Nick Budden is one of the co-founders of Vectr, a startup that is taking on big established players like Adobe to offer an Online Graphics Editor.
Originally from Canada, Budden traveled the world for three years as a Digital Nomad, a freelancing programmer free to work from wherever it suited him. During this time, he also spent three months in Taiwan and enjoyed very much.
At the end of this period he met his co-founder Emery Denuccio and they set out to start their new company together. They raised seed money from VCs and Angels in San Francisco before deciding to move to Taiwan.
He heard about the Entrepreneur Visa via some Facebook posts, he does not remember exactly from whom but he guesses the Taiwan Startup Stadium.
In Taipei Vectr hired renowned law firm Winkler Partner to set up a local branch office of their US company and to apply for an entrepreneur visa. They applied for the entrepreneur using the VC investment as the criteria. With good lawyers helping out they found everything to be very smooth.
Budden has recently extended his Entrepreneur Visa for the first time. To get the extension they had to show they had hired several people. On top of the founders, they now have three Taiwanese employees and one foreign employee they talked into relocating to Taiwan.
Vectr recently launched their first product to much accolades. For example, Forbes Magazine named Vectr one of the hottest design tools to try in 2016.
Budden says he sees himself continue to live in Taiwan even as Vectr is taking off. In a few years he figures Vectr will have 30-40 employees in Taiwan of which 70% would be locals and the rest foreigners. They think this mix would be perfect to both take advantage of Taiwan’s local talent and also be international. They will also likely have several other offices around the world of about the same size. The programming skills they are looking for is so rare it would be hard to grow much bigger in any given city.
He has participated in many events organized by the Taiwan Startup Stadium. Vectr was one of 8 Taiwanese start-ups that represented Taiwan at Slush Asia in Tokyo in May 2016 where they were also one of the five finalists out of 60 teams.
Budden often recommends other foreigners to apply for the Entrepreneur Visa. He says there are many great programmers from all over the world who come to Taiwan to teach languages after they graduate. He hopes more of them can be convinced to stay in Taiwan to start companies.