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Tobias Gunzenhauser (@TobGunzenhauser) is the CEO and one of the three co-founders of yamo. yamo is Europe's first digital native vertical brand that produces fresh organic baby and children food. The company launched in 2017 in Switzerland with their first product of baby purees. In the meantime, yamo is also sold in "Coop", one of Switzerland's largest retailers. All of yamo’s products are 100% organic, natural and free from additives. They developed every recipe together with dozens of helpful moms, dads, their little ones, nutritionists and pediatricians. In the summer of 2020, yamo raised a €10M Series A. You will hear the fascinating origin story of yamo, tips around production & manufacturing, how to find a good production partner, advice on online stores, and much more! Show notes: 02:15 -- Introduction of Tobias 02:43 -- The origin story of yamo. How the founders came up with the idea for a baby food company 07:45 -- Starting a company on the side vs. quitting and going all in 11:53 -- How yamo started producing their first product 15:39 -- The benefits of a production partner vs. producing yourself 16:55 -- How to find a good production partner 19:42 -- How yamo solved the problem of high minimum orders combined with limited capital to manufacture their product 20:57 -- yamo’s approach to distribution and setting up their online store 24:41 -- The state of the eCommerce infrastructure & online store integrations in Switzerland 26:15 -- Overview of yamo’s product offering and their newest innovative product 30:36 -- Tobias’ key learnings from starting yamo 33:09 -- How to test your D2C business idea 35:01 -- Tobias’ favorite book 35:37 -- Another favorite D2C product of Tobias 36:01 -- Advice to your younger self 36:58 -- What courage means to Tobias 38:01 -- Info about yamo Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes and share resources & tips for anyone interested in entrepreneurship in Europe. Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Tobias Gunzenhauser.Support Leap TakersLinks:yamo Websiteyamo (@yamobaby) / TwitterDirect to Consumers (D2C) Business Modelwemakeit – Crowdfunding für kreative ProjekteIndiegogo - Crowdfund Innovations & Support Entrepreneurs Kickstarter - CrowdfundingWooCommerce - Sell Online With The eCommerce Platform for WordPressShopify - Ecommerce Software | All-in-one Commerce Solution for your BusinessMagento - eCommerce PlatformShoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike - Phil Knight
Heidi Lindvall (@HeidiLindvall) is one of the founders and a general partner at Pale Blue Dot. Pale Blue Dot is a seed stage ClimateTech VC investing in reducing and reversing the effects of climate change and preparing for a new world. They invest tickets of €200k - €2M, in pre-seed and seed-stage companies based in Europe and US. Heidi Lindvall previously co-founded Storygami, an online video company that increases viewers engagement & helped monetize content. She also founded CODOC, an award winning video production company. She has a background in Media and Human Rights and has studied for two degrees in the field in London. In this episode you hear how Heidi made her way from being a documentary filmmaker into the world of Venture Capital (VC). We also discuss her learnings from being an entrepreneur and what areas in ClimateTech she is most excited about to help save the planet. I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I did. Show notes: 01:48 -- Introduction of Heidi Lindvall 02:21 -- Description of Pale Blue Dot and the goal of the VC fund 04:26 -- How Heidi got in touch with the world of startups & tech 07:16 -- Documentary movies created by Heidi Lindvall 07:54 -- How Storygami - a online video SaaS product - was born 10:20 -- What is the right moment for a startup to start looking for investors 11:33 -- From Storygami to joining accelerators, becoming an investor, and the origin story of Pale Blue Dot VC 19:15 -- What is ClimateTech and in what areas does Pale Blue Dot invest in 22:35 -- Investment target & fund characteristics of Pale Blue Dot 23:50 -- Public investments of Pale Blue Dot VC 24:41 -- The role of regulation in the ClimateTech sector 26:27 -- Learnings from raising a VC fund in Europe 29:35 -- Heidi’s advice and tips for (aspiring) entrepreneurs 32:03 -- Book that had a big personal impact on Heidi’s life 33:07 -- Resources for people interested in the climate & tech space 34:17 -- Heidi’s most worthwhile investment 35:24 -- Advice to your younger self 36:10 -- What courage means to Heidi Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes and share resources & tips for anyone interested in entrepreneurship in Europe. Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Heidi Lindvall.Support Leap TakersLinks:Pale Blue DotPale Blue Dot (@palebluedotvc) / TwitterHeidi Lindvall (@HeidiLindvall) / TwitterOverstory – Creating Planet IntelligenceIPCC — Intergovernmental Panel on Climate ChangeForgive Me Mother - CODOC Documentary on VimeoMy Climate JourneyThe Weekly Climate - Michael Reibel BoesenThe Breeze - Tommy LeepScrew Business As Usual: Turning Capitalism into a Force for Good - Richard Branson500 StartupsOpen Data InstituteFast Track MalmoCarbon accountingCODOCStorygami
