As we come to the end of the year, a lot of people will be reflecting on time gone by, the highs, the lows and maybe think about what can be done to start the year positively. With just under three weeks remaining I thought i’d take the time to reflect on some of the professional highs before I reflect on some of those professional lows – we all have them right :).
The year of the verbal let’s go!
2023 has not been a great year for early stage capital investment. It dried up amongst economic uncertainty, higher than recent interest rates and a desire to pause to “see what happens”. Why is this in my highs? This market demonstrated our (as in MOHARA) resilience and ability to pull together and be agile. We opened up new go to market strategies, developed new partnerships and really dug in to fight through things. When the market is tough, that is when you work hard, keep going and be standing when things improve. I am proud of the way we did that.
Bear With Me…
I started a podcast with my good friend and often business collaborator Doug Haines. We called this podcast Bear With Me after the many times I have used the phrase to explain where I believe MOHARA should be moving next when chatting with my co-founder Ben Blomerley. This Podcast has given Doug and I the outlet to chat about business, laugh, research and lay the foundations of something we believe will become something. We have no followers yet, but it is a wonderful beginning.
Travel – cliche!
I travelled to see our South African team for the first time in 3 years (partly due to Covid partly due to my responsibilities elsewhere). This trip was like a shot in the arm (see point 1) just as we were entering Autumn. It reminded me how important it is to work side by side with your colleagues and be sure to do it often. I also travelled to spend time with Jackie LaRocca, our North America Partner, in Toronto. Jackie and I get on so well and this time together laid further foundation for that working relationship and our plans for North America in 2024.
When strategies work
We launched MOHARA Zero to One this year after being in the making for over two years and it has proven a great success with the market in its fledging year. Launching a new service can be risky. We got this one right.
The Startup Studio community
MOHARA has been a Startup Studio since 2015 and we have invested in 33 businesses – so we have been around the block, but there has never really been a community around our “industry”. Until now. Big shout out to all of the people involved in generating the ground swell on LinkedIN this year (Matt Burris at the beginning and Max Pog towards the end). There is a real togetherness amongst us builders. I am delighted that the way we all do things is being recognised as a truly viable and exciting way to build businesses.
Making artwork with AI
Who doesn’t love a big bird sitting on a table in Bavaria drinking a beer and chowing down on a giant Bratwurst? I know I do.
As ever I am always keen to hear peoples highs and lows and uncover what we are all going through as we grow our businesses and trundle through life.
Now onto the lows… pass me the Port.