s about building the future – one card, one user, one vision at a time.”
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