Jose Graca is a serial entrepreneur and an active technologist and expert in business tech and Fintech for 20 years. In this Dinis Guarda citiesabc openbusinesscouncil YouTube series, both host Dinis Guarda and guest Jose Graca go through the challenges of becoming an entrepreneur and to find the right opportunities to get off the ground.
1. An introduction from you - background, overview, education... Portugal, the Netherlands, and 10 countries...
2. Can you highlight some of your career highlights?
3. Your company / companies, organizations, and focus?
4. How do you see Society 5.0 - 4IR and all areas of digital transformation?
5. What are your views on our society, technology, and digital transformations?
6. What are your goals, and how do you see the future of work and the main trends in tech and society?
7. With Covid-19, in what ways do you envision to redesign our society with technology and social impact?
8. What are your visions for the present and future?
About Jose Graca’s background. Part of my life was decision making, and the other part was basically forced to it. I was born in Portugal, but my family and I left the country when I was 3 years old. We ended up in the Netherlands, and one thing I remember shocked me was the Netherlands' multiculturality. My passion was always Archaeology, and my first endeavor in the business environment was in the entertainment industry. But the money was in finance, so I became an accountant and hence a finance person. I was doing well there for a while, but I got tired of not having daily freedom and decided to quit my job and become a full-time entrepreneur. And I learned a hard truth: building a company is a tough thing to do but very satisfying in the end. I also shifted to the technology side and finance. After my company started to give back some yields, I became an angel investor, too, as I wanted to help people get their ideas to become real.
About entrepreneurship and newcomers. The big reason I became an entrepreneur was to gain my freedom. I understand that being an employee is much more comfortable. Entrepreneurship is a hard path. Founders and early business owners face many challenges, and capital is the first and most important one. Another challenge is a lack of experience. Newcomers face a whole world of new problems at their doorstep: accounting, human resources, team management, business operations, processes, etc. And to learn that it takes a lot of time and effort. That is why a new business and startup needs from 2 to 5 years on average to succeed. New entrepreneurs need to understand first how all these play out in a business to make sure they can survive and thrive.
Especially important is to know how professional investment works. Venture capital funds, angel investors, and other investments have precise requirements, and their conditions change significantly from one to another. Choosing the right investor with the right conditions is one of the first steps to success. And then, how important it is to manage that money to make sure that the hard-earned cash flow doesn’t go away.
Some of the challenges I have seen are funding: a brilliant idea, but reaching out to the right investors and raising funds seems impossible. Only 0,004% will ever get funded; Experience: You present the ideal mindset but lack the know-how to apply it. Have you ever considered that a business learning curve can take as long as 5 years?; Planning: Costs and time associated with setting up a business are always underestimated. You must conduct your research, financial modeling, and marketing plan before starting, but most start-ups don’t!
About Bizmoni. My team and I saw that many new business newcomers struggle with starting a business. So that is why we built Bizmoni is a social market economy where entrepreneurs and their ideas can find a genuine opportunity to connect and come to life. Bizmoni is an ecosystem designed to move entrepreneurs forward without the traditional economy's limits, replaced by the one that empowers them from the very start. With our platform, they can exchange goods and services globally on the go in a simple, non-bureaucratic approach, with unmatched safety. We have a beta launch date 6 to 12 months from now. Our software is running and operational. We plan to focus on entrepreneurs who most need help until they get through the most challenging part of becoming entrepreneurs. We are trying to have a very fair system, so we don’t ask anything in advance.
Challenges for the future. In the next 5 years, the millennial generation will take over the business world. And the way millennials experience and see how business is done is different from how the Baby Boomers do it. So we need to be prepared and understand that the world will radically change in the next 5 to 10 years. And the change not only comes from cultural and societal sources but also boosted by new technologies like AI, IoT, VR, remote working, and an entirely new array of tech solutions that will make business processes and operations run differently.
Jose Graca is a serial entrepreneur and an active technologist and expert in business tech and Fintech for 20 years. Jose Graca has built several companies from scratch with successful exits.
Jose Graca has been formerly active in Retail, Consumer Products, Pharma, Chemicals, Airline, Healthcare, and Apparel building brands. Jose is the author: Cook a Business, Fundraising for Dummies.
Jose Graca has grown between Portugal and the Netherlands, lived in 10 countries, visited +80 countries and +600 cities, 8 spoken and written languages, learning 2 more.
In the Startup community for +30 years holding various roles as Fundraiser, Serial Entrepreneur, Business Angel, Consultant, Mentor, and Venture Capitalist.
Profound knowledge of how multifaceted things work at the international level and environment.
Exported to over 15 countries for more than 20 years: Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia.
Ongoing consulting with venture capitals, agencies, and startups in technology, Fintech, finance, export, and international business development.
Jose Graca is an active brand and team builder developing solutions in finance, marketing, and technology to serve citizens, business owners, local governments, and startups.
Jose Graca's career started working for two listed companies in leading roles; one of them was a US multibillion-dollar company.
Bizmoni is a social market economy where pioneer businesses and ideas can find a genuine opportunity to connect and come to life. Bizmoni is an ecosystem designed to move businesses forward without the traditional economy's limits, replaced by the one that empowers them from the very start. Exchange goods and services globally on the go in a simple, non-bureaucratic approach, with unmatched safety.
Bizmoni focuses on entrepreneurs who most need help until they get through the most challenging part of becoming entrepreneurs. The team is trying to build a very fair system; that is why they don’t ask anything in advance.
Bizmoni video pitch: