6 Things You Can Learn From This Entrepreneur Who Started With Nothing
Stelian Balta is a Singapore-based serial entrepreneur and investor having invested in more than 40 companies since he started his company
Building a successful company is not about ‘luck’. It takes a great deal of discomfort, restlessness, relentlessness and grit to start with an idea and build on it every day. Each entrepreneur’s journey is filled with lessons unique to their struggles and challenges.
Business owners have been taught valuable lessons from learning how to run a business to learning how to be an entrepreneur. