Today our speaker is Roy Bahat, head of Bloomberg Beta and a What’s Cookin’ investor. He started Bloomberg Beta in 2013 after a handful of jobs that even he did not feel he was qualified for. He wanted to make work better. He believes the fastest way to make change is to build extraordinary technology companies. Along with heading Bloomberg Beta, he also teaches a media course at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business and serves on the board of a non-profit.
When a startup is looking for a potential investor, they should remember that investors see a lot of companies and they are looking for companies with a specific business model. The smartest investors will have a narrow focus area like Bloomberg Beta. They only invest in companies that can improve someone’s professional experience. There are a range of different business models so companies cannot be compared to other companies that aren’t in the same field.
When speaking about how young people starting startups can attract investors, Roy suggested that being a founder of a startup is like any occupation and that they should become proficient at a lot of different tasks within the company. If anyone at any other profession gives only one reason to their success, it is probably nonsense. Starting a startup is a trade, something someone can practice and get better at.
Founders of a startup can find success even if they may not have the experience. Often the first question asked is “where do I start?”. A good place to start is figuring out who you admire and start researching their paths to success.
Something that could detract investors is inflation and rising interest rates. Investors are moving money into startups because bonds have little to no money with the interest rates low. Once the interest rates go up, money will be moved out of startups and into other companies. Also, the source of the money for the investors are other investors and if the interest rates go up, those investors will diminish.
In order to find success as a startup, focus on what doesn’t change. Don’t focus on what is the trend. Look at what’s important and what’s not working and focus on that. Compete with bigger companies for their funding or go to those companies for investors. Checkout an accelerator in the community. Also consider what is the perspective of the investor. Give them a reason to believe in the company. Investors need a reason to think the startup is memorable. If they respond to an email or cut a check, they are interested.
This talk with Roy was not only informative, especially since What’s Cookin’ is a startup, but also easy to listen and follow. Sometimes when listening to a speaker there tends to be a lot of big words, jumbled sentences and a lot of information that goes over my head. Roy has a way of explaining it in a way that makes sense.
If you would like to listen to other informative videos from Roy, check out his daily video show #thisisnotadvice. If you would like to reach out to Roy Bahat you can find him at the links below.