Imagine taking a step back in time, five years ago, into a small, dimly lit room with just a handful of individuals – that was us then. We weren’t in garages, there was no silicon involved, nor valleys. Oh, we’re in Cluj-Napoca, where there is indeed a valley. But we do have some additional commonalities with those famous tech stories: a vision, intuition, and a strong commitment to our shared ideals. This was the beginning of AscentCore in 2018.
Fast forward to today, and we’re still going strong, staying true to our values. 2023 marks a significant milestone in AscentCore’s history – our 5-year anniversary. It’s not just another year; it’s a year of growth, self-reflection, and the reaffirmation of our core values – Integrity, Relationships, and Results. It’s a year of both giving back and receiving well-deserved recognition. In summary, it’s one of the most meaningful milestones in our journey so far.
Starting the year with creativity
We kicked off the year with a burst of creativity. On a crisp January morning, we launched the first hackathon of the year. This internal event united three dedicated teams: Dorel Parcangiul, Parquet, and CarSpot. It served as yet another opportunity for our talented groups to explore their creative potential and collaborate on innovative projects. The outcome exceeded our expectations, showcasing remarkable results achieved in a remarkably short timeframe. The success of this endeavor left us eagerly anticipating the next hackathon, and we can hardly contain our excitement!
Keeping the love alive
With the arrival of February, a wave of warmth and affection swept through our workplace. Colleagues embraced the spirit of love, resulting in a memorable rooftop terrace proposal with a breathtaking view.
As March approached, we took the opportunity to celebrate International Women’s Day, recognizing the incredible women at AscentCore. Among us, Andu, a gifted musician, surprised everyone with an impromptu concert, leaving smiles and music in his wake. The gentlemen of AscentCore also spread cheer by presenting springtime gifts to our cherished AscentCore ladies.
Game recognize game
As we carried the spirit of appreciation forward, another heartwarming surprise awaited our colleagues when they arrived at the office. What could it be? This year, we dedicated a special moment to honor our team members who have been part of our journey for 1, 2, 3, 4, and even the veterans with 5 years of dedication. Thoughtful gifts served as tokens of our gratitude and a tangible reminder of how far we’ve come together. It was a heartfelt “Thank You!” to each and every one of our colleagues who contributed to our shared success. In just one year, we’ve experienced remarkable growth, a testament to our collective commitment and effort.
Paying it forward
It might surprise you that some of our most creative moments occur in the AscentCore kitchen. We had a hunch, which was confirmed during our first Christmas Decorate & Bake event. This year, the delightful aroma of freshly baked goods once again filled the air. Our colleagues from Cluj and Timișoara joined forces to organize the AC Baked Goodies event, crafting mouthwatering treats to share with the community. Over 40 participants enjoyed these sweet delights, understanding that their contributions were making a positive impact.
On June 1st, we celebrated Kids Day, and 21 little bakers came together to decorate cupcakes with joy and laughter. This happened on yet another occasion, as we gathered for Halloween for a pumpkin carving competition that ended with cupcakes and donations for a cause very close to home this time. We are truly grateful that our colleagues and their kiddos put in their creative efforts knowing that they would bring smiles to the faces of other children and people, just spreading warmth and happiness to those in need.
All in all, the act of giving is ingrained in our daily lives. Just as we do every year, this anniversary year was all about sharing joy and offering assistance to people across Romania. Whether it’s raising awareness and funds for specific charitable cases or making donations for education, school supplies, camps, sports, and culture, our company has backed them all, contributing around 30.000 EUR in 2023 alone. With the year still underway, our commitment to these causes unites us.
A teambuilding worth remembering
Picture an idyllic landscape surrounded by mountains, a gentle summer breeze, and not one but three swimming pools at just the right temperature. Now add 80 of our colleagues just ready to have some fun. AscentCore’s team-building event was quite an experience, to say the least, a couple of days where we discovered hidden talents as the teams put on a show during the talent competition. We still find ourselves chuckling at some of the performances as we remember them right now. Our three-day team-building event was a mix of laughter, friendly competition, and unforgettable memories.
