Hi there. My name is Ilya (sounds like “eel-YAH” or [ih-l-y-ah]). I live in Netherlands.

I’m a sci-fi guy, nurturing both science and fiction (artistic) sides of me. I was Top-20 of my age in math in Russia (which is kind of a big deal for the country of engineers). I also droped out from the top university because of my stand up “career”. I felt in love with advertising, starting on the creative side and building new brands and stories for multi-channel national campaigns, and then got back to structural thinking of strategy, wondering about how it works and how to make it work.

Today, I work as a Partnership Transformation Director at Nike, looking after the future of Nike across leading European e-commerce partners: Zalando, Asos, AboutYou, etc. While it’s a fantastic place to be, there is definitely much more to it than my job.

I think a lot. I’m constantly asking myself different “Why?”, and “What?”, and “How?”. I also do a lot. You know, any thought is way cooler when it becomes a reality.

My superpower

To go into areas of the unknown, create a structure there, and also bring people along with my thinking. Once you have a structure, and everyone gets it, you can finally have a conversation about the topic: to define, evaluate, discuss, and develop it together.


For the last 20 years, I’ve been advancing my mastery in communication science and leadership, driven by my passion for the following topics: better future, consumer relationships, and fulfilled teams.

Each of those is a complex topic, and I’m happy to discuss it on any level of detail. Those are some keywords.


I’m often all over the place, fuelled by new ideas. Some things just stick.

Parenting 201
Becoming a parent is one thing. Being a parent is a different one. And it’s different every day. While I enjoy it so much, there is so much that I need to learn.

Opposite to the majority, I’m not driven by any objective here. It’s all about the journey. Exploration brings me joy. Also, it’s the only life I have. So, I want to get the most out of it. Now I’m captivated by the idea of the design of my day being the most important project in life.

I started running more than ten years ago. My highlights are a few marathons, including the classic one in Athens and an astonishing one along the Big Sur. I’ve recently rediscovered my passion for running, turning it from occasional exercise into a new routine.

Pizza is all about mastery. Dough, firing the oven, baking. Every detail matters: every percentile, milligram, second, and degree of a temperature. My go-to style is Neapolitan. Well, and I’m not there yet.

I love progress. There is an internal urge to try everything new that is out there. Smart home, wearables, VR, 360-cameras, you name it. It may not be the most expensive ones, but I’m always hands on and on the frontier.

If you pick stereotypes about Russians, I would always go with chess over vodka. I’ve started playing as a kid with my grandfather. There is something satisfying in this game for my math-shaped mind. Wanna play? Say hello on Chess.com

Games are how we learn in the undull way. Video games are the most immersive media ever, and have beat the movie industry by budgets already. A good game is a captivating narrative and experience. This is something that I am always happy to follow, to dive in, and just enjoy it.

Indie game development
I’ve started developing video games when I was 7 y.o. (1990). My first one was a ghost wondering around a labyrinth, and it was saved on an audio tape (yes, for real). I’m still enjoying this mix of programming challenge and storytelling through experience. My WIP game is called Exploit and it’s a space-based immersive sim about hacking and negotiations.

Sci-fi reading/writing
Since a very young age, I like dreaming about the impossible: from flying a dragon to explore the back doors of the universe. I also love good stories, so I’m having a lot of fun both reading (a lot), and writing (not as much as I would like it to be) on the everything science-fiction related.