Last week, we reported on the acquisition of Czech-Slovak startup M.dot by web-hosting and domain registration platform GoDaddy. In an interview for the Slovak newspaper sme.sk, 24-year-old M.dot co-founderDominik Balogh explains his company’s motivations to look for investors, and eventually a market, outside of Europe. In the following, you can read the excerpt that we have selected from the Q&A.
Reasons for leaving Slovakia
“We want to learn to play in the first league of business software, not in the second or third. We would consider it a real success if it’s asserted among the best in the world… Another reason is the kind of available resources: the expertise in leadership, business, and legal issues as well as the network of investors. All of this was created in Silicon Valley in the past decade. In Slovakia, an entrepreneur with global ambitions cannot have this, because the software and technology business is not developed in such a large scale.”
The business environment
“It didn’t fit me at all,” Balogh told sme.sk. “The trade law and the legal form of business in the country are not fit for a rapidly growing software business environment. For entrepreneurs with global ambitions, it is – from a legal point of view – better to incorporate in the U.S. or in another country. The flexibility of the U.S. law allows the company to grow faster and find investment capital relatively easy.”
The role of the government
“The U.S. has shown that the less the government interferes in the startup scene, the better. The economy can handle itself. The government should not worry about the startups and their environment in general. In the past, the state has almost certainly handled finances worse than private investors… Direct support for entrepreneurs will be possible when the state updates the education system to encourage young people to start their own businesses.”
Read more about the Slovak government’s role in financing startups here.
Balogh’s personal motivation
“The idea is of no value. We all have ideas, and a lot of them. The question is who has the will, stamina and willingness to take risks to materialize their ideas, but also to fail and start over. The success is preceded by failures and 18-hour days of hard work. I am 24 years old, and in the last seven years of work and education, I have had one day off. Few people are able to give up their comfort. My personal recommendation is to not give up, and to rely on your own education rather than the one you get at school. At 18 or 20, you have almost nothing to lose, so this is the best time to start a business. And if you don’t like it in Slovakia, you can always pack your bags and leave.”