From an exciting beer pong tournament to exhilarating hikes on the Apuseni Via Ferrata, we bonded and formed connections like never before. And when the night fell, the dance floor came alive, with colleagues dancing until the early hours. All in all, given the fact that the feedback from over 90% of the participants was overwhelmingly positive, it really highlights the incredible bond we share.
Showcasing our Brand with Ambassadors
Following our summer-themed AscentCore Festival team-building event, we returned to the office with a newfound sense of enthusiasm and determination. Eager to continue our positive momentum, we wasted no time in recognizing the amazing contribution of our colleagues over the years to developing and consolidating our culture by officially launching the Brand Ambassador program. It was heartwarming to see over 35 enthusiastic colleagues eagerly sign up to participate, showing a strong commitment to representing our brand.
A select few took the initiative and quickly rose to the top, actively engaging with our Live Leaderboard, and setting an inspiring example for their peers. As they embraced their role as brand ambassadors, a sequence of thrilling challenges lay ahead, each met with passion and dedication. Their efforts played a pivotal role in not only promoting AscentCore but also driving our organic growth and expanding our reach, strengthening our presence in the industry.
Traditions that make us who we are
Throughout our journey, we’ve held dear to the traditions that define us, such as the thoughtfully crafted birthday cards and meticulously selected gifts. These customs, which once brought joy to our smaller team, have evolved into something truly special as our AscentCore family has grown. Whether we’re preparing a prank or an overly-packed gift (Cornel knows what we’re all about), or setting up a tropical beach at the office, we’re always really eager to surprise people with how much we care about them, and how much they mean to us. Also, the pranks are really good so we’re excited about them any time.
And then there’s our Easter Lunch, a celebration that unites colleagues from Cluj-Napoca, Timișoara, and Bucharest. Our office happy hours also continue to be moments that draw us closer together and we’re always happy about those hours we get to spend together. Pun intended.
Keep Moving. Keep Grooving.
At our inaugural AscentCore Sports Competition, Aurelian truly stood out, demonstrating remarkable dedication throughout all three rounds of the event. To be honest, we were pleasantly surprised by some exceptional team performances that truly impressed us.
We had 22 colleagues actively participating, forming 11 teams with uniquely humorous names, making it a six-week battle of athletic prowess. Whether it was walking, running, or engaging in various physical activities, all teams displayed their competitive spirit and determination.
Then came Aurelian’s exceptional results, which were nothing short of impressive. All jokes aside, it was a fantastic experience, and we extend our heartfelt appreciation to each and every one of our sporty colleagues who took part in the competition. We eagerly anticipate the next one.
In the meantime, we’ve planned four workshops for our colleagues. These sessions featured a personal trainer, a physical therapist, a nutritionist, and a psychologist in training who engaged in discussions with the participants and even conducted practical activities.
Celebrating excellence in technology with a Meet-up event
Our commitment to nurturing a culture of innovation has led to the introduction of AscentCore Tech Communities, consisting of nine diverse tech communities. These communities serve as knowledge hubs, covering various domains including AI, QA, UI/UX, Frontend, Backend, C++, Mobile, System Design, and Management.
Under the AscentCore Digital Creatives umbrella, each community has pledged to develop its unique initiatives and regularly host meet-ups featuring presentations and knowledge sharing. In October, we marked a significant milestone with our inaugural AscentCore Tech Communities Meet-up, an event designed to showcase our communities and make them accessible to the wider world.
The Backend and AI communities, represented by their coordinators, Radu Ancas and Liviu Sopon, presented captivating business cases for AI, a demonstration of a Slack bot, and an engaging presentation by our CTO, Cornel Stefanache, the driving force behind our R&D efforts at AscentCore Labs. The event had 71 attendees, both in-person and online, and received positive feedback from external participants. It’s clear that we are well on our way to preparing for our next major event.
