Although Mike Baur started working at the early age of 16, his banking career didn’t really take off until he was offered an apprenticeship at Union Bank of Switzerland in 1991. From there, Mr. Baur was set on the fast track, even surpassing the expectations of his hiring manager. Mike worked his way through a number of companies, increasing his value as a financial expert and building an impressive portfolio of his own. The recession changed all of that, however.
Following the recession, Baur found that the rules of banking had changed, as had his passion for the industry that had been so generous in the past. Mike knew it was time for a change and, as it happened, he was already developing an interest in a new field. Baur wanted to help young entrepreneurs with their initial startup technology companies.
In 2014, Mike Baur launched Swiss Startup Factory, a company designed to help those young tech savvy innovators. The company, which Mike founded with long-time friend Max Meister, assists young entrepreneurs by providing training and mentoring services, as well as financially backing especially promising startups. By teaming up clients with successful tech company executives, chances of success for each new startup receives an unparalleled boost.
Additionally, Mike Baur takes place in a pitching competition, START Summiteer, which is hosted by participating Swiss universities. The competition provides tech startup founders an arena to discuss their companies, products, and goals. Only those with less than $1 million in backing are eligible to participate in START Summiteer and Baur joins a panel of judges who evaluate each tech startup and select one winner. While only one company can win the prize, the competition often helps several companies attract investors interested in providing funding for their startups.
Swiss Startup Factory, or SSUF, is different from most similar organizations, because it operates independently from larger corporations with agendas of their own. This means there’s less red tape and wider freedom in determining how best to ensure success for all of its clients.
Currently, Mike Baur has his hand in several pots, from working at Think Reloaded to serving on the board of directors for BV4, but his primary focus is still on SSUF. Baur devotes most of his professional time to securing financing and funding for the many startup businesses benefiting from Swiss Startup Factory’s generosity.
As it turned out, Mike Baur’s decision to leave the banking industry has had long-lasting benefits on countless new tech businesses.
BandB June 5, 2017