Anne-Laure Le Cunff (@anthilemoon) is the Founder of Ness Labs, an award-winning productivity & learning community and venture studio building products that focus on mindful productivity, wellness, creativity, and culture. She is an ex-Googler, MSc of Applied Neuroscience candidate at King's College, member of the Society for Neuroscience, and certified Mental Health First Aider accredited by the Royal Society for Public Health. Her work has been featured in WIRED, Forbes, FT, Rolling Stone, and more. Every week, she sends a newsletter to thousands of mindful makers with practical content at the intersection of neuroscience and entrepreneurship. She is half-French, half-Algerian. Anne-Laure was born in Paris, sold French wine in New York, studied in Tokyo, worked at Google in San Francisco, and started her company Ness Labs in London. In this episode you will hear the origin story of Ness Labs, we discuss fascinating topics such as the concept of time anxiety, and you hear Anne-Laure’s advice for anyone that wants to start & grow a content community. I found this episode incredibly interesting and I hope you enjoy it as well. Show notes: 01:54 -- Intro of Anne-Laure Le Cunff 02:42 -- Anne-Laure’s personal background and travels 04:49: -- How Anne-Laure became interested in the human mind and neuroscience 07:12 -- Ness Labs: What is it and who is it for 11:18 -- The origin story of Ness Labs. How Anne-Laure Le Cunff built a learning platform for mindful productivity 14:34 -- Lessons learned from a previous startup failure 18:41 -- Tips on growing your audience and community 20:43 -- Working with the garage door open 22:03 -- Positive highlight of Ness Lab’s journey so far 23:28 -- Ness Labs as a remote-first company 26:13 -- Time Anxiety. What is it and how do we best counteract it? 31:22 -- Top recommended articles on Ness Labs 32:12 -- Key learnings from starting an online learning community 34:19 -- Ness Lab’s newest product 35:37 -- Anne-Laure Le Cunff’s favorite book 35:55 -- Anne-Laure's best personal investment 37:08 -- Anne-Laure’s advice to her younger self 38:17 -- What courage means to Anne-Laure Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Anne-Laure Le Cunff.Support Leap TakersLinks:Ness Labs - Make the most of your mindTime anxiety: is it too late? - Ness LabsFrom FOMO to JOMO: the joy of missing out - Ness LabsHow to Change Your Mind: What the New Science of Psychedelics Teaches Us About Consciousness, Dying, Addiction, Depression, and Transcendence - Michael PollanGeneration effectMembership Community - Ness LabsHacker NewsIndie Hackers: Work Together to Build Profitable Online BusinessesSlackTelegram MessengerKing's College London
Ville Vesterinen (@vesterinen) is a serial entrepreneur from Finland. He is one of the original founders of Slush - one of the world’s leading startup & tech conferences, that attracts around 25'000 attendees every year to Helsinki. He also founded Grey Area - a gaming company that was backed by Index Ventures, LVP, Lifeline Ventures. Ville also serves as the chairman of Swappie, an ambitious young company selling refurbished mobile phones, which just raised $40M in June 2020. He is also on the boards of Maria 01, a 70 000 m² campus for tech companies in the heart of Helsinki as well as on the board of Startup Foundation, the organization that owns various initiatives supporting the Nordic startup ecosystem, among them Slush. Most recently Ville joined Atomico, one of Europe's leading venture capital investors, as an angel investor to support new aspiring entrepreneurs. Ville also just started his own podcast - The Long Map, where he explores how to live an interesting life. In this episode, we talk about the origin story of Slush, Grey Area, and Swappie. We cover Ville's learnings from being a serial founder and investor, as well as his tips for other aspiring entrepreneurs in Europe. Show notes: 02:07 -- Intro - Who is Ville Vesterinen 03:11 -- How Ville became interested in entrepreneurship & tech 04:59 -- Retelling the experience of becoming an entrepreneur in the 2000’s 07:08 -- The origin story of Slush, Europe’s leading tech conference 10:24 -- Ville’s learnings from starting Slush and tips for founding a conference 13:27 -- Major milestones and projects that Ville worked on so far 15:38 -- Location-based games & Shadow Cities 17:57 -- Swappie, refurbishing and selling second hand iPhones 20:04 -- Learnings and advice for future startup founders 24:46 -- Atomico Angel programme and Ville’s investing focus 28:48 -- Ville Vesterinen’s new podcast - The Long Map 30:32 -- Ville Vesterinen’s favorite book 31:38 -- Ville Vesterinen’s best personal investment 33:06 -- Advice to your 25 year old self 34:13 -- What courage means for Ville Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Ville Vesterinen.Support Leap TakersLinks:The Long MapCompanies VIlle hopes to Back - Ville VesterinenVille Vesterinen (@vesterinen) / TwitterSlush | The World's Leading Startup Event & Community of EntrepreneursSwappie | Refurbished and affordable iPhonesShadow CitiesHow Asia Works: Success and Failure In the World's Most Dynamic Region - Joe StudwellReaktor VenturesSecond Atomico Angel Programme CohortThe Nordic WebNeil S W Murray (@neilswmurray) / TwitterSophia Bendz (@sophiabendz) / TwitterLSE - London School of EconomicsPokémon GOWorld of Warcraft
Gonzalo (@gonsanchezs) runs and writes Seedtable, one of the leading newsletters focused on European tech. Seedtable is read by tens of thousands every week, and his work has been featured in Wired and Sifted. Gonzalo's writing always provides unique perspectives of developments in technology in Europe and its impact on society. Seedtable is one of my all-time favorite newsletters and I'm super excited that Gonzalo decided to come on the LeapTakers Podcast. In addition to Seedtable, Gonzalo is Head of Growth at Jobbatical, an Estonian Relocation Service for Tech companies, and he is mentoring startups. His previous experience includes having founded two startups, being a Content Specialist at Piktochart, growing EVELO from $1.2m to $4m as Director of Marketing, and helping to bring The Martec from 2,000 to 50,000 monthly visitors. Gonz likes to read and to fly. He speaks 4 languages and lifts heavy things, plus he seems to be into the occasional burger or ramen. In today’s episode we talk about practical tips for remote work and working from home, how Gonzalo started Seedtable, what makes a successful newsletter & advice on how to grow your own content, the impact of Covid-19 on various startup sectors, and more. