"Oh, you're in Bangkok? Then you've got to meet Sven!"
It was 2014 and I'd just started working with the team at WooThemes. Whenever I introduced myself to a new team member over chat and told them I was in Bangkok, that was their initial reaction.
"You've got to meet Sven".
They were right.
I sent Sven a message on the company chat, we exchanged phone numbers, and we planned to meet up for a beer later that night. He told me to meet him at The Australian Pub & BBQ, a restaurant and bar in Sukhumvit.
I thought to myself, what does a Swedish guy know about Australian pubs? As soon as I walked in and sat down across the table from him, I realised that while his name may have been Sven, he definitely wasn't Swedish. He was British - a fellow member of the Commonwealth - and I could tell straight away that we were going to be friends.
Sven and I eating lunch at WordCamp Mumbai years ago.
Over the years working together, Sven and I have travelled literally around the world together. Off the top of my head I recall travelling together to Mumbai, Kuala Lumper, San Francisco, Berlin, and Utah. We've shared meals, drinks, and countless experiences together.
And fortunately we'll have the chance to do it again many times over. As of Monday, Sven has joined Eric and me at Metorik.
If you've been using WooCommerce (or WooThemes) for a while, there's a very high chance you've spoken to Sven before. Over the years at Woo and Automattic, Sven helped 10,000's of customers take their website to the next level - we're truly lucky to have him.
Metorik is growing, but it's with purpose. As I wrote about last week on our Behind the Scenes blog, I intend for us to grow - but only with purpose. We have a lot of incredible features and ideas planned and we'll need Sven's help to make them a reality.
To mark the occasion and plan for the months ahead, Sven joined Eric and me down in Melbourne for the week. We've travelled down the coast and settled into an Airbnb, taking breaks from work to chat, chill, drink, and eat fish & chips on the beach.
Eric and Sven marvelling at our fish & chips dinner days ago.
As always, I'm incredibly grateful to each and every one of you, especially our customers, for making the work we do and the experiences we have possible. Thank you!