Karlina Anna Dzene & Ernest Elksnis - Erasmus entrepreneurs

Success stories

Recent testimonies of successful business networking - Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme

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New entrepreneur:
Karlina Anna Dzene (Latvia)
Age: 24
Company name: (Start-up)
Sector of activity: Advertising,Promotion, Media

It was a great experience to learn from another entrepreneur and have the chance to fill in the gaps in my own business idea. During the experience, I expanded my network and gained a better understanding of what it takes to run a small business.

Host entrepreneur:
Ernest Elksnis (Netherlands)
Age: 26
Company name: EpsiWorks (4 years of experience)
Sector of activity: IT, office and communication equipment, services and supplies

Thanks to Karlina I received a fresh perspective from an illustrator’s point of view, new experience in illustration-based ads and illustration videos.

Period of exchange: 04/2021 until 07/2021
Duration of exchange: 4


Results and benefits


1 new company created
3 new contacts
Graphic design digital illustrations


Karlina Anna Dzene is a graphic designer and illustrator from Riga, Latvia. She decided to participate in the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme as a new entrepreneur to develop her profile as agraphic designer and start her own design agency. With business plan in hand and experience as a graphic designer, there were still a few areas in the business aspect that she wanted to learn from an experienced entrepreneur. She expected to build an expanded network, strengthen her business plan, and gain basic knowledge about running a small business. Ernest Elksnis is the co-founder of EpsiWorks, a digital agency, while also being involved in various IT and e-commerce projects. He was willing to join the programme to host a young professional from a similar industry and share his entrepreneurial knowledge and skills. His expectations were also high; he was interested in finding a person he could consult, build projects with, and bring fresh ideas and new skills that new entrepreneurs can bring.

During the mobility in Amsterdam, Karlina worked with two clients in the food industry to develop their website and brand identity, having the opportunity to act as project manager and designer. And together with her host Ernest, they created videos and advertisements using illustrations. Ernests regularly demonstrated the practical steps of running and managing a small business on a daily basis, and helped Karlina develop and improve her business plan. The two entrepreneurs also worked on sharing experience and knowledge about marketing business tactics and sales strategies in the design industry, and brainstormed content ideas for social media suitable for the design agency industry that could be used in the future on such platforms as Instagram and LinkedIn.

The results of the EYE exchange show that the cooperation between the entrepreneurs was fruitful. The new entrepreneur Karlina acquired practical skills and knowledge in business management, especially in the areas of customer relations, finance and sales, through cooperation and knowledge exchange with her host entrepreneur. During the meetings and phone calls with clients from the food industry, she improved her communication skills. And by the end of the exchange, she had an improved business plan with an updated marketing strategy, sales and operations processes, as well as an expanded network in the digital agency industry in Amsterdam. On the other hand, Ernest has successfully developed two food-related e-commerce websites and brand identities, gained a new knowledge of illustrating ads and videos, improved skills in marketing and an action-based plan for further marketing activities such as content ideas for Instagram and LinkedIn thanks to Karlina's contribution.

For more information, please contact the local contact points involved in the exchange:

New entrepreneur's contact point:
Latvijas Asociacija Eiropas Kopienas Studijam (Riga, Latvia)

Host entrepreneur's contact point:
EUCLID NETWORK (Den Haag, Netherlands)

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