You won´t own the Company you Started

You won´t own the Company you Started

If after reading this, you only need to remember two concepts, here they are:

  1. We all have Ideas. The challenge is executing them (and executing them well).
  2. If you do well, you will not be the owner of your own company.

Two weeks ago, with my dear friend and partner, Jose Gettas, we were interviewing a new candidate for COR.

  • “What I would like the most is to start my own company” said the interviewee.
  • “And why don’t you do it?”, we asked him.
  • Because I haven’t found a good idea yet.
  • You haven’t? What do you like to do?
  • I love musical instruments. I am passionate about seeing the newest releases, comparing them… everything.
  • Do you experience any problems during that search / comparison?
  • Yes, no website lets me easily compare and understand which one suits me best
  • How convinced are you of this?
  • Very. I have been researching for years and I cannot find any.
  • And do you think many people have this same problem?
  • Yes, a ton of people over the world have the same problem.
  • So… you’re saying you didn’t have an idea? 🙂

Now that you 1) found a problem that you would be passionate about solving, 2) in a huge market, go start your business.

The conversation continued…

  • “It is true. It happens that today I want to gain experience and COR is a tech company with high growth where I can learn everything I need to then start my own business”, said the interviewee.
  • “And what motivates you to start your own business?”, we asked.
  • Being the owner, keeping the profits.
  • If you are really looking to start a tech company with the ambition to lead the market in which you operate, it is most likely that, if it goes well, you will need to add new investors and valuable talent. All of them will have shares in your company. And the more you grow, the less shares you will have, but each day they will be worth more. Therefore, if you do well, owning and keeping all the profits is something that will not happen to you. So my advice, if I could give you any, is: if you’re looking to be the owner, your company probably won’t have a massive impact.

Focus on being the best by solving what hurts you and so many people. If you succeed in solving that, you will win. 

If you want to solve a big problem, COR might be the answer. We are proud to have a great team and great investors 100% focused on healing the creative industry worldwide, a very big problem that greatly challenges us.

And I am personally proud that each and every collaborator at COR holds shares of the company… shares that have grown over 2,000% in 3 years.

*This is a true anecdote and as it says, it applies mostly to startups who want to be high growth tech companies.

Intrapreneurs: those who help to rebuild companies

Intrapreneurs: those who help to rebuild companies

Those who until now have become rich by offering a personalized service of intermediation between the offeror and the buyer are now scratching their heads, looking for ways to reinvent themselves. New products or technological platforms have come to replace them and their challenge to adapt is, at this moment, brutal. I’m talking about real estate / travel / car rental agents, among other intermediary companies. Will they die?

Those who reinvent themselves will have to maintain the service, but modify the channel, offering consumers a direct solution, where they can access the product from anywhere and at any time.

Suffice it to say that this started years ago, and today there are leading tech companies in all these verticals, starting with Amazon, Zillow and Carvana. But it is worth mentioning that today it is already penetrating every corner of every sector by leaps and bounds.

And those who do not ride the wave will, for the most part, crash. However, there will be room for a few of the old schoolers, whose added value will be an intangible that few can afford.

Does this mean “I need to learn how to code”? Not necessarily. “Do I look for another job?” Not necessarily.

We need companies to reinvent themselves. We need intrapreneurs; that is, entrepreneurs within companies. And we need the concepts of Lean Startup, Design Thinking and Canvas to stop being synonymous only with startups and to be implemented in large or already established structures, even in state entities.

We have to learn to work in a different way. We need to listen to consumers again and understand what they want or need.

We need to rethink what was already proven and begin to validate new paths. It is essential to develop a cheap and fast MVP (minimum viable product) to launch and then continuously improve, focusing on real and big pains. It is important to reformulate again. The faster we do, the less time it will take to correct.

The teams that carry out these projects must be interdisciplinary. The ideal partner for the product developer is the one who can sell the product, whether to customers, partners, investors or employees.

Countless entrepreneurs approach me assuming that they have found the solution to a problem, when in the end it is only their assumption about a problem. Entrepreneurs, as well as intrapreneurs, need to validate and iterate with real customers.

The paradigm has changed and the elephants need to focus on becoming partridges.

Entrepreneurship is not just starting a new business, it is a way of life.

How the Future is created

How the Future is created

Wallets without cash, streets without cabs, restaurants without waiters, highways without tollbooth staff. Are they all on strike? Have they robbed you? It would be strange if I say that we are not talking about poor places or protest contexts. Stranger if I say that this reality, which we could categorize pejoratively, is the future, or the present, and it occurs in the richest places in the world.

Having just returned from a trade mission to the United States, I am thinking about what will happen to our jobs. Innovation is in power. And the advancement of technology that separates generations, as it is today between millennials and Gen X, will begin to happen more frequently. Robot vacuum cleaners, machines that fold and store laundry, this is a reality in some corners of Silicon Valley.

Having two jobs is now commonplace. Uber, Airbnb, CookApp make it possible to turn your car into a cab, your house into a hotel, your dining room into a restaurant. Information is taken from social networks, products are bought online. This is not news. What is disturbing is that there are millions of people trying to hack traditional systems with intangible platforms.

And just as Mark Zuckerberg and his friends turned Facebook into the most important means of communication in the world, without generating content, countless young people are not thinking about developing hospitals or schools, but about how to provide the world with more effective solutions. And this world is full of opportunities. It is a huge ecosystem, public and private, made up of investors, government entities, universities, collective workspaces, and more, that allow these people to create the future.

How can we make this happen in Argentina as well?

Silicon Valley is not a neighborhood, nor a city. It is an area made up of different locations, whose name comes from the silicon chip manufacturing that took place years ago. Today, it is home to many of the world’s largest technology companies and thousands of start-ups. New York is following in their footsteps at a very interesting pace, while Miami and Austin are looking to jump on the same bandwagon.

Each of the main factors that allow this ecosystem to be successful deserves a chapter. Among these: access to venture capital (U.S. companies invest some u$s 52 million per year in start-ups); public policies (tax benefits, corporate structures opened in two hours), credits (3% annual rate), security and legitimacy of institutions (essential to generate a context of trust for those seeking to share spaces with third parties) and free competition from businesses that see start-ups as an interesting target and generate quality services at competitive costs.

Many entities and entrepreneurs in our country have been noticing this for some time. That is why, from the Government of the City of Buenos Aires, Endeavor, IAE, ASEA, Junior Achievement and a group of accelerators, incubators, investment funds and co-working spaces, we are generating new initiatives to help and empower entrepreneurs at different stages, promoting a new bill, offering free mentoring, scholarships, training and seed capital from the government.


Santi and COR help creative teams
take their work and talent to
the next level

– Forbes