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 01:53: Who is Gonzalo & introduction 04:52: Is a certain personality type required to be able to work remotely? 06:25: Tips & tricks for remote work 10:08: Gonzalo's favorite city to work from remotely 12:22: How did Gonzalo become interested in technology and entrepreneurship? 15:40: How does website flipping work 16:53: Learnings from his experience as a founder & failed startups 19:11: How to pick and find your co-founder 22:21: The beginnings of Seedtable 24:09: How Seedtable got traction 27:18: Tips to produce good content and to grow your audience 30:19: How to separate a job and a side project 33:30: Key facts about Seedtable 36:32: Gonzalo's predictions for 2020 and the impact of COVID-19 39:18: Discussion of startup sectors that are positively or negatively affected by COVID-19 44:20: Gonzalo's understanding of courage 45:14: Wrap-up Remo's Favorite Quote of the Month: “Discipline equals freedom” Jocko Willink If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Gonzalo Sanchez.Support Leap TakersLinks:Seedtable: Weekly newsletter on European techSeedtable edition: Interview with Matt Clifford of Entrepreneur FirstSeedtable edition: Spotify goes wildGonz (@gonsanchezs) on TwitterEntrepreneur First - Find a co-founder at the world's leading talent investorRoam Research – A note taking tool for networked thought.Flippa - #1 platform to buy and sell online businessesWIREDSifted | Telling the untold stories of European startupsJobbatical - Relocate your new hires efficiently and reliably
Christian (@chrjantzen) is the founder of Futuristic.vc, a micro-fund investing in Nordic pre-seed companies. He made his first investment at age fourteen when he bought shares in his favorite football club. He later started his first company, a real estate company, in 2011, which he grew while studying at university. Following his masters degree in Finance from Aarhus University , he co-founded another startup “Reunited Esports", which was a player-owned Esports organisation with teams competing in Overwatch and Rocket League. In 2017 he founded Futuristic VC, an early-stage VC fund investing initial capital into the next generation of Nordic founders. He has invested in +20 companies across the entire region and helped founders secure follow-on funding from some of the strongest investors in Europe. If you’re interested in starting your own company while studying / after graduating, or if you’re interested in the world of Micro VC’s, I’m sure you will find this episode very interesting and valuable. We talk about Christian’s path to starting Futuristic VC, his experience from starting an eSports company, fundraising advice, his best investment, and more! Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Quote: “He who jumps into the void owes no explanation to those who stand and watch.” Jean-Luc Godard Show notes: 02:43: Who is Christian & Intro 03:46: How Christian became fascinated with company and startup investing 06:40: Christians favorite football club 07:18: How Christian got into startups 10:01: Christians first experience as a founder 12:20: Christians startup company “REUNITED e-sports” 15:23: Christians approach to find an e-sports team and collaborate with them 16:42: Business model of an e-sports company 17:56: Christians decision to start a VC fund and the origin story of Futuristic 21:13: Fundraising and LP base of Futuristic VC 24:46: Overview of Futuristic VC 28:05: How Futuristic VC built up its deal flow and identifies startups to invest in 32:44: Learnings for startup investors 34:59: Learnings for startup founders 37:34: Best Investment of Christian Jantzen 38:52: What does courage mean to Christian 39:58: Wrap-up If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Christian Jantzen.Support Leap TakersLinks:Aarhus UniversityBenchmarkChristian Jantzen's Blog on MediumFC MidtjyllandFnatic - Global Esports Entertainment BrandFuturistic VCOverwatchREUNITED eSportsRocket League®
Mathias (@ockenrock) eats and breathes marketplaces. He is a partner at Speedinvest, one of Europe’s leading Venture Capital funds. The fund has it’s headquarters in Vienna, Austria and just recently raised its latest fund of €190m. Mathias runs Speedinvest x, a focus fund investing into network effects and marketplaces. Previously he was a General Manager for the German market at Uniplaces, an international marketplace for student accommodation. Before that, Mathias built out the marketplace-practice at Berlin-based Point Nine Capital, an early stage fund focusing on SaaS and marketplaces, where he was a Principal for 4 years. Previously, Mathias led the M&A-department of Ricardo Group, then a subsidiary of South African Naspers, that operates several online marketplace, classifieds and auction businesses across Europe. Earlier, he started his career as an Investment Manager at Mountain Partners in Zurich where he lead early stage investments in companies such as Lieferando or reBuy. Mathias holds a German-French double-diploma from European School of Business Reutlingen and Neoma Business School Reims. Knowing Germany’s capital city like the back of his hand, Mathias now leads Speedinvest's Berlin office as a Partner at Speedinvest x. