60 episodes

The Startup Foundations is a podcast where we talk to founders and entrepreneurs who have launched startups. We have conversations around the hits and misses of navigating the startup world and building a successful company from the ground up. Join me, Greg Miaskiewicz, the host of the Startup Foundations podcast as we dissect topics affecting the startup community and share founders' stories of how they landed their first customers and raised their first checks from investors.

Let the Startup Foundations podcast be the inspiration for your launch!

Startup Foundations Capbase

    • Business
    • 4.5 • 2 Ratings

The Startup Foundations is a podcast where we talk to founders and entrepreneurs who have launched startups. We have conversations around the hits and misses of navigating the startup world and building a successful company from the ground up. Join me, Greg Miaskiewicz, the host of the Startup Foundations podcast as we dissect topics affecting the startup community and share founders' stories of how they landed their first customers and raised their first checks from investors.

Let the Startup Foundations podcast be the inspiration for your launch!

    Borys Musielak: Venture Capital & Startups in Poland

    Borys Musielak: Venture Capital & Startups in Poland

    Borys Musielak is an investor, engineer, and entrepreneur, currently managing SMOK Ventures, a US venture capital fund investing in early-stage software startups in Central & Eastern Europe. Borys’ entrepreneurial experience includes co-founding Filmaster, a startup for film fans to get personalized film recommendations which got acquired by Samba TV back in 2015. Borys is also very active on the Polish startup scene, where he’s a board member of the Startup Poland foundation and has co-founded ReaktorX, a remote-first startup acceleration program.

    Borys talked to us about turning his passion for films into a successful startup that created a Netflix-like recommendation system. We discussed early Polish arthouse cinema and how Borys had grown the company from 2010 to its acquisition in 2015.

    Borys also shared why he decided to start investing and become a VC, and talked about all the things he had pioneered in the Polish startup scene, including creating a first coworking space dedicated to startups, an accelerator program, and events that contributed to growing the Polish startup community.

    We also discuss the evolution of the Polish and Eastern European startup scene, and why large enough domestic markets can be detrimental to the creation of innovative startups on a global scale. Borys also shares very interesting insights regarding the Polish and European VC scene and highlights the niches developing within the Polish startups.

    • 33 min
    Kim Roxie: Helping women enhance their beauty

    Kim Roxie: Helping women enhance their beauty

    Kim Roxie is the founder and CEO of LAMIK Beauty, licensed esthetician, motivational speaker, philanthropist and community advocate. Her company is creating makeup products made with organic ingredients that help women of color enhance their beauty.

    In our conversation we talked about Kim’s background, running a beauty salon, developing her own formulas for beauty products, and how she got the idea to start her own company.

    We discuss how Kim’s customers helped to shape LAMIK Beauty products and getting the initial funds to start the company from a crowdfunding campaign and pitch competitions.

    We also talk about the startups and recent exits in the beauty industry, and how that space has been getting more and more traction in the recent years, after being overlooked by tech for a long time.

    • 27 min
    Aaron Bailey: Community based marketplaces

    Aaron Bailey: Community based marketplaces

    Aaron Bailey is the CEO & co-founder of Builtfirst, a startup building cloud marketplace platform. Aaron’s company streamlines creation of community-based marketplaces and modernizes how SaaS and services are discovered and purchased.

    Aaron talked about his background, the time he spent as head of global partnerships at 500 Startups, and how that influenced his decision to start his own company, Builtfirst.

    Aaron shared how the product has changed to meet the needs of users, shifting from a focus on accelerators and VC funds to a focus on anyone who wants to recommend trusted vendors to their online communities.

    We also cover finding the right co-founders for a startup, distributing equity between founders and early employees, and the advantages of hiring remotely.

    • 32 min
    Dr. Roshawnna Novellus: Bridging the funding gap for women and people of color

    Dr. Roshawnna Novellus: Bridging the funding gap for women and people of color

    Dr. Roshawnna Novellus is the founder and CEO of EnrichHER, a Techstars backed FinTech lending platform that streamlines capital deployment process for individual and institutional investors who want to support businesses led by women and people of color. EnrichHER has been in-market since 2019, deploying $14M in capital to traditional businesses from 47 states.

    In our conversation with Dr. Roshawnna we talk about many obstacles facing small business owners, women of color in particular, when trying to raise capital for their companies. We also discuss Roshawnna’s backstory and how she got into entrepreneurship.

    Dr. Roshawnna shares her insights regarding lending landscape for small businesses and speaks on systemic bias and discrimination against black women in the financial ecosystem.

    We also cover different types of financing available through Roshawnna’s company, and talk about the early days of building the product. Roshawnna gives her thoughts on what are the most important traits to look for when hiring employees and shares lessons learned from her experience of going through Techstars accelerator.

    • 30 min
    Rogelio Caceres: Enabling digital nomads

    Rogelio Caceres: Enabling digital nomads

    Rogelio Caceres is a serial entrepreneur, currently serving as the founder and CEO of Global Residency & Citizenship Group (Global RCG), a startup enabling digital nomads to move abroad and stay compliant with the international employment laws.

    In our conversation with Rogelio we talked about how Global RCG is simplifying lives of digital nomads, the US immigration system along with its flaws and shortcomings, and the trends behind people looking for more flexibility around where they work.

    Rogelio also discusses how he got the idea to work on mobility solutions and international compliance, his initial fundraising experiences and shares his advice for first-time founders.

    We also speak on how employment laws may hinder workers mobility, why people working in corporations and bigger companies have a hard time getting a green light to work abroad, the intricacies and challenges of international compliance for digital nomads and which countries have modified their immigration laws to cater to the needs of digital nomads and the changing economy.

    • 30 min
    Cheryl Contee: Democratizing entrepreneurship for women of color

    Cheryl Contee: Democratizing entrepreneurship for women of color

    Cheryl Contee is an entrepreneur, investor, writer, founder of a digital marketing agency Do Big Things, and currently the CEO of the Impact Seat Foundation, an organization that aims to level the playing field for women of color who want to become successful business leaders. Over the course of her career, Cheryl was also successful in building Attentive.ly, a social listening and marketing automation startup focused on developing tools for non-profits.

    In our conversation, we discuss Cheryl’s work with Attentive.ly, and how she co-founded the company as a spin-off of her digital marketing company Do Big Things. We talk about the market for building tools for non-profit organizations and how Cheryl has built the company over the years and eventually exited to Blackbaud in 2016.

    We also dig deeper into the evolution of the startup funding ecosystem, and its many flaws and shortcomings. Particularly lack of support for female founders and founders of color. Cheryl recalls her first fundraising experiences and shares interesting insights into why the VC world isn’t willing to fund diverse founders.

    Cheryl also shares the mission of the Impact Seat Foundation, and how it's trying to democratize business leadership and make it more accessible to women of color.

    • 32 min

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2 Ratings

2 Ratings

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