Why I believe in startup culture and why it’s under threat.
Startups change the world! It’s impossible to over-estimate the impact that technology startups have on our lives. We are on the cusp of a period where exponiential technologies will combine to solve some of the world’s really pressing problems. Technology is simply the enabler and I believe that it is startup culture that really moves mountains. People such such as Elon Musk are undaughted by technology challenges. They simply spot an opportunity to make things better and go for it. This is what startup culture is all about. Unfortunately, this culture is often misunderstood and I would argue is under threat on both sides of the Atlantic.
Startups are finely tuned machines that are driven by a passion to succeed. Founders risk everything to follow their dreams but can easily be thrown off track if the eco-system is unsupportive. They rely on access to the best minds, freely available capital, support from experienced mentors and a strong user base.
Both Silicon Valley and London both face challenges in accessing the talent needed to build great startups. Opposition to immigration sits at the core of the problem. Both Brexit and Trump are a misguided reaction to the success of startup culture and it’s ability to bring change. In middle England and the mid-west there is little appetite for this pace of change and startup founders are often seen as spoilt brats with little entitlement to their success.
The UK Government, through Brexit, seeks to restrict immigration with the argument that we can create our own talent. They talk about introducing processes for admitting highly skilled people. However, this simply won’t work with startups. Successful founders often have no formal qualifications. Ten of the most successful leaders in world all dropped out of college. Would we have blocked their admittance to the UK on the basis they were under qualified? Entrepreneurs are risk takers who often leave their home country to set up business where they see an opportunity to build something of value. The London startup scene is packed with these inspiring young leaders who represent the future engine of growth for the UK economy. If we pull the rug from under them it will be to the disadvantage of all.
Blog by Paul Dowling — Co-Founder of Dreamstake the world’s first tech accelerator platform matching over 16,000 founders with the most appropriate investors using a unique startup rating system. This allows entrepreneurs and investors to monitor startup progress and inject capital and support when most needed. Startup founders create profiles on the platform and get curated introductions to investors. We are constantly looking for great early stage tech startups. Investors please contact firstname.lastname@example.org