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 03:08 -- Who is Mathias Ockenfels 04:40 -- How Mathias got interested in the Venture Capital industry and how he landed his first job in VC 08:44 -- Tips for getting a job in Venture Capital 13:56 -- What are the most important skills and abilities to work in VC 16:30 -- Mathias’ path from Analyst to Partner at a VC firm 22:27 -- Intro to Speedinvest and what kind of companies Mathias is interested in and is investing in 25:51 -- Key investment criteria to get an investment from Mathias / Speedinvest 28:48 -- Books and Resources for (aspiring) entrepreneurs and VCs 31:55 -- Mathias’ best financial and personal investment 33:28 -- Advice to younger self / someone starting out their career 35:23 -- Mathias’ favorite books and movies 37:23 -- What does courage mean to Mathias If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Mathias Ockenfels.Support Leap TakersLinks:Speedinvest x - Reading listMathias Ockenfels' BlogSpeedinvestSpeedinvest x - Network EffectsThe Marketplace ConferencePoint Nine Capital | Berlin based Angel Venture CapitalMountain PartnersESB Business SchoolThe Speedinvest Marketplace ScorecardVenture Deals – Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer And Venture Capitalist - Brad FeldMedium – Get smarter about what matters to youSubstackAbove the Crowd | By Bill GurleyNFXChristoph Janz - The Angel VCPrinciples by Ray DalioThe Hobbit - J. R. R. TolkienThe Lord of the Rings - J.R.R TolkienSoftware as a Service (SaaS)
Vedika Jain (@vedikaja_in) is an investor and Chief of staff at Weekend Fund, an early stage venture capital fund that is backing your next favorite thing. Previously she worked for high profile startups like Stripe and True Layer. Weekend Fund was started in 2017 by Ryan Hoover, the founder of Product Hunt (an amazing site to discover new products. Product Hunt was acquired in 2016 by AngelList). While Ryan and Vedika invest broadly, they are particularly excited about distributed/remote working, audio/voice technology, and tools for creators/makers. The fund invests in early stage startups with check sizes ranging from $75K to $200K. Limited partners of the fund include high profile venture capitalists Marc Andreessen, Chris Dixon, Ben Rubin, Chris Sacca, Hunter Walk, Kevin Rose, Garry Tan, and others. Vedika has a really interesting background story and approach how she made her way into "the wonderful world of venture capital". In this episode you will hear about her tactics how she got into VC and general career advice for picking the right companies & startups to work for. In addition, you will learn more about Weekend Fund, Vedika’s favorite books & blogs, and much more! Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally about cool startups! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 03:48 -- Who is Vedika & Intro 04:55 -- How Vedika became fascinated with technology and startup investing 07:08 -- How Vedika joined two fast growing tech startups - Stripe and True Layer 09:45 -- Vedika’s lessons learnt for picking your first jobs / companies 13:00 -- Writing personal investment memos and how to "hustle" your way into Venture Capital 18:05 -- Vedika’s investment areas and future trends 20:57 -- How Vedika met Ryan Hoover and joined Weekend Fund 22:35 -- Starting your own fund vs. joining an existing VC 25:16 -- Introduction to Weekend Fund 28:16 -- Favorite books and resources for aspiring VCs 30:41 -- Vedika’s favorite non-entrepreneurship related books 32:07 -- Most worthwhile investment of Vedika If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Vedika Jain.Support Leap TakersLinks:Weekend FundRyan Hoover - Startups, Product, Personal GrowthUnion Square Ventures (USV)TrueLayer | Powering the new era of financial innovationStripe - Online payment processing for internet businessesPatrick CollisonRetool: Build internal tools fastAndreessen Horowitz - a16zThe Passion Economy and the Future of WorkBeekeeperHarry Stebbings (@HarryStebbings)The Twenty Minute VC - Venture Capital, Startup Funding, The PitchProduct Hunt – The best new products in tech.Venture Funds | AngelListSlackAirtableFirst Round ReviewMonday Musings by David PerellMorgan Housel · Collaborative FundHow To Be Successful - Sam AltmanWhen Breath Becomes Air: Paul Kalanithi, Abraham VergheseLooking for Alaska: John GreenTurtles All the Way Down: John GreenNaval
Sebastian Wahl and Carl-Philipp von Polheim are the founders of mybacs. Mybacs is a direct-to-consumer (D2C), research driven, biotechnology company for gut-health products based in Zug (Switzerland) and Munich (Germany). Their goal is to revolutionize the healthcare market around the human microbiome and thus make a decisive contribution to the health and daily well-being of everyday customers. Mybacs is specialized on the development of innovative and high-dose synbiotic dietary supplements They have two types of products - a Travel and Daily well-being probiotic product. Sebastian holds a Master's degree with distinction in Pharmacy from ETH Zurich. Carl-Philipp studied business administration and holds a Master of Science in Management from ESCP Europe. In this episode we talk about the origin story of mybacs, how to start manufacturing a physical product, the emerging direct-to-consumer industry, tools and resources to start your own D2C company, VC fundraising tips, the benefits of probiotics, their key learnings for other aspiring founders, and more. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 02:54 -- Introduction of Sebastian, Carl-Philipp, and mybacs 04:02 -- Exploring the origin story of mybacs 06:12 -- Previous work experience before founding mybacs 07:23 -- Thoughts and considerations before taking the leap 08:53 -- Awareness of probiotics and the effect of the human microbiome on well-being in Europe vs. US 10:08 -- Geographies that mybacs operates in 10:22 -- How to manufacture a physical product as a startup 11:53 -- Tips for planning your supply chain 12:34 -- Timing from idea to shipping the first product 13:15 -- Thoughts about assembling the right team in the D2C space 14:40 -- How to incentivize experienced people & experts to join your startup? 15:17 -- Raising outside capital and thoughts about raising money from VCs 16:56 -- How to find a great Venture Capital investor 18:37 -- The advantages of the D2C market and business model 21:45 -- How to ship a product? 