My start-up idea

I wanted to build a start-up to create a smartphone application linked to a website made to help people find local farm food producers and facilitate interactions between them. I started thinking about this idea when I noticed that there are more and more people in France trying to eat healthier and eco-friendlier food, especially organic vegetables, fruits, meat. To that extent, they try to avoid industrial food as much as possible because they often can’t be sure about where it comes from (which causes environment problems if it was imported from far away for instance), or if chemicals have been added to the food, etc. Thus, they tend to prefer to buy food directly from some local farmers which are supposed to produce more organic and eco-friendly food. But when I tried to find local producers around where I live, I couldn’t find any really close on the internet. In fact, they can be difficult to find because most of them get their clients thanks to word of mouth. That’s why I want to make an application which would help people get connected with the local farm products producers around them, and make the interactions between them easier.

Collecting feedback

I wanted to target more precisely my potential customers, so I had to know who would be interested in my idea. Thus, I got in touch with seven people from different places (cities and countryside), with different age (from 20 to 72 years old), different social background. These people were mostly family and friends but there were also a couple of people I’ve met on the website, which is a film critic website. It seems that it is a quite random range of people but in fact it is very varied, as I wanted, and I think one of the most interesting feedback came from one of my interviews with a guy on because as I didn’t really know him (we’ve had exchanged a bit about some films before) and because of the sometimes coarse-mind of cinema critics, he felt really free to tell me truly what he thought about my idea, even if it is obviously non-related with cinema. He specifically gave me a feedback on my pitch rather than my idea because he didn’t seem quite interested into it in fact. So now I know I have to work on my pitch and be more precise so people understand easily my offer.

Now let’s get to the point. I’ve noticed that my idea could interest mostly people who live in small towns or in the countryside because it seems quite annoying for people in big cities to have to go in the countryside to get their products, where the farmers are located. People in the countryside seem very interested into farm products but are not very interested into a website and even less an app because they already have their own habits and contacts. Actually, my primary target could be people 30 to 50 years’ old living in small or medium towns. I’ve received from one of them this idea of making a sort of subscription system to a farm food producer which could provide information on what products are available at a certain time. For instance, if a farmer has just finished to gather tomatoes, then he notifies to the app that tomatoes are now available for sale, and it would send a message to his subscribers who could then come buy some, etc. It could be really useful for people living in small or medium towns because they are not so close to the farm food producers to get these information, but they are still close enough to drive a couple of miles to get there.

Will I change my idea?

I will surely do slight changes because the feedbacks I’ve received are very interesting. Now I have a more precise view of who could be a potential customer of my service. Also, I really like the part about the different features that these people would like to see in the app. I feel it’s almost like working closely to the customers already, and I think it is one of the exiting things of developing a new product. Finally, I appreciated the feedbacks on my pitch because some people didn’t really understand the concept I was explaining so obviously I have to work on that. It reminds me of the pitches I’ve heard during the STHLM Tech event, which were not always clear so even if there were probably good ideas, I wasn’t always convinced because it wasn’t so evident to understand what they offered to the customers.


The course is over  and I want to thank Professor Serdar for teaching.

I believe the objectives of the course were clear: define and analyze the successful factors in technology-based entrepreneurship in order to develop a startup with a defined methodology  and learn how to analyze situations from a strategic perspectives.
All the contents analyzed during the lectures were are useful for those who want to start a new business, those who are managing an existing one but even for the students aiming to work in a consolidated company as it provided elements valid through all the business areas.

One of the main lessons learnt was to be not too much tied to the technology of the innovation. In proposing a new idea, most of the investors do not have the required expertise to understand the technology under the idea. Also, I learnt that it is not beneficial to explain all the technological details during a presentation.  What the investor wants to know is the problem, the solution proposed, how the business makes money and the costs faced. This elements  are not so obvious for an entrepreneur without a business background.

Another important knowledge acquired was that listening to the customer is fundamental for the success of the business. Firstly, it is important to establish who are the customers going to buy the products as it is not always clear. Secondly, the company has to be able to understand how the product should be to meet the customer needs. A product made according to the engineers needs is not likely at all to penetrate the markets.

Furthermore, the guest lectures provided us the practical knowledge useful to understand how a startups is run. They gave us suggestions and clarified some entrepreneurial doubts. Most notably, I enjoyed the guest lecture by Bill Schacht. Probably, as a result of the market in which his business operates, he knows how to capture the attention of the audience.

As far as I am concerned, before starting the course I had no intention in starting a new business. However, the topics faced during the course inspired me bringing myself to take into consideration the adventure of a startup. I learnt that starting a new business puts at risk great part of the life and not everyone is able to make this decision.

The dynamic approach held by Serdar during the frontal lecture was really beneficial for all of us as students: he induced us to interact and to think personally. This is what I appreciated the most. I agree on taking into account for the grading the participation both in-class and outside. However, not all the students embraced this invitation as an incentive to participate and grow personally.

Moreover, we, as entrepreneurs, must be able to think, take decisions under pressure and in short time. The teacher tried to pose us in a situation as much as close to the real environment. But the rest depends on ourselves. We must have the initiative to learn and understand the issues in-depth.  This course was a useful training for the startups world, allowing us to learn our mistakes and get feedbacks from professionals in the area. In particular, the presentation of the ideas held on the May 9th was a special event and a crucial moment for us to learn as entrepreneurs. I got important feedbacks that I hope to exploit in my future career as entrepreneur.


See you and good luck to everyone!

Anchr as a startup-company has earlier tested their prototypes on international students and collected feedback from them to be used in later prototypes. Rather than presenting a prototype I chose to discuss the general concept of Anchr with a few selected friends with different backgrounds that all fit the demographics of the potential Anchr user. Here’s a a short presentation of the potential customers/friends I discussed the idea with:

Lukas, 24, Engineering Student.

Christian, 24, Business Student.

Adèle, 23, Artist and incoming design student.

Oskar, 24, Management Consultant.

Marcus, 24, Investment Banking Analyst.

How did you find these people?

They are friends of mine. I had lunch/dinner with them on different occasions during the last month or so and, while at it, I took the time to discuss Anchr in an informal setting.

Which feedback did you get from them? 

All of them were really intrigued by the idea of Anchr. Primarily, the idea of being close to augmented reality and having information from several internet information providers in one app were something that all of them seemed to see a need for. However, after that several questions were raised, ranging from the UX to the actual business model. Here are some points that were discussed:

  • What is the appropriate business model?
    • 3 out of 5 were willing to pay a small price for premium features. However, the three that were willing to pay for it wanted to pay around 50 kr maximum as a one time cost. Motivations included that if the price is too high they would rather use multiple apps or search engines rather than Anchr.
    • None of them had any problem with advertisements as long it didn’t distract from the user experience. Instagram and Tinder were brought up as good examples apps with non-distracting ads.
  • What is the user interface?
    • Most of them imagined it to be similar to Google Maps but with more information. Since the UI isn’t set in stone we discussed it further. Lukas brought up the idea of the UI being like reddit, where geographic content nearby gets up/down-voted so you always have a clear view of that’s worth doing.
  • Why has not this been done before?
    • We discussed potential difficulties in collecting information and potential risks with losing access to this information from major information providers.

How do you think how you found these people and who they are influences the feedback you received?

It of course matters a lot. Lukas, Oskar and Markus which all have an engineering background were more tech-oriented in their questions. Moreover, I think that the discussion benefitted from me being friends with them, since it allowed them speak freely and not adjust themselves to any expectations from my part.

Will you change your idea based on their feedback, why, why not?

The general idea remains the same, but there are many things that I take with me in terms of business model feedback and potential risks. Since the idea of Anchr in very inclusive at the moment, I think the biggest challenge that lies ahead is to narrow the scope of the application.

I have discussed our Venture Project with some potential customers. Based on the feedback from the class I have chosen to expand the service we will provide to include all services, not just hair cuts, because it will make the service more useful and more customers can benefit from the service. We have also chosen to include all appointments available but with the option to provide a discount for a time that is close in time. So this will be a booking system for all types of services and you can sort them by area.

People I have asked for feedback have been  two hair dressers and a masseuse near Stadion in Stockholm and 3 regular customers and this is their feedback:

2 Hairdressers and a masseuse: They think it is a good idea, it would help them to have a good booking system where their customers can find an appointment. The possibility of dynamic pricing is very limited today but only one of the hairdressers I asked thought it was a good idea. Her salon was a bit more high end than the other salon and it did also not really have the possibility of drop in because it is almost always fully booked. The other hairdresser said that this was a good idea as for a booking system but that he wasn’t interested in dynamic pricing because he had drop in. The masseuse thought it was a good idea because this would be like marketing.
3 Customers: Appreciate an easier way of finding services in the surrounding area. This might increase competition between service provider because it it easier for the customer to compare the services and the prices. Require that many join the service for it to be beneficial for all customers.

To get reliable feedback more extensive interviews need to be conducted but this has established the need for this kind of service on the market. None of the people questioned have any budget responsibility but the hairdressers and masseuse thought it would be reasonable pay a small fee on every purchase to finance this kind of service. The potential customers that were interviewed are all friends and family which might make their feedback extra positive.

The improvements suggested are good and have been included but with a larger target market it will take longer before this service have a big share of the potential market but I absolutely think that it is possible!




This weekend, members of the groups Star-Tup and IMBATECH held an informal entrepreneurship evening with very rewarding discussions regarding our ideas and preparing for the exam. We also got to take a look at a product of a start-up that Jonatan is currently helping, Narrative. This little camera helped us document the evening.

Photo taken by the Narrative clip.

Photo taken by the Narrative clip.

Both groups received some valuable feed-back, from both internal and external advisors, on their ideas and we had a lot of fun.