Every entrepreneur’s story starts with a day-in and day-out job. For Mike Baur, his job was more of a career. He actually loved his first job and stayed with the industry for 20 years. Since he was a young man, growing up in Freiburg, Switzerland, he’s loved finance.
Even before earning his business degrees, he joined the finance industry. His first job was at Union Bank of Switzerland. The guy hiring Baur immediately realized he was special. He gave Baur a step by step guide to how to succeed at the company. He even listed the promotions he expected Baur to achieve before retirement.
His hiring manager was almost right. Baur did receive numerous promotions, but working at UBS wasn’t meant to be his final venture. In 2008, he moved to Zurich to work at Clariden Leu. He immediately held high-ranking positions at the company, but he still wasn’t as happy as he wanted to be.
In 2014, left Clariden Leu and joined Max Meister and launched Swiss Startup Factory. This incubator program helps young tech entrepreneurs get their businesses up and running. SSUF offers mentoring, training services, and for some, free office space and financial aid.
Since co-founding SSUF, Baur’s been much happier. He loves going to work and interacting with all the aspiring entrepreneurs. He even participated in the START Summiteer, which is a pitching contest for up and coming businesses. He served as one of the jurors with their 2014 contest.
As his new business began to grow, he couldn’t let go of his 20-year finance career. He founded Think Reloaded as a way to bridge his two loves. It didn’t take long before Think Reloaded began working with SSUF. Their partnership eventually attracted BV4. Now, Baur and Meister are integral members of the BV4 team.
Now that Swiss Startup Factory is thriving, there’s a lot to admire. SSUF is the largest independent incubator program in the country. That freedom allows them to explore every opportunity with no fear of interference of conflicts of interest. Having co-founders who financially support the company allows the brand to do more.
Mike Baur left behind a lucrative office job to be an entrepreneur. His career in banking was predicted long ago, yet, he left to pursue happiness. That’s a lesson that every entrepreneur should learn about.