Tech entrepreneur, Adrian Black, visited the Launchpad studio this week to share his experience in successfully founding and scaling early-stage technology ventures.
In the mid-1990s Adrian was part of the first generation of dotcom pioneers as founding CTO of an early UK internet start-up, later becoming CEO and generating a return for new owners with a trade sale of the business. Today, Adrian is Managing Director at Bio-Sep, leading the transition of the CleanTech business from its R&D stage into a commercial enterprise. He also founded NorthRow Ltd, a RegTech business which he scaled to a Series A+ round as CEO.
When asked what piece of advice he would give those at the beginning of their start-up journey he said: “Relentless perseverance – don’t just focus on your solution, do your homework, demonstrate there is a large market and then persevere to get the investment you need to see it through. There will be countless times when you’ll want to give it up, but believe in yourself and keep going.
“Building your team is extremely important in this. Understand your strengths and recognise your weaknesses, ensuring these are covered by the rest of your team. Being a sole founder is so much harder, and it’s a lonely place at times. A strong team of co-founders with the confidence to execute their vision is what investors want to see but co-founders can also really keep each other motivated when times get tough.”