'Startup Lounge with Chris Rolls' is not your average startup event. For one thing, host Chris Rolls has put his money where his mouth is when it comes to founding a startup or two. He's done the hard yards, exited more than once and is now founder of an investment fund himself - it's fair to say he knows what he's talking about.
Chris' guests have been around the block too. This month we learned about Dr James Fielding's rollercoaster ride to get his life-changing Audeara headphones manufactured off-shore and delivered on-time. Or not.
James says of his ground-breaking headphones:
"Yeah the headphones are pretty cool... but that expression and personalisation is what we’re really about".
You can tell by his title that James wasn't always a startup. He is also a medical doctor and a drummer and still gigs to bring in some extra bacon from time to time - a fact that wasn't lost on our intrepid host as a way to fund a few starving startups. A fact not lost on our host - more on this later.
Chris also delved into retail multi-channel sales mogul Ryan Murtagh of Neto's past and discovered that he started his career by setting up his school tuck shop and flogging it back to the school for a profit once he left school. Recognising a fellow numbers-man Chris pushed Ryan to reveal a few more little stats like this gem: Neto has grown by 70% in the last 12 months and now employs 120 people. Nice one.
In the interest of supporting boot-strapping startups Chris introduced a new segment: Starving Startups pitching two founders from the trenches in a drum-off against seasoned founder, and more importantly drummer, James.
Founder Shannon Craddock of property startup Immo walked away a happy man with a basket full of 3 Minute Noodles and a wad of cash after what may or may not have been a biased judgement call by our panel. Watch this space for our followup video where you can judge for yourself whether James was robbed.