Born in Fribourg, Switzerland, Mike Baur as a teen was fascinated by Banking and Financing. He earned his MBA at the University of Rochester, Rochester, NY. He also received executive MBA at the University of Bern, Bern, Switzerland. He spent 20 years in banking working his way up to an executive board member of a large Swiss Private Bank. By age 39, Mr. Baur founded the Swiss Startup Factory (SSUF)with the help of his two partners Max Meister and Oliver Walzer. Partnering with CTI Invest , Baur was named deputy managing director, In 2016 he led the SSUF through its accelerator program with Goldbach Group.
Mike Baur’s mission is to take these new entrepreneurs and turn there ideas into global companies that will send the normal products and business models into an upheaval. His vision is to have the best accelerator program and to set the global gold standard for other such programs. How do you get into his program? One has two times a year to fill out an extensive application for this program, February and September. There is no need to write a business plan, entrepreneurs are selected based on their application, along with a lean canvas, demonstrations, and interviews. Once accepted, there are three milestones you have to meet. The SSUF will supply you with cash to get started. If you don’t pass a milestone, you have to do it again making sure the next milestone’s deadline is still met. Unfortunately, most of the time, if you fail the first milestone you are asked to leave. Believe it or not, you are still able to keep the money you received to continue working on your idea. Once in the program, you have three months to graduate. The program itself consists of pitch training, coaching, there is a marketing research team, IT, accounting, and marketing support, product development, and access to mentors and corporate networks. One thing to keep in mind, you do have to attend numerous meetings that will be help in Zurich. Once your company is carved out, you will spend one month at one of the company’s international offices before heading back to Zurich to focus on your startup.
All and all, Mike Baur, a man who devoted most of his life in finance and business, is willing to take all his knowledge and invest it in encouraging entrepreneurs. He is a man willing to invest financially, give you the tools necessary to succeed, and share his knowledge to help a complete stranger succeed in the business world. Thank you Mike Baur.