99. Startups: Unicorns vs 10M€ bootstrapped companies?

In this episode André is talking with António Lucena de Faria. António is from Porto and has over 40 years of experience in building and managing companies and start-ups — because he started when he was a teenager! He led the creation and development of more than 10 companies, having started his first IT company with the launch of Methodus Sistemas in 1987. He is a founding member of Startup Portugal, representing Fábrica de Startups. At Fábrica, António is designing, validating and adjusting the Business Model, and contacting investors and entrepreneurs. Promoting the business and finding business opportunities. Fábrica de Startups is an innovation hub, providing acceleration to startups in three stages: pre-validation (problem and solution validation), validation (product and market) and launch (go-to-market), and where starting entrepreneurs can seek help in developing their business ideas and growing their startups.

Main topics covered:

📈 How to be a successful entrepreneur?

🤔 What are the differences between Unicorns and 10M€ companies?

⚡️ Is it possible to develop a startup in line with your passions in this demand-driven economy?

🔎 How to find your niche?

Time notes:

Introduction of guest [1:00]

How did COVID-19 affect António’s business [3:00]

António’s experience working in the USA in 80s [4:30]

Why only a fraction of people become entrepreneurs? [10:00]

Being entrepreneur is a risk. But in life you have many more things that involve risks, yet you face them.

Are we close to the fifth era of entrepreneurship? [14:00]

Are people meant to be solo entrepreneurs considering our need for social approval? [17:30]

Creating DAOs online, NFT’s & tokens [23:00]

What is the future of 5-day work week? [32:00]

People think of becoming entrepreneurs because it’s all what is on their mind.

Everyone of us is an entrepreneur.

The first thing we have to overcome is fear.

Finding a co-founder for your entrepreneurial journey [36:00]

Productivity is very simple to measure with the amount of effort you put and the result you produce.

António’s hobbies: blockchain, NFT’s & daughter YouTuber [39:20]

Life is Cascais [42:00]

How does a day in life of António look like [43:30]

Fábrica de Startups [45:40]

My full time job is helping people to become a successful entrepreneurs.

What was the inspiration for creating a startup accelerator? [48:40]

What can I do to let people know that this is not the way?

Start-up Lisboa [56:00]

Is it possible to develop successful business based on your wishes and needs rather than focusing on demand [59:30]

Start-up has a good point of not being successful, but it still produces a lot of value.

Breeding start-ups into Unicorns — Startup factory in Lisbon [1:05:00]

What can change in cities to encourage more entrepreneurs [1:09:50]

Most important learning is not during the school time. It is later on.

Developing a incentive program for entrepreneurs [1:13:00]

Smaller companies in Portugal are less productive than bigger ones — is it true? [1:16:40]

What should be cities doing in terms of policy towards entrepreneurship creation [1:22:00]

All these problems are actually big opportunities.

New technology António would learn if he had 3 free months [1:26:00]

What makes me happy in the morning is that I have so many things that I want to learn.

Recommendations [1:28:30]

What advice António would give to younger self [1:34:10]

A business will teach you more than any MBA.

Life doesn’t stop at a given age. It stop only when it stops — when you die.

António recommends:

📕 E-Myth by Michael Gerber

📕 Business Model Generation by Alexander Osterwalder

📕 Four Steps to the Epiphany by Steve Blank

📕 Are you ready to succeed? by Srikumar Rao


This podcast was hosted by André Marquet, with research done by Evelina Bogdiun and sound edited by Miguel Sousa.

The Productized Podcast is a series of interviews with product innovators, successful makers, and entrepreneurs. We hope to inspire the listeners of this show to be courageous and productize!

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