Amid the onset of the Russian invasion, we acquired an electronic mail from Ukraine. The sender was the co-owner of the Whidegroup, an ecommerce company in Zaporizhzhia, close to Crimea. Politely, Anastasia Zhuk requested if we might renew her firm’s listing itemizing.
She didn’t point out the battle and its upheaval on her enterprise, household, and life — solely the request, adopted by a thanks.
Thus started my dialog along with her, resulting in this interview. Our complete audio dialog is embedded beneath. The transcript is edited for readability and size.
Kerry Murdock: Inform us in regards to the Whidegroup.
Anastasia Zhuk: Whidegroup is a boutique ecommerce improvement company. We work with small-to-medium-sized ecommerce companies worldwide. We give attention to Shopify and Magento, though we’re skilled on many platforms.
We do design, improvement, and integrations of ecommerce websites with ERPs, CRMs, logistic options, and so forth. We additionally work with service suppliers — transport, funds, others — and assist them develop extensions and purposes to combine with the most well-liked ecommerce platforms.
My husband Anton and I based the Whidegroup in 2014. The corporate is positioned within the industrial metropolis of Zaporizhzhia. My husband already had expertise working within the ecommerce business, managing tasks and consulting with ecommerce retailers. We’ve got about 20 workers, all in Ukraine.
Murdock: Zaporizhzhia is in southeastern Ukraine close to heavy combating.
Zhuk: Sure, that’s appropriate.
Murdock: Inform us in regards to the battle’s affect on you, your loved ones, and the Whidegroup.
Zhuk: It’s positively not the best of occasions for us. A few of our workers tried to depart Zaporizhzhia for safer locations. Anton and I are in Western Ukraine, as is our 5-year-old son. We didn’t depart the town due to the battle. We have been on trip on February 24, when the Russians invaded. We’ve been unable to return.
I’ll always remember that morning. My husband woke me up and stated, “The battle has began.”
It’s historical past that we’re seeing with our eyes. Our kids see, too. It’s a tragic state of affairs. We’re praying and hoping that the battle received’t final years.
Two of our workers are outdoors Ukraine now. They went with their kids to Poland and Serbia. Just a few are right here in Western Ukraine. The others stay in Zaporizhzhia.
Our authorities has enlisted individuals to patrol and shield the town militarily. So, a few of our guys full their each day duties for us after which struggle within the battle afterward. I don’t understand how they do it. Possibly they don’t sleep. I’m unsure.
However I’m very grateful and joyful to report that we will nonetheless meet all expectations of our shoppers.
Murdock: The place is Anton?
Zhuk: Anton just isn’t with me. He left us yesterday and went to Lviv, a metropolis in Western Ukraine. He joined a volunteer group that receives humanitarian assist from Europe — medication, hospital provides, gear — and distributes it to these in want.
Murdock: Let’s discuss extra in regards to the Whidegroup. You talked about experience with Magento and Shopify.
Zhuk: We began as Magento builders. That was Anton’s experience. He had his personal ecommerce retailer on Magento. He was additionally a developer, designer, and marketer.
We do all sorts of integrations, extensions, velocity optimization, and consulting. We do migrations from Magento 1 to Magento 2.
Murdock: You are able to do it.
Zhuk: We will do it. Our Shopify experience was vital throughout Covid as many retailers needed to transfer shortly from offline to on-line. We have been capable of assist them.
Regardless of the battle, we’re open for enterprise, able to serve ecommerce firms.
Murdock: How can of us attain out to you and the Whidegroup?
Zhuk: They will join with us by way of our web site contact kind or by way of electronic mail.
We might be very fast with consultations, recommendation, and no matter help they want.
Zhuk: I hope everybody learns extra about Ukraine and our historical past. We’ve got at all times been a nation that loves freedom, that doesn’t invade different nations. We solely wish to reside our life. Don’t watch Russian TV or learn Russian media. It’s a fairytale they inform in regards to the battle.
We don’t want anybody on our land. We wish solely to have our nation.