Talking about R&D, now just sit back, close your eyes, and picture a laboratory bustling with activity, where innovation comes to life. While our AscentCore Labs may not exactly fit that description, it remains the cornerstone of our R&D endeavors, leading to significant breakthroughs.
In 2023, we achieved remarkable milestones with three standout projects that are poised to make waves in the industry. These achievements were the result of countless hours of dedication and collaboration, with our brilliant CTO, Cornel, at the helm, working alongside a talented team. We’re thrilled to share more about these projects, but you’ll have to stay tuned a bit longer for the exciting updates we have brewing in our laboratory!
It’s important to note that all the research and development, creativity, passion, and talent we invested in our work didn’t go unnoticed this year. After receiving the European Technology Award for Artificial Intelligence in 2022, we garnered two distinctions this year from Global Brands Magazine’s Brand Award Winners in two categories: Most Innovative Artificial Intelligence Brand, in both Romania and the United States.
This accomplishment is significant for our entire team because our collective efforts received recognition, once again, following last year’s prestigious honor. While we aren’t driven by awards, it’s certainly gratifying to see them acknowledge our hard work!
As before, so in the future: People First
Our People Operations team has launched dedicated programs that prioritize Wellbeing, Recognition, onboarding, team presentations, and tech community meet-ups, among other initiatives. This steadfast commitment to placing people at the core of our efforts is at the very heart of everything we do.
While celebrating this significant milestone, we’re not resting on our laurels. Our growth journey is ongoing, with plans for a new headquarters in Timișoara and a co-working space for our colleagues in Iași. These expansions underline our unwavering dedication to providing our teams with exceptional workspaces.
In relationships we trust
Throughout 2023, we expanded our partnerships with every customer, strengthening relationships that have grown in value over the years. What is truly remarkable, particularly in this economic climate, is that the majority of these partnerships have been in place for over 3 years, with our longest partnership spanning the entirety of our 5-year history. This showcases the confidence and satisfaction our clients find in their partnership with us. These notable accomplishments are achievable thanks to the core values and characteristics that time and time again have established us as reliable partners.
The first significant aspect is the way we work as a cohesive, integrated One Team. We work closely with our clients in all aspects crucial to their business, which allows us to always be on the same page and support them at every stage of their projects. We also exceed our client’s expectations in terms of delivery and quality of service. The effort we invest in understanding in-depth the specifics of each business we work with is key. This deep understanding helps us bring valuable innovations and develop an approach with customized solutions for each specific business and industry.
Secondly, we pride ourselves on our flexibility and readiness to adapt to the rapid changes our clients’ businesses go through. We are always ready to respond to new challenges with effective and tailored solutions. Our sustained efforts have led to results that delight and retain our customers.
This business mindset, our shared values, with the support of our teams and the trust of our customers, help us move full speed ahead towards our vision of being the arm of technical innovation and becoming the partner of choice for all our customers. We would like to thank all of our customers for the support and trust they have openly shown us over these first 5 years of our story.
See all our client reviews here.
Join Us On A Journey Worth Celebrating!
As we reflect on the past year, we’re deeply grateful and proud of our collective achievements. Our journey, characterized by growth, unity, and endless possibilities, is one we’re eager to share with the world.
AscentCore’s 5-year anniversary isn’t just a date on the calendar; it’s a celebration of our shared values and our resolute pursuit of excellence, it’s an entire year we are keen on celebrating and making it worthwhile. We don’t just talk the talk, we live our values. At the core of AscentCore’s journey is a story of passion, dedication, and innovation. It began with individuals uniting to create something remarkable, and this spirit still guides us today. While the path ahead may hold challenges, we are confident that our values of Integrity, Relationships, and Results have guided us thus far and will continue to do so in the years to come.
Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to all who have been part of this journey and contributed to our success. We appreciate the commitment of our colleagues, the support of our partners, and the trust of our clients. AscentCore wouldn’t be where it is today without each and every one of you.
Here’s to the next 5 years!