Ine Alexakis interviewed by Kostapanos Miliaresis
- What encouraged you to work on entrepreneurship in a young age? Was it an organization, a person, an event?Basically, it was the startups’ founder proposal in addition to the fact that I had chosen at that point to work more firmly on my second degree to enrich my knowledge and experiences. Also, the fact that I had never again heard of startups made it sound so fascinating. Even now, it still sounds cool to people outside of this “ecosystem”.
- What did the University contribute to your entrepreneurship route, until this moment?
In the University I gained the first necessary skills to get myself introduced to the mentality of the modus operandi of business and then of course marketing. Through case studies, showed by people from the field, my perceptual capacity quickly triggered as far as it concerns the professional track. It didn’t make an entrepreneur out of me, but I didn’t expect the University to do so in the first place. I just think that maybe there should be a different educational structure from primary school, so the perception of the individual and his way of thinking (aka business) is shaped differently.
- Incubators and seed finance: What is your experience and opinion as far as it concerns your project and Greece in general?
Seed finance… better get an answer from someone that knows much more than me. In several startup cases though in Greece, I consider financing as a connection between networking and replaying ideas from abroad for a few months, until the obvious is proved.
Incubators are necessary for startups whose members’ first or second degree aren’t relevant. Otherwise I think it’s a waste of time and that its better to get someone in acceleration.
- What Innovative training methods have you seen? How much did they help and which ones are worth mentioning?
I found it innovative because of the way Mr. Economides conducted the entire process. Peter The Fox Economides @Orange Grove, behind closed doors, a session where we split into random groups and selected by voting, one of our startups, as a case study. We had to re-brand it, taking advantage of the rapporteur’s experience and knowledge.
- What initiatives have you seen or participated in that promote start-up communities? What’s your personal contribution to this?
The Open Coffee, IDCG and the events organized by incubators. I didn’t participate in promoting anything of the above, but I attended the first and participated in the second (in many contests).
- Is there a start-up network in Greece? How active is it? Is there a true substance? What’s your personal contribution to it?
Not that I really know. I just think there’s a lot of image-making and little appetite for community. I think we are very far from the deep sense of community, especially with the etymological meaning.
- If someone asked you a question about fundraising, what would it be and how would you answer?
In Greece: Ask me in 5 years.
Abroad: Let’s do this. Let’s be real. In Greece, education is still needed in this target group. I consider the ground barren for fundraising in Greece, because the media won’t promote it and people in Greece will be motivated minimally. In other words, such an institution in a small country like ours can’t function smoothly and successfully, but it should be scaled and communicated properly and coordinated.
- Co-working spaces: opinion/ personal partnership, considering your route so far.
Interesting. Overall positive experience in that it offers a well-rounded perspective of what entrepreneurship and the business status quo in Greece is!
- What’s your number one tool, if you had to pick, that made you and your project what you are today?Is hard work a tool?
If not, then “A FEW GOOD MEN” you meet along the way and genuinely eagerly help you take your project off the ground, and in their doing so you grow as a person.
- What’s the biggest need for a young entrepreneur at this time?
Το have the courage and madness to escape the fear and pessimism that if he fails, he might lose everything.