Founder Spotlight – Marti Soosaar
Stebby was one of the first companies on Funderbeam. We asked Marti Soosaar, the founder of Stebby, to share the journey from raising money and trading to a successful exit on Funderbeam.
Why did you choose listing in Funderbeam, and did it add value?
I believe that you should get every possible help to promote your company. Since we were the first start-up to raise funds on Funderbeam, together with Sportlyzer and Shipitwise, and we needed to raise funds at the time, we wanted to use the hype that the Funderbeam launch generated in the local investor community. Also, the fact that the Funderbeam team promoted all start-ups on the platform to get their platform going and growing.
It was also an excellent idea that the company’s shares are tradable on the market. It was a new concept for start-ups back then but seemed very promising and sounded nice.
Could you share a piece of advice for fresh start-ups who are making their first steps and starting fundraising on Funderbeam? Dos and don’ts.
· promote your offer boldly to your social network and advertise as well
· still talk to investors yourself. The round will not close itself
· be clear and brief in your prospect so that the general public understands what the plans and potential returns are
· share your progress reports regularly
· treat all of your small investors as you treat your big ones
· promise returns that you cannot guarantee
· convince someone to invest more than they can afford (or you will lose friends)
· think it is done before it is done. When indications close, you still need to get the money from investors, work quickly through the agreements and sign them to get funds into the account.
What are the three most important things you learned from the whole process during those years?
1) It is good to “leave some bullets” to try different strategies or have a plan B to execute if your plan A fails. If we would had wasted all the money we raised to go to the German market and pushed over the edge, we would have just wasted it all
2) Do not worry about the stock price on Funderbeam. It will live its own life, and there is not much more you can do than develop the company.
Looking back, what would you do entirely differently?
To be honest, I think we were pretty good at closing the rounds. There are things I would do differently and more efficiently than before, but there were not such big mistakes that I would completely change.
What’s next – ready to start with a new start-up?
Yes, thanks for asking. FitQ is the new start-up (fitq.me). We build online tools for personal trainers to service their clients efficiently and remotely and increase their customer base. This is my fourth company. So far, I have always scaled the next one a lot bigger than the previous one was, so I plan to continue that streak.
Since you did not ask when we are coming to Funderbeam, I will ask it myself. The answer is that this might happen, but I think it is fairer and with a smaller risk if we already have some considerable revenue. Before that, it is too risky for the general public to invest into. Anyone who is angel investing tickets starting from 10 000 and knows the risks involved in investing companies in the pre-seed stage, please DM and ask for more information.