23:24 -- Helpful resources, tools, and books to start your own company 24:36 -- The future vision of mybacs 27:28 -- Understanding the mybacs travelers product 27:51 -- Favorite knowledge resources 29:32 -- Hobbies to take your mind off the startup life 30:12 -- Key learnings from starting a company. What would you do differently? 31:07 -- Career advice for ambitious future “leap takers” 32:16 -- What does courage mean to you? If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guests: Carl-Philipp von Polheim and Sebastian Wahl.Support Leap TakersLinks:mybacsDarm mit CharmThe Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses - Eric RiesThe $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future - Chris GuillebeauReal EngineeringWendover ProductionsNOAH ConferenceSlush ConferenceSTART SummitGlobal Founders CapitalRocket InternetShopifyWooCommerceVersandmanufakturTechCrunchGründerszeneProbioticsImodiumCAGR
Holger Seim (@hlgrsm) is the founder and CEO of Blinkist. Blinkist is a book summary app that lets you get the key insights from 3'000+ bestselling non-fiction books that cover leadership, history, psychology and more in 15 minute summaries in text or audio format. Blinkist has over 11million users globally and the book-summarising startup has won positive reviews from the likes of Forbes (“This may be the greatest app you download in 2018”) and The New York Times. In this episode we talk about how Holger and his co-founders came up with the idea for Blinkist, how they took the leap and started the company, his advice for aspiring entrepreneurs on how to find your perfect co-founder / first employees, the most important marketing channels for startups, as well as the importance of designing a unique corporate culture (such as the one of Blinkist), and much more.. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 03:13 -- Who is Holger 04:40 -- Startup idea generation and how the concept of Blinkist was born 09:01 -- How Holger and his co-founders took the leap and started Blinkist 09:50 -- Pursuing a startup idea full time vs. side hustle 10:59 -- Initial financing choices at Blinkist 12:36 -- Characteristics of a great startup founding team 18:12 -- How to find your perfect co-founder outside of your personal network (e.g. technical co-founder) 20:30 -- Blinkist’s company culture and why Holger places immense value on culture 24:42 -- The Blinkist operating system 27:07 -- Tips on maintaining a corporate culture while you grow as a startup 29:16 -- How Blinkist grew to the first 1000 clients and discussion of marketing strategies 32:46 -- Alternative marketing channels leveraged by Blinkist 34:41 -- Holger’s book recommendations for new startup founders 37:31 -- General book recommendations of the Blinkist founder 39:14 -- Holger’s best investment 40:42 -- Hobbies and habits to decompress from the startup life 41:40 -- Favorite travel location 43:09 -- Advice for university graduates about to start their career 46:23 -- What does courage mean to Holger Resources mentioned: Blinkist Wunderlist Holacracy Outbrain Revcontent Facebook Advertising Taboola The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers - Ben Horowitz The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever - Michael Bungay Stanier Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley's Bill Campbell - Eric Schmidt Who - The A-Method of Hiring - Geoff Smart Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind - Yuval Noah Harari Ready Player One: A Novel - Ernest Cline Dune - Frank Herbert If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Holger Seim.Support Leap Takers
Alisée (@aliseedt) is one of the founders of Seedstars, a global group of companies with a mission to impact people's lives in emerging markets through technology and entrepreneurship. The groups' activities cover over 85 cities with emerging startup ecosystems through a variety of activities, such as hosting one of the world’s largest startup competition “Seedstars World”, organizing training and acceleration programs, offering physical hubs called Seedspace, and doing venture capital investments & company building activities. Alisée is a board member of the School of Management of Fribourg and a member of the Swiss National Innovation Council. She was nominated Social Entrepreneur Forbes 30 under 30, Innovation Fellow of Wired UK, 50: Europe’s most influential women in the startup and venture capital space and the 29 Powerful Women by Refinery29. Born in France, she has spent most of her life abroad, from growing up in Singapore, California, and France to studying and working in Italy and Switzerland and finally accomplishing humanitarian missions in Brazil and Cambodia. As of today, she has traveled in 50+ countries. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Sign-up for the mailing list to stay in the loop! Show notes: 02:15 -- Introduction "Who is Alisée" 03:50 -- How and why Alisée joined Seedstars / helped to start the company 06:42 -- The early days of Seedstars - Traveling the world and setting up Startup competitions globally 07:40 -- How Alisée approached the decision to take the leap and quit her job at L’oreal to start Seedstars 09:41 -- How to make a decision between corporate job or startup life 13:46 -- How to overcome the chicken & egg problem in entrepreneurship 15:55 -- Alisée’s favorite moments along Seedstars journey and within her time as an entrepreneur 18:01 -- Seedstars today: How the business look like. Raising Series A VC funds for specific regions - e.g. Africa 20:19 -- How startups can become part of Seedstars and general advice for fellow entrepreneurs 23:47 -- Favorite books 25:48 -- Advice to younger self 26:07 -- Routine / Hobby of Alisée to get her mind off work 27:01 -- What does courage mean to Alisée Resources mentioned: Principles: Life and Work - Ray Dalio The Human Network: How Your Social Position Determines Your Power, Beliefs, and Behaviors - Matthew O. Jackson Seedstars Seedstars World - Startup Competition Advice to younger self: "Just chill" Tip for aspiring entrepreneurs: "Surround yourself with people that support you and give you honest advice & feedback (informal mentors)" "Figure out what life you don’t want and be sure what specific value-add you can bring." If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Alisée de Tonnac.Support Leap Takers
