Mike Baur: From Banker to Entrepreneur

Most entrepreneurs have uplifting stories. Mike Baur is no different. What makes his different is his story. His path to entrepreneurial success began in a way that no one else’s story could. His childhood and college days are similar to most others, but his career sets him apart.

In 1991, he got his first bank job, working at a Union Bank of Switzerland. His natural talent for banking and finance was apparent to everyone. Even the hiring manager bringing him into the company predicted exactly how well Baur would excel at UBS. He even listed every promotion he believed Baur would achieve before retirement.

Before he turned 30, Baur reached a high-level advisory position. He dealt with some of the richest investors in the country. He career was skyrocketing, yet, he wanted to leave. In 2008, moved to another bank, Clariden Leu, where he stayed for another six years.

Eventually, the burden of responsibility wore him down further. In 2014, he left Clariden in favor of an entrepreneurial venture. He partnered with Max Meister and co-founded Swiss Startup Factory, an incubator program that offers numerous services – including mentoring and training – to young tech entrepreneurs.

The most promising startups get extra services like rent-free offices and financial aid. They also encourage these startups to compete in pitching contests. Baur’s first year as an entrepreneur, he participated in START Summiteer, a pitching contest held on a college campus. He served as a juror and helped determine the most promising startups there.

Though his life as an entrepreneur was far more satisfying than banking, he couldn’t let go of his banking habits. He worked as a financial expert for over 20 years and helped most SSUF startups with their finances. The same year he co-founded SSUF, the also founded Think Reloaded, a financial advice firm.

When it comes to discussing Swiss Startup Factory in interviews, Mike Baur’s the first to jump at the opportunity. He knows what it’s like to have a job that he didn’t want to do. So, talking about SSUF is just as fun as working at SSUF.

Most of his responsibilities involve financing and fundraising. He worked in banking for over 20 years so there’s no one better. Even though he’s the finance guy, he’s also the guy that chose to follow his passion.