I am really happy to announce Xiaochen Tian as one of the speakers in Startup Iceland 2016. I got to know Xiaochen through Guide to Iceland, a company which launched its travel marketplace software in August 2014, less than two years ago.

Ingolfur Shahin, the Co-founder of Guide to Iceland told me about how Xiaochen was working with the team from Singapore. I was very happy when she moved to Iceland to start working full time with the Guide to Iceland team.

It was not an easy decision; moving from a warm tropical country (where she working in a think tank) to a cold and isolated place in the North Atlantic (to work on a startup). But it turned out to be the right decision for her.

Xiaochen along with the rest of the team have built Guide to Iceland into the most popular online travel marketplace in Iceland, she has also been instrumental in building Guide to Iceland’s Chinese presence and their local China team. Xiaochen recently returned from China where they have now set up an office. There are many processes that are different when making business in China.

Guide to Iceland now employs 36 people in 3 countries. Their fourth office will be up and running in Oslo within a few weeks. Iceland was the first test market for the Online Travel Marketplace platform that they are developing called, TravelShift.

Xiaochen is the CEO of TravelShift, which is showing tremendous progress and growth. I am biased since I am part of the team and I have seen from the beginning how the team has built an incredibly strong platform that they can scale into whatever market they choose. They have innovated in their technologically and business model.  Today they run a very profitable business that is only set to grow.

It will be exciting to hear Xiaochen talk about how penetrating the Asian Market, especially China, accelerated their growth trajectory and her perspective on moving to Iceland from Singapore and building a great startup here.

Here is a brief Bio of Xiaochen:

Graduated from Boston University with a Master’s Degree in public relations, with working experiences in the United States, Singapore, and Iceland, Xiaochen is a marketing and PR specialist who understands the globalized market as a whole, and the unique traits among different business environments and user/buyer behaviour.

Binding her love for travel and her background in Marketing, Xiaochen joined her co-founders to establish and grow Guide to Iceland to its current leading position in the Icelandic travel industry. She is now bringing TravelShift, its core technology and business model, into the global horizon.