Andri Silberschmidt (@andrisilbi) is a 25 years old rising star here in Switzerland. He is a food entrepreneur, equity investor, and politician. At the age of fifteen, he began his banking education and is now responsible at Swisscanto Invest for the management of all quantitative equity funds investing in developing countries. In the summer of 2017, Andri and some of his friends founded kaisin. , a Poké Bowl restaurant and catering chain. He has been politically active since 2011 and became president of the "Jungfreisinnige Partei" of Switzerland in 2016. Recently he was elected to the Parliament of the City of Zurich for the FDP and is now on the list of the FDP Canton of Zurich for the National Council elections in October 2019. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Show notes: 02:14 -- Who is Andri Silberschmidt 03:14 -- How Andri started his career and got into entrepreneurship by starting a Poké Bowl restaurant 05:40 -- Opening a restaurant business without outside capital 06:53 -- How Andri started kaisin. & pitched his idea 10:10 -- Andri’s note taking app 10:34 -- Recommended resources & books for starting a business 11:44 -- Expansion plans of kaisin. 13:26 -- How kaisin. launched and promoted their store with little resources 16:04 -- How Andri balances his time and energy between all the different commitments. Why sleep is so important. 20:12 -- Andri’s involvement with “TeamStartup” to foster entrepreneurship in Switzerland 23:23 -- Challenges of entrepreneurship in Switzerland 28:02 -- Andri’s learnings from his startup experience 31:54 -- Book recommendations 35:11 -- Andri’s best investment 37:29 -- Andri’s “hobby” 39:03 -- Andri’s personal advisory board 41:37 -- Andri’s message to the world - "Respect, Create, Enjoy" 44:24 -- What does courage mean to Andri? Resources mentioned: Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity - David Allen Andri’s high productivity habits: 1. Getting enough sleep (7.5h), 2. No alcohol during the week, 3. Working out regularly Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams - Walker PhD, Matthew Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life - Nassim Nicholas Taleb TeamStartup Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead - Sheryl Sandberg The Constitution of Liberty - F. A. Hayek Kaisin. FDP Grünliberale If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on Apple Podcast or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Andri Silberschmidt.Support Leap Takers
Andreas Schwarzinger (@a_schwarzinger) is the founder and managing partner of uniboard AG, one of Switzerland’s largest student platforms with over 72k users. Andreas is one of the most down-to-earth people I know and with his work at Uniboard helped thousands of students to successfully pass their degrees. His motto is "Studying together is better"! In our conversation we talk about how Andreas and his co-founder Malte grew uniboard to its current size, community building, winning customers, favorite movies, smelling car waxes and other fun stuff. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Show notes: 02:59 -- Who is Andreas 04:13 -- How the uniboard.ch got started 06:53 -- How Andreas made the decision to run uniboard full-time 09:06 -- Growth of Uniboard in Switzerland 10:38 -- Startup vs. Traditional career in Management consulting 15:22 -- Lessons from community building and marketing 19:05 -- Thoughts about monetization of a platform 22:25 -- Challenges and learnings from switching from a student organization to a startup 24:23 -- General challenges of the startup world and how to overcome them (focus on product & focus on sales) 29:08 -- Tips for Selling, building trust, and winning customers 34:04 -- Future goals of Uniboard 35:58 -- Andreas’ favorite book or story 38:20 -- Unique interesting hobbies of Andreas 40:44 -- Personal advisory board 43:45 -- Advice to younger self / listeners in their early 20s/30s 46:35 -- Unjustified fears of entrepreneurship 48:05 -- What does courage mean for Andreas Resources mentioned: Uniboard.ch Avengers Endgame Waxfinder.com Top Gun (Viper) Will Smith Kevin Feige If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Andreas Schwarzinger.Support Leap Takers
Stefano Bernardi (@stefanobernardi) is an active italian angel investor on AngelList and at “Mission and Market”, a silicon valley startup founder of a Y Combinator alumni (Kickpay), and employee nr. 1 of Betable (backed by Greylock, Founders Fund). More recently he is also a part of Atomico's angel programme, where he focuses exclusively on investing in "planet+" companies, with teams that are trying to save the planet from the imminent climate crisis. Furthermore, he is strongly involved in the crypto community as the executive director of AragonProject, as well as an author for the popular token economy newsletter. Stefano Bernardi was born in 1986, and after spending a few years in San Francisco, now resides with his wife and son in a small town in the italian alps. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, and blog occasionally! Show notes: 02:52 -- Who is Stefano 03:55 -- Moving from Italy to San Francisco and entering the silicon valley startup ecosystem 07:16 -- Advice on how to get a job in a silicon valley startup 09:16 -- How Stefano met the Collison brothers - founders of $22.5bn fintech startup Stripe 11:10 -- What it’s like to work in a tech startup in San Francisco 13:50 -- Stefano’s move to start his own company 14:55 -- Tips for fundraising from VCs and angels & entering Y Combinator 17:00 -- Advice for applying to Y Combinator’s accelerator program 20:03 -- Why Stefano left San Francisco and returned to Europe 21:28 -- Aragon - description of the project and how it can help other startups 26:46 -- Favorite knowledge resources of Stefano 29:55 -- Most worthwhile investments 30:40 -- Advice to younger self 31:35 -- Unusual hobbies 32:45 -- What does courage mean to Stefano Resources mentioned: Sam Altman Y Combinator Aragon Collison brothers (Patrick & John) Stripe Kickpay Mission and Market Atomico Token Economy Elixir If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or in your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Stefano Bernardi.Support Leap Takers
