The Start Then Restartup

Everyone seems to have an idea for “The Next Big Thing”. Deciding to act on that idea seems like the hardest thing for most of those same people. Like many others I’ve had plenty of ideas that could potentially become successful. Recently I’ve decided to act upon those ideas and create a startup… and then a restartup.

My Quick Fail

It didn’t take long before I was quickly jumping into one of my first ideas, excited and blinded by the prospect of success. A buddy and I started putting the details together for our idea of opening a local micro brew store and sampling bar.

We started putting together a rough business plan, a brand, and even found two locations perfect for the audience we were after. I then proceeded to purchase an LLC and setup a business checking account while my partner was in charge of applying for our alcohol license. Then things started to go down hill…

After a week without hearing from my partner I became concerned and finally was able to get in touch. The concerns were confirmed and my partner informed me that he thought the risks were too much for him and decided to bail. I was upset but held back my frustration.

It wasn’t the loss of around $450 or the three weeks of hard work, but the disappointing fact that after three weeks I had already failed. I took the next week off from the idea to gather my thoughts and came to the conclusion that I would move on. The next idea was already being fostered and a fresh sense of excitement had been restored.

Fustrated with Banking

While my previous partner and I are were setting up our business we found it difficult to simply open up a business checking account. When looking for a business checking account we wanted something with great mobile/web applications and little or no fees. The problem was that the big national banks had so-so applications but came with minimal balance and transaction fees. The smaller local banks removed these fees but had terrible applications.

It was a week after doing this research that Chris Schmitz was tweeting the same questions I had. We discussed and both yearned for a solution much like Simple, an online checking account, but one that was geared toward small businesses and startups.

Weekend of Startups

Coincidentally, that next weekend Chris and I happened to both be at Startup Weekend in Milwaukee. We got together and listened to all the pitches but couldn’t get the idea of an online business checking account out of our heads. After the pitches wrapped up we looked at each other and almost in unison said “Lets build a bank!” Together with two other friends we created the basic idea for Oink.

Downs and Ups

As we continue to work on Oink, now six months later, we have received our fair share of high and low points. The highs include considerable interest from the startup community, a few hundred subscribers interested in beta testing and contact with a handful of potential business partners and investors.

Our biggest hurdle to date is the need for a banking partner coupled with the initial investment to help us get this idea off the launch pad. Regardless, we are working hard toward finding our answers through persistence, networking and constant experimenting.

Value in Executing

The failure of my first endeavor has left me hungry and determined more than ever to bring success. I know in the back of my head that there is a chance that this can end much in the same way as my prior startup.

In the next month or two our answers of whether or not we can make this work will be revealed. In the process I have been able to improve my network, skills and appreciation for the work I do. Knowing that I didn’t give up or take the easy road will give me the drive to continue on with Oink or the next idea.

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.
Thomas A. Edison

The quote from Edison can be read in two ways. As motivation to continue iterating on an idea, or to continue working on ideas after one may fail. The rewards of creating a successful startup are immeasurable, the rewards of failing a hard fought idea aren’t too far off.

Wrap It Up!

I urge you to continue to chase your ideas and dreams with relentless pursuit. No matter the outcome the benefit to gain is tremendous and almost always opens up opportunities in the future.

Written by Andrew Verboncouer

Entrepreneur, Co-Founder/Product Designer at Headway, Cultivating Startups with Digital Fertilizer.

One Response to “The Start Then Restartup”

  1. matthewmagellan

    For the record, I would totally go to a microbrew tasting bar!

    Great post!


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