NAME: Kate Ho
NATIONALITY: British Chinese
ACTION/SECTOR: Science, Health, Research & Technology
POSITION: Managing Director
ORGANIZATION: Interface3, Tigerface Games
My Background and Career
I founded and run two companies – Interface3 and Tigerface Games.
Interface3 designs and delivers innovative, technology-led consumer experiences to digital and creative professionals. From augmented reality to multitouch interactive surfaces, we help clients concept, craft and develop a bespoke, cutting-edge experience that will fit both your budget, time-scale and need for originality.
Based in Edinburgh, Scotland, TigerFace Games is an independent developer specialising in designing and developing collaborative and social learning games for iOS and Android. Our games redefine what learning games are, combining game design aesthetics with genuine, underlying educational value.
In regards to Interface3, from founding it in Nov 2009, it has grown to 6 full time staff members in just under 3 years. (At the height of the summer, we had 9 full time staff.) We have a 6 figure turnover, and we have work for some of the largest organisations in the world including SMART Technologies, PBS KIDS, Pearson Education, Reed Exhibitions.
Economic: Working class family, we didn’t have a lot of money when I was growing up. I learnt to program by saving up my pocket money at the age of 14 to buy a ZX Spectrum to learn.
Social: Being a non-white, female in the male dominated IT industry has made it a challenge to find the right role models.
Opportunities and threats which had a strong influence on your career.
Two things which had a real strong influence on my career (and character):
The first was that I did a lot of voluntary work in my early 20s. The important aspect is, that being in a voluntary organisation meant that I could take relatively high positions of responsibilities and learn a lot about strategic planning. In addition, I could implement these strategic plans in a relatively safe environment. So, to me, while I did not have a lot of ‘commercial’ experience prior to starting my business, I nurtured those skillsets through other extra-circular activities many years before that
The second opportunity was that there was a lot of entrepreneurial training and activities at my university (Edinburgh). And as a result, I really took advantage of all the seminars, training and the inspirational talks that were being given. All this meant that I got a much more accurate understanding of the journey of starting a high-growth, high-tech business.
Hints & Tips
“Every great achievement was once considered impossible.”
And - “Winning Hurts. Losing Hurts More”
Suggestions and advice to give to women:
The hardest thing about reaching your goals is that you have to first find out what you want your goals to be. Do a lot of things, experience lots, try everything once. Don’t be afraid. Once you find that the things that you get most excited about, go for it. Work like it’s your last thing you’re going to do; be bold enough to take opportunities when they arise. Trust yourself. Back your own abilities. If you don’t believe that you can achieve something – no one else will.