In 2013, Mike Baur pulled a surprise career move when he ditched his six-figure banking job at a leading Swiss Banker to venture into the startup world. The stringent rules enacted in the global banking sector in the wake of the banking crisis witnessed in the US in 2008, had effectively taken away all the joy out of the banking realm as far as Mike Baur was concerned. One year later he’d left the banking world and teamed up with two other tech-investors to start the Swiss Startup Factory. His partners being, Oliver Walzer and Max Leister.
Mike’s Early Days
The visionary capitalist grew up in a tiny town in rural Switzerland called Freiburg. Being Swiss, banking was always going to be the ultimate aspiration for the young Mike. True to that, Baur was already working as a banker in his teens. The banker is an alumnus of the Universities of Rochester and Bern. He was fortunate to land a lucrative apprentice position at one of the nation’s leading financial institutions, Union Bank of Switzerland before he was even twenty years old. Later, owing to his outstanding business analytical mind, Baur landed loftier jobs at prestigious banking firms like UBS and Clariden Leu.
Why Swiss Factory?
Mike knew all too well the daunting obstacles young tech startup innovators face when building their ideas and concepts. Top among these challenges was, the capital required to kick-start the app’s development cycle. Mike solved the finance issues, and many other pressing concerns for the aspiring tech entrepreneurs by setting up a modern indoor facility inside one of Switzerland’s thriving metropolises.
Everyone was welcomed at the Swiss Startup Factory premises to use the free office space and Internet. It was also a fantastic space to mingle with like-minded tech impresarios. Most importantly, however, Swiss Startup Factory was a special place where young minds came to be molded and shaped in preparation for taking on the day-to-day challenges they are poised to encounter as they nurture and grow their startups. The institute houses a dozen or more globally acclaimed entrepreneurs who act as mentors and financiers to the students at Swiss Startup Factory.
Tech Startup Contest
In 2014, Mike Baur officiated a tech startup’s competition, START Summiteer, held at the Swiss University. START Summiteer is an annual contest that invites incubator firms to come pitch their models, plans, and ideas. The competition only accepts startup incubator firms valued over one million dollars. The winning startup accelerator firm, however, gets to walk away with many perks and bucks, including funding. Baur’s previously served in high-profile positions at startup mentoring firms like CTI Invest and SSUF.
Continue reading about the impact of the Swiss Startup Factory by Mike Baur.