Competition is not a bad thing

Learn why it’s not necessarily a bad thing to launch your business in a market that already contains established brands and businesses. We sat down with multi time investor Casper Dreymann and had a talk about his experience as both investor and mentor for new companies.

What makes an investor decide to invest in a new company, when the competition in the market is fierce? And why is competition not necessarily a bad thing, if you want your business to succeed? Our talk with the multi time investor Casper Dreymann, will hopefully teach you a thing or two about gaining and maintaining your competitive edge.

“If you as a new company want to enter an already established market, it’s very important that you dig in and really get to know your market and your competitors.”

Why mentoring makes a difference

Casper Dreymann is not solely an investor. In his own eyes Casper is as much, if not more of a mentor for a series of start-ups and entrepreneurs. And he is not only mentoring the companies he has invested in. To him it’s almost a calling to help drive and inspire new companies to find their competitive edge, cultivate it and over time become successful companies. 

That’s why you will not find Casper sitting comfortably behind his desk waiting for the companies he has invested in to make a profit. Whenever Casper finds a business that he feels compelled to invest in, he is 100% committed. He often helps the entrepreneurs set up a professional sales force, outline a sales strategy and roll it out.

The reason Casper is so focused on sales is not really a surprise, since he runs a telemarketing company, which originally was his own business idea. He himself had the benefit of a mentor, and he learned from the very beginning, why competition is not a bad thing.

“If you as a new company want to enter an already established market, it’s very important that you dig in and really get to know your market and your competitors. The better you know your market, the better chance you have of finding a position of where your business can make a difference. And you need to be able to show me, that you have what it takes to take the position and build on it. 

The businesses I decide to invest in or mentor might not already hold this position, but if I believe in the business idea I will gladly invest time and money in helping them reach that goal. That’s the whole idea of being a mentor or an investor; to make a difference and help them reach their goals.”

First mover vs established market

Being a first mover as a new company might sound attractive, but according to Casper Dreymann it’s hard work. Often much harder than entering an already established market. Not because you need to identify your market and target group, but you need a lot of resources to introduce and promote your new “never seen before” product or service and, then just as many resources to establish your market. 

Of course, this challenge would be easily overcome if you already have all the funding you need and all the time in the world, but that is rarely the case. In fact, the odds and challenges for many new businesses are extremely harsh, especially, if you want to attract an investor. As Casper explains:

“In my book, it should make no difference whether you are a first mover business or part of an already established market. The demands are the same. You need to show people like me a proof of concept within the first 6 months. If within the first year you succeed in meeting expectations, then we’re good to go. 

But, if you still haven’t proven your business worth, you will most likely not succeed, in which case it will be extremely hard to find an investor. Of course, if you have a mentor, then you might get a second chance to get your business going. But, as a rule, you need to proof your worth as a business idea within the first year.”

Casper is involved in regional business angel organisation, and he and his fellow business angels are regular introduced to aspiring start-ups and new businesses, all of which come with high hopes and quite often unrealistic dreams of making it big. It’s fair to say that far from everyone makes it through the eye of the needle as these events, but Casper still encourages those who try and fail to get back on the horse and make a second and a third try.

“There’s a great need in Scandinavia for entrepreneurs, for people who dare dream and will fight to make their dream come alive. And I’m happy to be able to help some of them join the competition and succeed.”

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