1:06 - Summarizing your life in 10 year spans
6:32 - Deciding to focus on just one thing
11:11 - What made UNIC special?
19:53 - Escaping the bootstrapping trap
50:06 - Being acquired by Dynatrace
Mathias is an accomplished entrepreneur, board member and investor, with multi-year expertise in digital transformation. Together with Simon Scheurer, Mathias co-founded Qumram in 2011 and led it in different roles - CEO, Head of Business Development and Sales - until the successful exit and trade-sale in November 2017 to Dynatrace.
He met his co-founder Simon at UNIC, one of the mother companies of the Swiss Startup Mafia. Mathias thinks what set UNIC apart was its founder team's commitment to hiring entrepreneurially-minded people who could handle a lot of responsibility. When he first heard about Simon Scheurer's idea to start recording the internet's history, Mathias decided to take the entrepreneurial plunge himself, and so qumram was founded.
During his time at Qumram he learned many valuable lessons, namely:
1. Bootstrap at your own peril: If you bootstrap, you'll be so dependent on your first customers and on your next deal that you will most likely pivot too much, and lose sight of your long term strategy.
2. It's your product: Always making the customer happy is not the way to build a big company. Always be very customer-centric, but don't let your customer own your product roadmap.
3. What not to do: If you've got generalists for founders, your first hires should be specialists, for the sake of focus and strategy — because strategy is less about what to do and more about what not to do.
4. The most important "win" comes from sales — then fundraising, and only then stuff like awards.
5. Having a bunch of money is useful if you want to scale up; otherwise it's not necessarily a recipe for success.
6. When managing the exit, if you go for the best possible price, you might not get the best possible fit, and then the earnout period can be a bit rough.
"When you move to a foreign country, no one knows you. It's a great time to start finding yourself."
"The 'always make your customer happy' mindset is not really ideal to build a broader company."
Don't forget to give us a follow on our Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Linkedin accounts, so you can always stay up to date with our latest initiatives. That way, there's no excuse for missing out on live shows, weekly give-aways or founders dinners!