Mark Tluszcz, President of Wix and CEO of Mangrove Capital Partner, transferred his knowledge both from his investor’s and entrepreneur’s perspective in a BStartup Talk held in Convent dels Àngels in Barcelona. Tluszcz has invested on such businesses as Skype, Wix, Walkme, Wallapop, Badi and, recently, RedPoints through BStartup and Sabadell Venture Capital. In his customary crystal clear message, he touched upon the main ingredients for a startup, summarized into five key points:
- Clear thinking and expression: “You need to know how to sell your project. For example, Skype delivered nice and simple messages”.
- Total focus on the product: “The product is everything and should be easy and simple to use”. On this point, on marketing, he highlighted the importance of storytelling: “You may have the best product in the world, but if you don’t know how to sell it… You need to work hard on your pitch”.
- Passion: “A startup is a long process and a lifestyle. You will devote a long time to it, so you need to be happy with what you do”.
- Modesty and honesty: “Be modest and honest with the people involved in the project, as well as yourself”. As regards business culture, Mark bids for grounding his business on shares for his employees: “I always try to find the best stock option plan, as the workers are the main DNA for a business”.
- Competence: “As an entrepreneur, you are creating a business that will change the world”. Besides, “a startup should be aware of the urgency and need to do things fast. You have capital on the market that must grow fast, and swiftness should be a natural way of thinking for entrepreneurs”.
Mark also gave his opinion on genre diversity in businesses, and argued that “the power of genre diversity is huge. This diversity results in an exceptional thinking process. Women see problems in a very different way from men, and it is great to analyze such situations from different perspectives”.
To finish with, Tluszcz talked about business trends, and said that “in the coming years, genomics and artificial intelligence are some of the technologies that will provide a turning point in economy”.
BANCO SABADELL AND STARTUPS
Banco Sabadell’s global strategy of support for startups covers such areas as financing, investment on capital and innovation from different directions from the bank. In 2013, Dirección de BStartup was created, including specialized branches across Spain, in an attempt to offer specialized banking services and financing; the investment vehicle BStartup10 catered for the initial stages of startups. In 2015, Sabadell Venture Capital was created with a view to providing capital investment and Venture Debt of up to 2 million euros for startups on stages Seed and Serie A. In 2017, Innocells was created as a hub for new digital businesses. Banco Sabadell have allocated 150 million euros to financing and investing on startups, and given service to 2,700 customers from this type of businesses, and around fifty startups in which it has shareholdings.
Besides, BStartup collaborates actively with the entrepreneurial ecosystem and participates and organizes a whole selection of events, including #BStartupsTalk sessions in Madrid and Barcelona with the idea of sharing valuable information with relevant international leaders and figures that serve as benchmarks for entrepreneurs.