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News written by Natalia Masiarová

June 28, 2023 ,

Top news: Colours of Ostrava Executive Director Petra Řezníčková: “In the end, everything is possible!”

Seventeen years ago she joined Colours of Ostrava as head production manager, arranging almost everything – and so today we’d be hard pressed to find someone who understands the organization and operations of music festivals more than executive director Petra Řezníčková. In her own words, she “doesn’t understand music at all”, but that’s hard to believe: prior to linking her life to one of the largest musical events in the Czech Republic, she worked as marketing director for the popular Hitrádio Orion radio station, which later became a partner of Colours of Ostrava. And as she emphasizes, loyalty and trust in the project for which you work is one of the most important qualities that a person in this beautiful but demanding field can have.

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David Swaim from the investment team: “At Rockaway, we do business creatively.”

One little black mark with the US authorities and you can end up… at Rockaway perhaps! Investment manager David Swaim, who has both Slovak and American blood in his veins, has an interesting career path behind him, during which both conscious decisions and unplanned events played a role. “I wanted to stay in the US – and I’ve been living in Prague seven years now. I returned to the States to finish my MBA – and left for Warsaw. I planned to work only for start-ups – and in the end I enjoy being in an investment group.”

CEO of FLO Group: “People should believe in what they want to achieve – career-wise and in life”

From co-founder of a Czech-Australian consulting company specializing in global companies with digital innovations and transformations to the CEO of the technology division at Mind2FLO. This too is part of the story of Andrej Hájek, the new head of the FLO technology division who wants to accomplish explosive growth once again. In this issue of the Insider, you’ll find out what values and principles accompany him in his professional and personal life:

Max Palko: “At Rockaway one experiences a constant steep learning curve.”

A professional soccer player, an actuary, a consulting manager. Max Palko could have become all of these, but – luckily for the Rockaway team – life led him elsewhere and finally led him to the position of investment manager with us. “In my current position, I’m learning something new every day and have the desire to improve constantly. For the time being I’m not stagnating – and I like that,” says Max, who has been part of the ventures team for almost five years now, and is giving a good name to not only the investment company, but also to the Rockaway Academy programme for graduates, which he was part of a couple of years back.

Invia Head of Brand and Communication Michal Bošela: “Perfection is often faked these days – don’t be afraid to admit you don’t know something.”

As Head of Brand and Communication he dedicates his time at work to ensuring that travel has a good name. And when he comes home from the office… as the blogger known as Exoguru, he devotes his time to the same thing! In short, Michal Bošela is the right man for the job at Invia, the largest internet travel agency – he sees his profession both as a mission and a hobby. And as someone who has already experienced much at Invia, he is a great inspiration to many people…

COO Heureka Group Michal Vodák: “Independence of others helps me concentrate on my own work.”

Everyone we’ve presented in our Rockaway Insider over the past two and a half years likes and is fulfilled by their work – but Heureka Group COO Michal Vodák could be the spokesman for this inspiring group! His charming drive is infectious, but he’s also able to talk about travel or discovering exotic flavours with the same enthusiasm. At the Heureka Group, Michal is in charge of the largest department – Commerce – which includes Brand Marketing, Performance Marketing, the Business Department, Customer Care, Yield Management, and Business Development. What’s the most important thing at work, in his opinion, and what’s his dream? Have a look at the new Insider…

Lucie Kubínyiová: “What I value most about Rockaway is true collegiality and friendship.”

“When I first read her CV, one thing was immediately clear to me: we have to get her into Rockaway as soon as possible!” That’s how Eva Livora from HR remembers the moment when the current Senior Legal Counsel Lucie Kubínyiová was coming in to Rockaway for meetings with the legal department to “get to know each other”, when both sides were exploring whether Lucie would make a good team member. Today, she’s been a permanent and reliable part of Rockaway for almost a half-year, and nobody doubts that back then our HR department made the right choice in picking a candidate.

Lenka Dvořáková, CFO Colours of Ostrava: “In our team, I most value empathy, healthy insolence, and assertiveness.”

A human touch, friendship, team spirit, mutual motivation – nothing could characterize Lenka Dvořáková’s mindset more when it comes to work. For ten years she worked on audits at KPMG, she spent two years as Head of Controlling and Reporting at the INVIA Group, and is now jumping into a world where numbers and spreadsheets merge with music: “I don’t know how everything will work out, but if I don’t try, I’ll never find out,” says the new financial director of the Colours of Ostrava festival with a smile. And it’s no coincidence that she was recently selected for the #finwomen project – a list of 131 inspiring women working in finance. A new year, new challenges, and lots of new faces – another round of the Rockaway Insider newsletter is here, and in the first issue we’re introducing Lenka.

ROCKAWAY INSIDER with Karin Louženská, COO Rockaway Ventures Fund

“Having a plan and knowing where to start keeps me calm,” says Karin regarding her strategy for when things start getting tough at work. As COO of the Rockaway Ventures Fund, since the beginning of summer 2022 she has been in charge of keeping it running efficiently, communicating with investors and third parties, cash flow management, and reporting to investors. What does Karin do to balance out her busy schedule, and what does she value most about Rockaway? You’ll find the answers in this edition of the Insider.

This fall’s Money Talks was all about capital markets

What sort of fall would it be for Rockaway without Money Talks? This time around, we held this traditional event, where our teams meet with portfolio colleagues and guests from partner companies, at a tested location with a singular atmosphere: Žofín Restaurant by STONES Catering. This time around, the key theme of the entire evening was “Capital Markets”. We heard panel discussions by our partners from J&T Bank, J&T Investment Company, LYNX Broker, and WOOD & Company.

ROCKAWAY INSIDER with Adam Rapák (Group PR & Content Manager at DODO)

Adam Rapák became the PR manager at the DODO logistics technology group a mere month ago, but it’s already clear that he deserves his place among the most inspirational members of the Rockaway family. Not only because he came by his extensive experience in a truly iconic company – at McDonalds Adam worked on PR projects for almost eight years – but also because lots of drum’n’bass fans know him as DJ Schooler.

Marianna Zapotilová: “At Rockaway, every day is a challenge. And I like that.”

Marianna Zapotilová has been a permanent part of Rockaway’s PR team since 2020, when she was hired by then-PR manager Michaela Papežová. Initially she focused on social networks, internal communication and working with universities, but soon her agenda broadened – including due to many external circumstances – and today along with Marek Blahuta, the other half of the team, she is responsible for the group’s entire PR strategy and everything that goes with it. And even though once upon a time she’d seen herself as a journalist, the last ten years have repeatedly convinced her that steering her career toward PR was one of the best decisions of her life.

Filip Široký: I like the idea that we can make a mark in the world from Prague

At the age of 15, he was already convinced that he’d devote his life to CERN, and though during university his interests took a different direction, he did make an appearance at the European Organization for Nuclear Research – and not only as probably the youngest trainee in history, but later also as the youngest employee. However, one short meeting with Rockaway Blockchain Fund head Viktor Fischer catapulted him from Geneva back to the Czech Republic, and for the past half-year now Filip Široký has been working at the Fund as a Research Associate. “Working for RBF allows me to not only be part of an amazing collective, but also to constantly discuss new technologies and build the largest crypto fund in Europe,” he says.

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