Thanks for listening to one of our most popular episodes, click the Play button! In this episode, hear how an Iranian-born Swede, now a Singaporean PR, achieved the near-impossible by raising $55 million dollars for his startup that aims to make buildings more energy-efficient, using technology to save clients money […]
Hey, my name’s Chris and I’m a host that comes from a startup background. I’ve seen it all (from pitches so bad the whole room died of laughter, to experiencing my own failed startups and some success with Groupon Singapore which has allowed me to reach a financial goal) – and it’s not as smooth as the ‘overnight success story’. In fact, starting a company is more about failure than it is about success.
Why the name, “Ramen To Riches”? Apart from being an Asian play on the phrase ‘rags to riches’- in startup folklore, there exists a threshold when a startup becomes ‘ramen profitable’. First coined by Paul Graham (Y-Combinator) in one of his well-known essays, it means that you are profitable, but make only enough to afford instant ramen and cover the basic living expenses of the founders. It’s a good sign, but it doesn’t mean your idea has gone gang-busters yet. And that’s the point, your journey will be marked not by the riches at the end of it, but by the challenges- and there’s many of them throughout- and how you cope and deal with them. And when you get there, you’ll look back and reminisce over the times when all you could afford was instant ramen in simpler times.
And why do this? On a personal level, being able to tolerate the sound of your own voice in a video or podcast is probably the highest form of self-acceptance. I am also an entrepreneur and know exactly how it feels to be guide-less and isolated. I’ve met a lot of kind people on my travels who were willing to help me and this is my way of paying it forward.
The first season ended after a year, and the cherry on top was being invited to host my first TV show for Channel NewsAsia. We’re now into Season 2 and while COVID-19 has unfortunately disrupted a lot of the recording process, we’ve received messages of hope and useful feedback. Thank you and take care.