Nilson Kufus (@NilsonKufus) is one of the co-founders of Nomoko, a technology company that is building photorealistic 3D models of entire cities. Their technology enables applications for various industries like self-driving cars, gaming, or urban planning. Nilson obtained a degree in Liberal Arts & Sciences from the University College Maastricht and is also a former Swiss figure skating champion. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Show notes: 02:24 -- Who is Nilson Kufus 05:23 -- How Nilson got into starting his own venture 09:49 -- How moving out and living abroad helps you develop critical skills for entrepreneurship 11:22 -- What is Nomoko and how they want to enable the 4th industrial revolution 14:33 -- Idea finding and first steps as a company 18:40 -- Financing of Nomoko 19:44 -- How Nilson dealt with manufacturing hardware needed to enable their core data product 25:17 -- Manufacturing in-house vs. outsourcing 26:42 -- Most exciting use cases of the Nomoko mirror world 28:37 -- Current status of development - which cities already have a digital twin 33:00 -- Key takeaways from 4 years of entrepreneurship 38:48 -- Nilson’s favorite knowledge resources 41:25 -- Nilson’s advice to his younger-self 41:00 -- What does courage mean to Nilson Resources mentioned: University of Maastricht Nomoko A16z podcast Nomoko podcast LinkedIn If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Nilson Kufus.Support Leap Takers
David Lu (@davidjlu) is an up & coming venture capitalist based in Sydney and Singapore, who is constantly traveling the world on the hunt for great investments. He is a Partner @256 Ventures, a global cryptocurrency VC fund, investing in a portfolio of diversified digital assets. Previously, David founded Australia’s first student VC called, Textbook ventures. He also regularly writes academic papers around the topics of entrepreneurial ecosystems, startup roadmaps and early-stage fundraising. Forbes wrote an article about David with the title “Why Being A Young Investment Partner Isn't Always A Good Thing”. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Show notes: 02:50 -- How David got into Venture Capital 07:32 -- Resources for getting started with learning about Venture Capital & deciding what knowledge is relevant for your portfolio companies 11:45 -- David’s story of how he got started with Australia’s first student VC fund - Textbook Ventures. + How one of his successful investments led him to crypto. 16:20 -- David’s learnings from starting a Venture business (“Think in default scenarios”) 19:25 -- How do you react to things not going well when you grow your business + How creativity and thinking about the purpose of their fund helped Textbook Ventures to pivot 25:40 -- Riskiness of startup investing and how seed & pre-seed investing is the best way to build a relationship with promising founders 28:40 -- How VC is all about the people and how you make them feel 30:10 -- David’s investment criteria 33:14 -- David’s best investment to date 35:02 -- Unusual hobbies of David 36:43 -- Favorite books 38:05 -- Personal advisory board 40:18 -- Advice to younger self & anyone Resources mentioned: Venture Deals - Brad Feld Harry Stebbings - The Twenty Minute VC Fred Wilson Blog - USV Elad Gil Blog The Lean Startup - Eric Ries Finite and Infinite Games - James Carse 256 Ventures Textbook Ventures Virgil Capital If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: David Lu.Support Leap Takers
Estefanía Tapias (@este_tapias) is a researcher on the topic of the future of cities and entrepreneur that was listed on Forbes reputable 30 under 30 list. She is from Colombia but has been living in Switzerland for the past few years, where she co-founded WeSpace. WeSpace is a community, co-workspace and digital platform inspired by women in Zurich, where she invited me to to record this interview. She obtained her Ph.D. at ETH Zurich and worked as a researcher and lecturer on the topic of smart Cities in Zurich and Singapore (Future Cities Laboratory). We’ll talk about how Estefania took the leap from her academic career to found a co-working space, the mindset to to start your own venture, how she got featured in the Forbes 30 under 30, tools for website design, and much more. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Show notes: 03:21 -- How Estefania became fascinated with the topic of smart cities 04:32 -- Cooling Singapore project 05:22 -- The state of research in the field of climate change & cities 08:10 -- Advice on picking the right area of business or research to pursue 09:33 -- How Estefania decided what opportunity to pursue after finishing her PhD 11:50 -- How WeSpace got started and the purpose behind it. The future of targeted co-working spaces (like WeSpace which is a community and workspace inspired by women) 16:14 -- How to launch a capital-intensive business like a co-working space 17:53 -- Promoting your business initially 19:38 -- Initiatives that foster entrepreneurship among women & advantages of mixed founding teams 21:20 -- The mindset to make the jump to starting your own venture 23:40 -- The target group of WeSpace 24:25 -- Estefania’s favorite knowledge resources 26:13 -- Favorite books 27:56 -- How Estefania got featured on the Forbes 30 under 30 32:30 -- Estefania’s hobbies 33:40 -- Tools for Website design 35:15 -- Advice to your younger self - “Don’t take yourself too serious” 36:20 -- Estefania’s personal advisory board 37:40 -- Unjustified fears 38:30 -- What does courage mean to Estefania Resources mentioned: “The three most harmful addictions are heroin, carbohydrates, and a monthly salary.” - Nassim Nicholas Taleb Nuzzel: Twitter news summary Zero to one - Peter Thiel * Traction - Gabriel Weinberg Wix.com WeSpace Helen Clark If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Estefanía Tapias.Support Leap Takers
