Startup Codeatelier: “Don’t set up a company in the hardware sector” Interview Part 2
We continue our Alumnus catch up with Codeatelier and provide you with more founders news of Waldemar and Jochen. If you missed the start, don’t forget to catch a glimpse at part 1. But finally, find our why they don’t necessarily recommend establishing a startup in the hardware sector to other entrepreneurs. Furthermore the founding duo sheds light on what’s behind the new startup project Steuerbot.
Lisa: What would be your top 3 tips then to founders or people who want to become founders? Based on your experience, that is.
Well, looking back … when you start out so green and without any experience, a strong network and a partner who can help you do things will be helpful. Ideally, it would be someone who has founded a company already, a type of mentor who ideally will have taken many of the steps already and who can offer quick and simple hints in difficult situations. One key recommendation on our part is also: Don’t set up a company on your own! Find yourself at least one or two co-founders. Simply because you need someone you can talk to and make decisions with. Our third tip is: Don’t set up a company in the hardware sector 😉
Lisa: OK, but that’s exactly what you did (laughs).
Codeatelier: Yes, but we learned from it (both laugh). But it’s an additional challenge in any event. In the hardware sector there are a lot of parameters that simply cannot be controlled. You usually get the hardware from an external supplier. Therefore you have no influence on production, which country the goods are produced in, when they’ll be delivered, and so on. These challenges disappear if you set up a pure software startup. Hardware also makes scaling harder. What’s more, you have to cover a broader spectrum of issues, which complicates the whole thing.
Lisa: Interesting lessons. Thank you for sharing them. You recently began a new project – Steuerbot. What’s the idea behind this, and how did you come up with it?
Codeatelier: Steuerbot helps people fill in their tax returns and explains in simple terms the key questions that influence a tax return. There is plenty of tax software out there already, but this only abstracts the tax forms and doesn’t actually offer any specific help about what information is required, and what I personally need to complete. This is where Steuerbot offers help. We’re in the process of seeking growth capital.
Lisa: Have you already pitched Steuerbot to investors?
Codeatelier: Not yet. But we’re lucky because Codeatelier works so well. It has meant that we’ve been able to cover the first round of financing ourselves. Now, however, we’re on the look-out for investors for Steuerbot.
Lisa: OK, great. So has the software been fully developed? When will it be hitting the market?
Codeatelier: We’re still in the development stage. The aim is to have Steuerbot on the market by the main tax period in 2018. The closer we get to the end of the year, the fewer tax returns are filled in. Therefore we want to launch it next year.
Lisa: Well I wish you both much success. What are the next steps?
Codeatelier: Currently we’re focusing on Steuerbot and establishing the team. We’re currently in talks and we’re on the look-out for nice, professional people, so get in touch J The other challenge – of course – is funding.
Lisa: Thanks for talking to us today, Jochen and Waldemar. See you again soon.
Codeatelier: We have to say: “Thank you!”