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Ann Nolan

Plan For The Perfect Home

Mike Baur, A Small Business’s best friend!

Mike Baur grew up in Freiburg, Switzerland. Freiburg is the capital of the Swiss canton of Fribourg and the district La Sarine. It is located on both sides of the river Saane/ La Sarine, on the Swiss Plateau and is an important economic, and educational center on the cultural border between German and French Switzerland, thus it is no surprise that Mike Bauer began his banking career as a commercial apprentice with Union Bank of Switzerland at the very young age of only 16. He received an MBA from University of Rochester New York and an Executive MBA from University of Bern.

After dedicating nearly 20 years to a career in Swiss private banking, in 2014 Bauer took a giant leap into his entrepreneurial future and, at the age of 39 he, along with co-founders Max Meister, Oliver Walzer and canine companion Mexx – their highly loyal and trustworthy chief of Security, founded Swiss Startup Factory, a company dedicated to assisting Swiss entrepreneurs with start-up tech companies by providing helpful mentoring and training services as well as funding and even rent free office space for a few months. The education the start-up techs receive is invaluable and help to teach them about securing investors, marketing and ultimately how to succeed going forward. Without Mike Bauer, most of these companies would have never gotten off the ground.

In addition, Baur invests a lot of time and private financing in Swiss youth entrepreneurship. He encourages qualifying start-ups to enter pitching contests such as START Summiteer which occurs at Swiss university. At START Summiteer, seasoned financial experts evaluate the startups, and rate several aspects of their plans and ultimately decide who wins. The winner usually receives substantial investments. Bauer serves as one of the judges at these competitions.

In addition to Swiss Startup Factory, Bauer also created and runs Think Reloaded, a company that provides more sophisticated financial advice for affluent clients, though he still works for Swiss Startup Factory where his primary concentration is on financing and fund raising.

In 2016 SSUF partnered with CTI Invest thus Mike Bauer is now CTI Invest’s managing director. Further, Bauer led SSUF through its media accelerator program and its partnership with Fintech Fusion.

With Mike Bauer paving the way for Switzerland’s tech startup companies, Zurich may become Europe’s Silicon Valley!

 

Brian Bonar Explains How Companies Can Snag Federal Contractor Contracts

Finance executive, Brian Bonar points out there is one sector of the economy that always remains poised for growth: the federal government and more entrepreneurs should take advantage. The government spends hundreds of billions of dollars that is passed through to the states.

A large portion of that money goes directly to small companies, moreover, the government has set a goal that a percentage of state issued contracts be directed to small businesses. According to the Dalrada Corporation CEO, Brian Bonar, every small businesses should look into the opportunity of snagging a government contract.

“Government contracts are plentiful yet the screening process is challenging so patience is critical,” says Bonar. The road to a government contract is not easy. They can be fickle, and contracting standards and guidelines can be inflexible. On average, it may take a new businesses approximately two years to develop the required expertise to land a contract, but its highly advisable you take a shot at selling your services. As Bonar points out in the Bitsylink article,”How to be an Accomplished Finance Executive…,”you must be versatile to meet various company cultures.

Research To Find Opportunities

PR Newswire, Brian Bonar suggests locating those agencies, and sub-agencies that are better suited to purchase your services and learn how they network. If you offer something the government frequently needs most likely it will be found in the government’s GSA schedule. Each forecasts for products and services will list contact information. Businesses can also find contract opportunities on the Federal Biz Opps website. Currently, there are nearly 30,000 vendor opportunities.

Vendors also need to enroll in the federal contractor registration database since officials often perform database searchese to award state contracts. Once registered, vendors that meet specific guidelines are prompted to complete more advanced profiles that explain their capabilities.

Bonar recommends companies pay special attention to their narratives. “When completing a profile, do not neglect past performance and the optional fields like keywords because the lowest price is not always the determining factor anymore,” and “Technical ability and capability weigh heavily.” Keep in mind, after solicitations, if the government accepts your offer, that still doesn’t guarantee you a purchase. Companies must still market themselves to all prospectives.

Learning From Mistakes

According to Brian Bonar, it never hurts to ask questions. If your bid was not accepted, you can requrest a debriefing from the agency. Most of the times they will tell you where you went wrong, and that’s an important element to take advantage of.

Most importanly, Brian Bonar says, take a leap and find opportunities.