Most entrepreneurs start out as something else. Mike Baur is no different. He started out as a finance expert working at several of Switzerland’s most prestigious banks. His first big job in the industry was a young finance expert for Union Bank of Switzerland.
His talents were immediately apparent. The guy who hired Baur told him exactly how to succeed at the company and make his way to the top. He basically gave Baur step-by-step instructions on how to become one of the big boys that ran the company. Despite that huge advantage, Baur began to think that maybe banking wasn’t meant to be his life.
Nevertheless, he spent over 20 years in the industry. His journey toward entrepreneurship began with his first promotion. Within a few years, he’d earned several other promotions. It looked like he’d be a part of UBS forever, but it wasn’t so.
In 2008, Baur left all of his accomplishments behind and started working for another company; Clariden Leu. He hoped that Clariden would spark that passion he once had for the industry. His career with Clariden was very similar to his time with UBS; filled with success and compensation.
Yet, his passion for banking faded even more. After the banking recession of 2014, he lost all interest in the banking industry as a profession. He decided it was time to pursue his entrepreneurial passion. So, that same year, he joined Max Meister and co-founded Swiss Startup Factory.
To date, SSUF is the largest independently funded business incubator in Switzerland. For Baur, SSUF is more than just an incubator; it’s a way for him to offer his 20-plus-years of experience to young tech entrepreneurs. He takes great pride in the fact that he’s helping to build up Switzerland’s economy and business industry.
As SSUF grew, Baur couldn’t help but think about his 20 years in banking. While he didn’t want to condemn himself back into the life of a banker, the thought of wasting all that knowledge sickened him. So, he founded Think Reloaded, a financial advisory firm for the more affluent of individuals.
Of course, Think Reloaded collided with SSUF, giving birth to several collaborations, which sparked a partnership with BV4. Together, all three companies focused on increasing and improving ways for new entrepreneurs to get financing.