Today's Entrepreneur


Today's Entrepreneur: Tom Popomaronis

We learn every day and I crave that knowledge

Innovation series by Kristin Karaoglu
November 23, 2012
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Today's Entrepreneur is Tom Popomaronis, founder and CEO of Auctionopia. According to his VEQ, Tom is good at team motivation, product management, technology design.

(Auctionopia is one of the promising startups competing to be one of the top 10 finalists to present on stage at Vator Splash NY in December. If you want to see Tom on stage, or another startup in the competition, register here.)

Vator’s community is the home to entrepreneurs who embrace their passion and follow their dreams. Our profiles allow members to express themselves by sharing their interests, lessons learned, as well as bits and pieces of their roller-coaster journey.

These profiles give entrepreneurs an opportunity to showcase themselves and tell their story. So if you are an entrepreneur, a serial entrepreneur, or even an aspiring entrepreneur, we'd like to hear from you.

I am a(n):
First-time entrepreneur

Companies I've founded or co-founded:
Auctionopia, OpiaTalk

If you are an entrepreneur, why?
You're in control of your life and destiny. There's something surreal about looking back on a successful company and thinking, "This was mine. I built this.".

My favorite startups:
Square, Stripe,, Warby Parker (My favorite glasses)

What's most frustrating and rewarding about entrepreneurship/innovation?
As much control as you have being in the driver's seat, there are so many intangible obstacles that can be a significant setback. However, overcoming those unforeseen hurdles is what defines us and is unbelievably rewarding.
I like the challenge of turning lemons into lemonade.

What's the No. 1 mistake entrepreneurs make?
I'll tell you the one mistake I made early on - I thought I knew everything. I had a novel idea, great plan, and well-defined strategy, so naturally I didn't think needed to learn anything. That couldn't be further from the truth.
It was, and still is, quite humbling how off base I was. We learn every day and I crave that knowledge.

What are the top three lessons you've learned as an entrepreneur?
1) Work hard, work harder.
2) From day one, surround yourself with a team that can make you and your organization stronger. Think long-term.
3) It's okay to pivot. Those who adapt to the market most efficiently yield an ever better product/solution.

(Want to be profiled? Just fill out your Vator profile and we'll find you! Or you can email

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Description: Auctionopia is a first of its kind direct social commerce marketplace. We're excited to offer our next generation embedded instant messe...
Bio: Founder & CEO of Auctionopia

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