Wearing a shirt covered in colourful race cars, his eyes vibrating with enthusiasm, Roberto Macina is CEO and co-founder of Qurami. He is 31, but started when he was 26, and the issue of time is central to this story. For him, a computer engineer, time is the unit of measurement of our life and one which is still malleable. And that's not all. Time is the greatest of innovators: the challenge is to beat it.
It all began in 2010. Roberto had to pay his university fees, but only one office was open. "What if there was an app that solved the problem of queues?" he thought. The question was a rhetorical one though, because he was certain that he'd find dozens just by googling "queue" on his iPhone. But no. Months passed and he started getting fed up with his job, but his idea was still there, seducing and tormenting him. When, more as a joke than anything else, he took part in Startup Weekend, his idea came third, and Qurami (a portmanteau of queue, coda – Italian for queue, and cura – Italian for care) was born. And time started moving much more quickly.
Qurami is an app that allows you to see which public offices, clinics, reception desks etc. etc. have the shortest queue, take a number on your smartphone and follow the queue's progress in real time while you do something else. And from the moment of its birth, everything took off: funding, and customers in Italy (about a hundred places) and abroad, especially in England. "The goal is to Quramise everything." Which means developing the idea for similar services, but also Quramising the entire world. A bit like the board game Risk, except that alongside the joy of the battle there's the knowledge of having created an app that responds to an actual need. And it is upon regaining time that Roberto and his team focus. Studying something small with an ethical duty not to think of anything else, while at the same time going all over the place. Everything works differently with Qurami, and so time is no longer money. Money is people - how many use your app. That is your value. Your ability to make the world smaller. And to change it.
The story of Roberto Macina has been written by Gaia Manzini, writer.