Pascal Kaufmann (@PascalKaufmann) is a neuroscientist-turned-entrepreneur, who founded Starmind - one of Europe’s leading artificial intelligence technology companies - and Mindfire - a foundation created to incentivize collaboration in AI research. Inc magazine mentioned Pascal in the same sentence with no other than Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking. In this episode we’ll talk about how Pascal became fascinated with artificial intelligence research, some of the experiments he worked on, what advice he has for aspiring entrepreneurs, and unique insights into Starmind. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Show notes: 02:38 -- How Pascal got interested in the topic of artificial intelligence 05:00 -- Scientific experiments connecting brains to machines 06:30 -- Why Pascal decided to found an AI company - Starmind 08:20 -- The general state of AI & where we are at 10:15 -- Resources to get started with a career in AI 12:30 -- Tips for aspiring entrepreneurs / mistakes to avoid 14:20 -- Insights into Starmind 15:40 -- Favorite books & movies 17:30 -- Pascal’s personal advisory board / mentors 19:10 -- Hobbies & habits to take your mind-off your startup 20:00 -- Advice to fellow entrepreneurs & future leaptakers 22:50 -- Closing thoughts - Switzerland as a hotspot for AI companies Resources mentioned: The story of Prometheus Archimedean spiral Starmind Mindfire Captain future Friedrich Nietzsche If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Pascal Kaufmann.Support Leap Takers
Daniel Naeff is the founder of Oakura, a platform where curated startups and vetted experts engage to create next generation businesses. We’ll get into what this actually means in the episode. He also served as the COO of Teralytics, one of Switzerland’s leading data analytics startups. He is also on the board of directors of the ETH Alumni - one of the world’s top 10 universities. We’ll take about bootstrapping vs. funding your company via venture capital, how to make smarter decisions as a founder, hiring the best team, favorite books, and much more. Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Show notes: 01:52 -- How and why Daniel got into entrepreneurship 07:50 -- Daniel’s time at MIT and how he got there 09:22 -- Recommendations and reasons for studying abroad 11:02 -- Diamond Heels - Daniel’s first startup 15:30 -- Teralytics and Daniel’s role 17:45 -- What is the right type of funding for your startup & how Venture Capital (VC) is broken 22:30 -- Why Daniel left Teralytics & next steps 24:20 -- Using insights to help out the next generation of startups 26:40 -- How Oakura started - Using blockchain technology to disrupt the traditional VC model 29:19 -- How to decide if you should continue or stop your current project - “Think in different scenarios” 30:20 -- Leveraging Essentialist thinking and the concept of “sunk costs” to help making important life decisions 33:20 -- Tips on hiring and assembling the best team 36:34 - Should you start a company with your friends or not? 40:00 -- What does Oakura mean 41:50 -- What’s the purpose of Oakura and how it could revolutionize the venture industry 49:20 -- How Oakura is tokenizing startup equity 51:18 -- Daniel’s favorite books 53:30 -- Unique hobbies and how to distract your mind from the daily entrepreneurial work 55:48 -- Thought experiments 58:25 -- Advice to your younger self / university students 1:00:00 -- Closing thoughts Resources mentioned: ETH Juniors “We don’t make movies to make money, we make money to make more movies.” - Walt Disney The Power of Habit - Charles Duhigg The 48 laws of power - Robert Greene * Sapiens - Yuval Noah Harari If you're enjoying the podcast, the best way to support the show is by leaving a review on iTunes or your favorite podcast app. Special Guest: Daniel Naeff.Support Leap Takers
Short introductory episode where Remo (@TheRemoKyburz) is introducing the podcast and what led him to start the LeapTakers podcast. In short: In each episode I’m interviewing unique founders, shapers, and makers that work on building the future, as well as other fascinating personalities that push boundaries in various areas, such as investing, traveling, gaming, exploring new foods, and much more. In addition to being a source of knowledge & entertainment, I want to inspire people like you with this podcast to start your own endeavour and essentially become a Leap Taker. You’ll learn: What this podcast is about and who is it for Remo’s background & why he started the podcast My unique hobbies Please follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and my Website, where I post new episodes, share cool stuff & interesting articles I found, blog occasionally, and provide glimpses into my life! Support Leap Takers
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Podcast Details

Created by
Remo Kyburz
Podcast Status
Active
Started
Jun 17th, 2019
Latest Episode
Oct 6th, 2020
Release Period
Monthly
Episodes
20
Avg. Episode Length
40 minutes
Explicit
No
Order
Episodic

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