A nationwide surge in entrepreneurialism has swept across NYU’s campus, and two Gallatin sophomores in Gallatin, Willy Wheeler and Dan Cleary, have been successful in these ventures with their startup, Up2Code.
Wheeler said that last year the two students decided to take a shot at a business idea that they had conceived over drinks in Montreal. The duo founded Up2Code — a budding web and mobile development agency that has already secured both NYU and non-NYU clients.
According to its website, Up2Code enrolls users in a jumpstart program in order to assist with the development of a consumer’s product. The team at Up2Code helps users drive sales, develop marketing strategies and decide where to initially launch products.
Washington Square News spoke with Wheeler about founding his company, his hopes for the future of Up2Code and its impact on the NYU community.
Washington Square News: How did you and Dan Cleary meet?
Willy Wheeler: Dan and I met in our first year Gallatin writing seminar. We got paired up for a small project and hit it off and have been great friends ever since.
WSN: What does the company do?
WW: In our words, Up2Code works closely with entrepreneurs to design, develop and deploy modern websites and mobile applications. We have a great team with a varied expertise that serves to include the client in the process of bringing their idea to life in the best way possible.
WSN: Why and how did you guys decide to start Up2Code?
WW: It all started out with a drink in a foreign country. Our freshman year spring break we went to Montreal, and while getting a beer one night we started talking about how many businesses are struggling with deploying modern software products like websites and mobile applications. Since we were both interested in the field and had a number of friends that were involved in working on software products, we decided that we could help these businesses out. In terms of actually forming a company, it’s very easy — we just registered an LLC as a partnership and were up and running in about a week.
WSN: How many people are a part of Up2Code, and are you hiring or do you plan to hire soon?
WW: Currently, we have seven employees, five of which are NYU students. As work becomes more and more available, we are looking to bring on new members to the team — currently, our focus is on mobile developers.
WSN: How has NYU facilitated the startup’s efforts?
WW: As far as support from NYU, the Leslie eLab was a great resource. Being able to hold weekly meetings in the conference rooms gave us a great headquarters.
WSN: In what ways do you think NYU students can benefit from using Up2Code?
WW: NYU students can benefit from using Up2Code for our accessibility and passion to create. We love working with students and obviously with fellow NYU students. There’s something special about a team of students putting in their entire effort to create a great product. Up2Code provides a service to make that effort work as best as possible.
WSN: What would you tell aspiring entrepreneurs at NYU?
WW: If we were to give advice to aspiring entrepreneurs, it would be to just go for it. Just take one of your ideas and roll with it, see it all the way through and put in all of your effort, and see what happens. The worst case is you learn a ton of valuable lessons along the way.
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, April 17 print edition. Email Deanna Tran at [email protected]