It seems like happiness has a different meaning these days. People prefer wealth and fame over being happy. That puts a lot of people in situations they don’t actually want to be in, but they stay because the money’s good or because everyone looks up to them.
Mike Baur used to be one of those people. Like everyone else, at a young age, he only wanted a successful career that made him feel like a hero. Working at a Union Bank Switzerland gave him that feeling. On his first day, a hiring managing listed all the promotions he believed that Baur would achieve throughout his career with UBS.
Despite all the success he achieved at UBS, he left the company in 2008. He wanted a change, in hopes of rekindling his passion for banking. He started working in Clariden Leu’s Zurich office, but it didn’t help the way he hoped.
He only lasted six years at Clariden. Fed up with all the red tape that bankers deal with, he explored more entrepreneurial options. In 2014, he co-founded Swiss Startup Factory. SSUF is an incubator program firm that helps tech entrepreneurs get their enterprises running. SSUF offers mentoring and training; and for some, rent-free offices and financial aid.
The same year he co-founded SSUF, he was a juror at START Summiteer, which is a pitch contest for up and coming enterprises. It’s also a great to get out and network with other aspiring companies. That’s one of the reasons that SSUF encourages its startups to enter the contest.
Despite finding happiness as an entrepreneur, Baur worked in banking for 20 years. He had a lot of hard habits to break. To satisfy his banking needs, he founded Think Reloaded, a financial advice firm for wealthy individuals and companies.
Swiss Startup Factory is more than Mike Baur’s first entrepreneurial venture. It was one of the first independently funded incubators in the country. Its co-founders are fully invested in every startup they work with; sometimes, even financial invested. Having such committed co-founders allows the company to do things that dependent incubators can’t do.
The impression that Baur’s making on all the young entrepreneurs he meets is a lasting impression. Meeting Mike Baur, they see a man who chose his passion over a lifelong lucrative career as a renowned banker.