#Wearewera – Erica

Our Co-founder and CEO – who ain’t scared of flying!

My name is Erica Hjerpe and I grew up in Smedsby, Korsholm. Some people would describe me as talkative, social and creative. Others would say I’m a little too stubborn with very high flying ideas at times. Well I can definitely explain the “flying high”. You see, I like to fly over high heights using only a stick – as the pole vaulter I am. Being an elite athlete has taught me to work hard in order to reach my goals. Goals like competing for the Finnish national team, earn championship medals and break records. I was the 4th woman in Finland to jump over 4 m.

I have a lot to thank my athletic background. It took me overseas to the U.S. where I studied and pole vaulted for the university Virginia Tech. There I earned my second bachelor’s degree in Economics in 2017. I had previously gotten my Finance degree from Hanken in Vaasa. I’ve always been a sucker for numbers and math so I’ve enjoyed both these subjects.

My athletic carrier also gave me a forum to express my creativity. For years I’ve shared my passion for sports through my social media channels. My channels grew and I started working with both big and small brands and learned how to master social media marketing. This quickly become a big interest of mine and 2017 I decided to add marketing to my Master’s studies at Hanken. A decision that led to me asking two young women if I could sit next to them in the class “strategic marketing management”. The rest is history and the story of how Wera Agency saw daylight a year later.

What’s your greatest memory from creating WERA Agency?

One of my early memories is when we handed in our first school assignment together and called ourselves the “dream team”. From start we complemented each other really well. I particularly remember a face-time meeting we had in november 2017. I sat in Blacksburg, Virginia sipping on my morning coffee while Saga and Emma both came home from an evening workout. We discussed how to proceed with our research that we called “views on news”. And while being on different continents we managed to put together a research report with data gathered in both Swedish, Finnish and English. This report later became a published article!

Who are you in team WERA?

I’m the one with many ideas and out of the box mindset. I aim for the stars and I believe in us to 100 %. I also love to meet new people so usually I’m the one who start conversations and take meetings with new clients. I’m good at multitasking but I’m also very keen to make sure the final result I deliver is top notch. In school it was straight A’s, in sports it was breaking records and in work life it’s all about keeping it professional with a great finish. The key is to enjoy the journey and have fun along the way!