On Thursday the the 29th of August, Berlin Lean Startup organized the 22nd Lean StartUp Meetup in Berlin. I had the pleasure again to attend the meeting.

Lesson learned: Fail fast

Dieter Holger was presenting the meeting. The meeting had had only one guest speaker: Tiago Pita is the CPO of T Dispatch (Taxi Dispatch & Fleet Management, in the cloud). Tiago gave a presentation about “Changing the Transport Industry” and how they applied the lean startup methodology along the way.

Tiago was extremely open about his startup. The pivoted from some kind of my taxi concept to cloud based software for fleet management. Fleet management software is expensive and not available for small fleets. The fleet management is focused on taxi-, limo companies and corporate fleets. Companies pay a fix amount per driver so it is very interesting for smaller companies. But the very good thing in the concept was that every company could have his own website (available in opensource) or own app to order and manage. For example in New York there is a taxi company using T Dispatch who is targeting the gays that need a taxi with a customized app.

T Dispatch made a kick start after launching their cloud model. There was clearly a problem to solve in this market and without to much efforts they got many subscriptions (so new clients) per month, although the software was far from perfect (lean!!). A real problem/solution fit, on the way to product market fit. For investors this was an interesting fact to participate so that is what happened. But then the trouble started. The investors wanted to scale the business the company was hiring a sales team (before the developers were selling via Internet). What happened exactly we don’t know in detail but on the end of the story the company was split in a developer team and sales team who did not want to communicate with each other. The sales were not as predicted and the investment was gone. The sellers have been fired and the development team (party) exchanged. Back to business which seems to work….

Some important learning from working with investors for T Dispatch were:

  • Fail fast
  • Do not scale
  • Sell
  • Do not work with an investor

For me the most interesting learning of the presentation is fail fast. I should translate it into validate fast or maybe validate lean. It is very important to implement this in your startup.

And as always there was a little time for the Flea market on the end of the meeting. This time there were many people looking for developers, co-founders or announcing another meetup.

Most interesting is that You Is Now announced their Accelerator program in which startups can also participate with idea’s that not have anything to do with real estate.

As last time, Sergey Soft from cleanberlin.org was present in the Flea market. Sergey announced that Clean Berlin is growing. As Sergey is selling, he needs a developer, a product manager to manage his developer and an assistant to assist the product manager. A very funny way to announce that you need people and get the attention on the flea market.

All together it was great evening and I would like to thank Dieter and the crew of YouIsNow for the organisation.

If you would like to leave some feedback or you think my interpretation of your startup is not correct, feel free to add it to add a comment or contact me via the contact form.

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