Starting up

Моше Финаров
Unfortunately, numerous high-tech entrepreneurs still follow the old and ineffective method of trial and error, which results in an astonishing statistic: only about one tenth of all new high-tech companies survive and only about one tenth of all R&D projects
eventually become sellable products. There is undoubtedly a great waste of human energy and material resources, which should be avoided if possible. The main challenge of entrepreneurs in any high-tech field is to introduce more new ideas to the market. In addition to overcoming scientific and technological risks, entrepreneurs must make many
difficult managerial decisions, to resolve many complex interdisciplinary problems in a very short time, often under constraints of limited resources and budgets, and with everchanging market conditions. Most new entrepreneurs have neither the knowledge nor the personal experience to create a successful high-tech business; thus, they rely on intuitive thinking in multiple, complex, and often uncertain situations. They wish for the best but you know the rest….
Having spent my entire life as an entrepreneur and having undergone my own trials and tribulations, I have always tried to learn from my own experience as well as from that of my partner – the high-tech veteran, Dr. Giora Dishon, and from my friends and colleagues as well as many other knowledgeable people. Moreover, I have tried to establish some clear, practical rules that can be used to avoid mistakes in the future and to ensure that
creating and implementing technological innovations is achieved productively and economically. Many years ago I began solving this puzzle, starting with methods of systematic creative thinking, and by further learning additional different business and managerial aspects of high-tech entrepreneurship, including studying recently different schemes of startup funding. Finally, I have summarized all this experience in the form of a new methodology of creating and transforming a new technical idea into a healthy business, which is the essence of successfully establishing a startup hi-tech company.
Several years ago I began teaching this methodology to M.S. students (in electro-optical engineering) at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and have seen in real time how much their state of mind has changed from naive intuitive ideas (though most of the students study at the university as well as work in high-tech companies) to well-conceived business, marketing, and managerial strategies. Today, after completing this work and applying the developed approach in my own on-going entrepreneurship practice, I confidently can claim that the symbolic number of “one tenth” results from improper management of the entrepreneurship process. I sincerely believe that by adopting the presented techniques, all entrepreneurs can achieve a much higher rate of success.
The presented methodology, however, does not automatically ensure success. It only provides guidance regarding what is the most cost effective and expedient way of advancing and what is the best method of searching for a solution. Thus, it assists in
analyzing problems, but it does not itself solve any of them—only the entrepreneur himself can achieve this. It is a helpful tool for entrepreneurs and R&D personnel to make their organized thinking and work actions much more effective; in this way it can significantly increase the probability of forthcoming commercial success. Still, the personality, creativity, and professionalism of entrepreneurs and R&D leaders remain the main success factors governing any commercial venture.
This book consists of seven chapters, which are the main building blocks of the entrepreneurship framework:
Business opportunity (market analysis and estimation of projected revenues)  New product (justification and specification of a new product)
Business model (finding a way of profitable operation)
Innovative solution (methods of inventing novel technical concepts)
IP protection (basic knowledge regarding protecting inventions by
Developing products (R&D project planning and management)
Startup funding (business plans, the funding process, and funding options)
I strongly believe that the main secret of success in establishing a startup is in right managing all the above issues professionally, without exception, and with the same degree of importance. Mistakes in fulfilling even one step in establishing and maintaining
the startup will result in a failure either immediately, owing to a lack of proper funding, or because of poor execution of the business plan. I hope that this book will provide to high-tech entrepreneurs sufficient awareness as well as a foundation of useful knowledge.
Hence, it will help them to avoid serious mistakes in their practice, and consequently will significantly increase their chances of success.
Since about 90% of this book is devoted to the methodology of transforming a new technical or marketing idea into a successful commercial product, I am sure that it will also be useful to R&D personnel - scientists, engineers, and managers who deal with product development in established high-tech companies, but who do not see themselves as entrepreneurs and want to enhance their professional and managerial skills.
I wish the readers of this book a fascinating journey to the magical land of high-tech creativity and would like to write on your ship’s flag only one slogan: “Put most of your efforts not just on reaching your goal but on finding the right way of reaching it”. By doing so and relying on established knowledge in all the necessary fields, you will usually succeed in bringing your innovations to the market quickly and efficiently and will make many people throughout the world happier.


Moshe Finarov