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Version One

Guillermo Rauch, CEO and Co-Founder of Vercel

Apr 20, 2021

Tune in to this episode Version One, a podcast about the product development journey from the makers behind some of the web’s most talked about tools and resources. Host Maurice Cherry introduces the main driver and passion behind the Vercel platform—Guillermo Rauch. Guillermo created Vercel after years of passionate work in the computer and software industry. Find out the experiences, technologies, and challenges that gave birth to this unique platform.

Maurice gets the conversation started with a background on Guillermo’s early interest in computers and the developing world of technology. Guillermo shares about the itch he always had in wondering what more could be done with the pieces he had. Learn about the challenges he faced in Argentina and the unique steps he took in overcoming these. Downloading Linux proved to be a pivotal moment in Guillermo’s journey with open source, literally opening up to him a new world for developing.

Through web forums, Guillermo realized his need for community to succeed and figure things out. DataFull, a stock overflow website, and his obsession to be top on their leaderboard as pre-teen drove him to new levels. Guillermo quickly found his niche in answering all-things concerning Linux. As his online networking and friendships grew, he was introduced to a new world of work via the web, where he could get paid for small CSS fixes. Guillermo quickly starting taking on more projects and making money through these side gigs, until the milestone moment he faced as a 17-year-old with a job offer from Facebook. The tensions of website work and his education collided, leading to his dropping out of school altogether. Learn how this man continued moving up in the industry, without ever obtaining a high school or college diploma! Maurice continues tracing Guillermo’s journey as he moved abroad for jobs—the first being a Switzerland start-up. No longer working on side jobs, Guillermo found himself joining a team full time. Passion drove him, and his work spoke for itself.

The conversation dives into the details of Guillermo’s passion, along with his growing obsession with the power of JavaScript. Guillermo pivoted from his LearnBoost start-up, to working on real time sharing with creating Cloudup—utilizing hyperlinks for expedited sharing. Listen to his story about meeting the founder of WordPress and how they discussed the incorporation of JavaScript. Guillermo was always itching more. Laying foundation for deploying and building initiatives, his experiences led to the creation of Vercel.

The episode draws to a close as we hear about the anxiety that pressed Guillermo into functional programming to be apart of the discovery and revolution he saw on the horizon. Vercel’s name reflects the performance and agility values behind the brand. Guillermo wanted to create an entry point that wasn’t granular, and this product proved to be the crossroads of his inspirations. Nothing was taken for granted. Guillermo emphasizes that success does not come in just one key paradigm, but rather in taking on a “customer obsessive” mentality in order to bring (or create) the best possible solutions to people!

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  • 0:13 - Introduction to this podcast
  • 0:33 - Vercel introduced
  • 0:57 - Maurice introduces Guillermo Rauch
  • 3:09 - Web forum networking
  • 6:27 - Milestone moment with Facebook
  • 8:15 - A break from Sandbox
  • 9:22 - Moving abroad
  • 12:00 - Obsession with the power of JavaScript
  • 12;56 - The LearnBoost and Cloudup startups
  • 13:57 - Meeting the founder of WordPress
  • 15:34 - A break from Sandbox
  • 16:22 - Creation of Vercel
  • 17:18 - The crossroads of Guillermo’s inspirations