Mike Baur gives young people a chance to make business ideas come to life and go quickly from their incubator stage into complete administrative stage if they can pass the tests of his company, the Swiss Startup Factory (SSUF). The process, though very rewarding does require entrepreneurs to have the right frame of mind throughout it and they need to be prepared to put in all the work it will take to make their business happen. Baur had a question and answer session with Red Bull Media, a media agency that has partnered with the SSUF in which he gave a few pointers about business ideas.
Baur said first of all, that spontaneous ideas are an entrepreneur’s best friend because they usually come when you realize there’s a need for a product that hasn’t been met yet. When asked whether it was good or bad to share your idea for the business with others, Baur replied that sharing your idea could help you find others who would agree with it and may want to be a part of your administrative team. But most importantly he said that you should never be afraid to fail because failing the right way will help your business be better as you restart it.
Mike Baur was born in Switzerland and has gotten most of his education at the local schools and universities. While still in high school, he decided to go into banking as a career because it was one of the most reputable jobs in Switzerland at the time. He was told at the beginning of his internship at UBS Bank that he could become a well-paid executive eventually if he followed a chart that the manager he met with drew up. Baur set out to do just that, and in 10 years he was already an esteemed advisor at that bank. He would later transfer to Clariden Leu where he sat on the board of executives in commercial banking, but there were events that happened that had him decide to retire from banking while still only 39. It was mostly how the recession of 2008 changed the regulations and outlook on banking the following years that had Baur pursue other options.
Mike Baur wanted to go into business investing because he realized there were many brilliant thinkers in the universities but little funding for them to build businesses. He had contacts in groups like CTI and the Goldback Group who he brought together to build an accelerator that brought the university graduates and investors together, and the SSUF has also been a partner of tech research firms like Think Reloaded and FinTech Fusion. The acceleration process for entrepreneurs at these companies usually takes about three months and upcoming businesses even get access to offices upon launch.