Last night we visited Startup Sauna, a co-working space also on the campus of Aalto University where startups are not just fostered, they are launched into space!

Startup Sauna

Startup Sauna

We got to mingle with some Sauna Alumni while munching on the favorite meal of geeks – pizza and beer. It was a great opportunity to learn what it really takes to launch a real company.

One of the most interesting guys I met was Mikelis Studers from Catch Box. It is a throw able microphone for group events. Its shaped like a cube, can be branded, and makes presentations a lot more fun because people can literally toss the mic. Check out their site at www.thecatchbox.com Right now they are in the pre-development phase, but hope to have product on the shelves in a couple months.

Pizza, beer, business, geeks

Pizza, beer, business, geeks

So today I really started diving into the nuts and bolts of my business plan. I figured out the top 30 markets that I want to get into and detailed the cost to build apps in those markets. On average I’m looking at $1,300 per market in expenses.

I then finalized my pricing model. An episode will contain at least 6 levels. The app will be free to download and will contain 2 of the levels. Each additional 2 levels will cost the user $5, which they can purchase inside the app itself.

So in each market I need at least 260 users to download at least 2 additional levels to break even. My goal, however, is for 200 people per million in a market to download the app. For 30% of those to download 2 extra levels and another 30% to download 2 extra levels.

So in Boston I’d expect 800 downloads and an income of $3,600. This is over a one year period.

The big question now is – how do I get into those 30 markets? And how do I get into them before someone else copies the idea and does it faster. The common approach in the startup community is to look for an “Angel Investor”. Someone with so much money they actually enjoy risking it. Well maybe that isn’t totally true. But they do invest in newer and thus riskier businesses. I’m not so sure about it though. It strike two wrong nerves with me. #1 – I don’t do partnerships. Like my buddy Dave Ramsey says – “The only ship that doesn’t sail is a partnership“. And #2 it seems too much like a loan, which I also don’t do. I’ve been told that it isn’t a loan. It is someone looking to help me and make money from it. But I still feel like I’d be risking their money.

So that was the reason for tonight’s walk. To try to think it through. A night time stroll towards the docks turned into an idea for level 4 in Helsinki. I found some more really cool things. Like Hotel Hanko!

Hotel Hanko!

Hotel Hanko!

And this place got a giggle out of me. And then I laughed because I giggled all by myself. And then I snorted because I laughed out loud by myself. It could of gotten a lot worse if someone wasn’t walking directly toward me.

Cafe... Hahaha.. Fanny

Cafe… Hahaha.. Fanny

But I did find a great looking tower lit up. It was on top of a hill that looks out over the harbor. I’ll be back in the day time to get a picture in that direction.

Cool tower

Cool tower

 

Then I got lost. I thought I was going east, but apparently I was going south. I was walking through the expensive district. I could tell it was the expensive district because grown women were walking dogs with sweaters on that could fit in a purse. You know the kind. And because people were (#1) jogging at night and (#2) wearing clothes they bought just for jogging.

I also was passing shops that looked like they were more like a piece of art rather than an actual place of commerce. Like this sweet shop where every item looked like it was individually created for a specific person.

Expensive treats

Expensive treats

In the end I just came back to the hotel, turned on Mythbusters, and decided to give my brain a rest until tomorrow.

Tomorrow we have an open house where lots of people will be visiting and we’ll be pitching for a number of people.

So chow for now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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