According to research London has become home to 15,700 new businesses in just one year. The biggest Tech apps, such as “Mind Candy” and “Hailo”, came from humble beginnings by amateur tech entrepreneurs but became huge success stories, all thanks to the ease of setting up a tech business and a flurry of new ideas.
But having an idea is one thing. Getting it off the ground is another. London is now a global hub for tech start-ups (alongside Berlin, New York, Tel Aviv – and of course Silicon Valley) with a larger and better connected ecosystem, providing new start-ups with easier access to talent, investors, guidance and inspiration.
In the near future, smartphones, tablets and wearable technologies (such as Google Glass, smart watches etc.) will become mainstream enabling everyone to interact anytime, anywhere with almost anything, because an increasing number of physical objects will become internet enabled.
Things to think about before setting up a Tech business:-
- You need to come up with a tech solution that will solve problems for a significant sector of consumers and it needs to be user friendly
- Once you have developed a simple version of your program you’ll need to test it in real conditions
- How and where will you demonstrate your product to help create demand? Be prepared to adapt your product based on the feedback you get
- You’ll need a long-term business plan to show how your product will impact the market.
- How will you arrange funding according to the potential of growth of your Tech Services?
- Can you get a team together with the right mix of technical, product design, sales, marketing and commercial skills? Some things can be outsourced but there should ideally be in-house competency across most of these areas from early on
Challenges you face when launching a tech start-up:-
The first challenge is building something from nothing – doing anything for the first time can be hard.
As a start-up you have to launch a new service, ship your first version of the product, employ your first member of staff, find your first user and convince someone or some business to be the first to spend money with you.
The second challenge is raising the money you’ll need before you start to make revenue.
If your product is already in the market it makes it easier for investors to analyze how their money will affect the performance of your business – and ultimately their return on investment.
If you don’t have this you’ll need to find investors who strongly believe in both your vision and the capabilities of the founding team. You also need to put in even more work demonstrating demand for your service, a comprehensive business plan and a big enough potential up-side to counteract the unknowns inherent to pre-product angel investing.
Finally, managing your own psychology can be a deal-breaker. Lots of entrepreneurs talk about the personal psychological challenges of launching a start-up.
Top tips for setting up your own tech start-up:-
- Find one or two co-founders to build a team with balanced skills, including technology, sales and marketing and product design.
- Focus on a significant customer problem and really investigate whether it is a painful problem for enough people before you invest heavily in any solution.
- Build a network of mentors who buy into your vision and want to support you.
- Get into Tech City. There are loads of shared work-spaces, free educational events and focused networking opportunities for tech start-ups.
- Get out of the building! Build and change both your product and your plans based on continued interactions with real potential customers.
- Don’t give up.