Andreas has been through the whole life cycle of biotech startups, and is now coming out of the other side. Here’s our conversation on venture, purpose and the industry-academia divide.
It’s been a year since then and now that I finally sit down to write This, the real post mortem, the autopsy for my dead child, there’s finally a small sense of peace.
It’s over, isn’t it?
Who knew a jingle played from a van would be the best way to let people know a GMO mosquito would be released in their area so that they’d go “cool, okay”?
Yes, Oxitec did that.
But how, exactly?
Our four months at Rebel Bio are up. And being a Rebel, I learnt, is not about being a reckless contrarian.
How do you know when you’ve gone too far and you should jump ship before you find yourself so way under not even the fish will listen?
How can you tell when it’s time to stop believing your own bullshit?
I love seeing those post and pictures that have “faith in humanity restored” as a tagline. People paying it forward with coffee and food, helping animals cross streets, and just doing random acts of kindness all around.
I was lucky enough to be the receptor of one of the best random acts of kindness ever. And it happened in the lovely country I currently reside in, because life is weird that way: Ireland.
Entrepreneurship feels like standing on a tight rope and being handed a violin, then a flute, then a bass, and suddenly either a balalaika or a chainsaw or both at the same time. And doing as entrepreneurs do: balancing everything and getting on with it.
If you ask any serious investor what’s the most important thing a startup can do they’re likely to mention three things: sell, sell and sell. Us biotech founders though, after receiving the selling mantra, generally get an extra phrase: good luck.
I thought walking the walk was the hardest thing about being an entrepreneur, but not for this. Once everything around you goes down, and after you’ve dropped off the radar to lick your wounds and gather enough strength to come back, it’s time to talk the talk.
Welcome to the talk of shame.
An accelerator is about finding if your idea has wings, and if it can take off. So if it crashes and burns right away that’s good – you won’t be working 2 or 3 years on something that’s never going to work
“You can program computers with code and bacteria with genes.” Bill reminded us that day. “You can also program humans with words.”
There’s a gigantic amount of people who can give you better advice than me in pitching. So I decided to compile a list of weird advice instead.