Funding business opportunities – Entrepreneurs advise

A job for a paycheck is boredom and confinement; entrepreneurship is freedom. – Rob Johnson, a professor at London Business School and IESE Business School

Entrepreneurship, aside from freedom, brings various challenges, one of the more demanding being the financing of a business idea. To make this journey easier for you, below, we provide an overview of funding sources and the specifics of each, as outlined by the successful Croatian entrepreneur and owner of Alcina d.o.o., Saša Ivan Vrdoljak, during the BizHack Startup Caffe webinar titled “Funding Business Opportunities.”


Sources of funding for business ideas


The choice of funding sources depends on the company’s development stage, the riskiness of the investment, the duration of investment during the period the company generates losses, and the profitability margin expected by the investor.


Funding sources commonly include own funds, support from the European Union / Republic of Croatia, “3F” (Friends & Family & Fools), crowdfunding, business angels, venture capital funds, mezzanine financing, commercial loans, and initial public offerings (IPO).


At the beginning of the business journey, funding for business opportunities usually comes from own funds, EU support and projects, and crowdfunding. After passing through these funding phases, entrepreneurs often opt for financing through business angels and venture capital funds.


European Union / Republic of Croatia projects


Vlatka Petrović, Head of the Office for Technology Transfer at the Center for Research, Development, and Technology Transfer, presented the European Union’s EIT KICs program. The program has funds for investing in projects in the fields of health, production, and climate change.


One of the beneficiaries of EU program financing was Marin Bek, co-founder and director of Ascalie. Marin mentions that the funding, in terms of the amount itself, was not crucial for the development of the business, but the networking and connections he gained were invaluable.




Crowdfunding, or popularly known as crowdfunding, represents funding from a multitude of people through various platforms, with Kickstarter and Indiegogo being the most well-known.


Domagoj Boljar, co-founder of the Miret brand, which produces environmentally sustainable sneakers, used crowdfunding campaigns, among other methods, on his business journey and is extremely satisfied. For Domagoj, besides the funding itself, the importance of the crowdfunding campaign manifested in positive statistics of interest in his product, which he then used for further achieving his goals.


Mistakes in seeking funding from the VC fund perspective


Vedran Blagus, Investment Manager at South Central Ventures, a regional VC fund, emphasizes the importance of preparation for seeking funding. Vedran points out that many startup companies do not even explore whether they are a good fit for the fund from which they seek financing. Also, 80% of startups do not study what the fund invests in or how much they invest. The approximate ratio of companies seeking funding to those who ultimately receive it is 1:100. In other words, only 1% of companies will receive financing.


Mirna Marović, Director of VentureXchange d.o.o., also notices a lack of originality in projects, which are often mere replicas of something already seen, without potential in the ideas.


Video recording from the event


Do you want to know why some entrepreneurs would never invest their own money in business development again? Or how to navigate the valley of death if you are a startup company? We share answers to these questions and more in the recording from the 4th Online BizHack Startup Caffe event “Funding Business Opportunities,” held on November 4, 2020, in a live broadcast.


In the next, 5th Online BizHack Startup Caffe webinar “Sustainable Development and Business Scaling,” we will talk about achieving long-term financial sustainability and growth. The event takes place on November 19, 2020, at 5 p.m.


Other BizHack Startup Caffe events

bizhack startup caffe live webinar

This was the fourth in a series of five BizHack Startup Caffe events. Learn more about other events HERE.

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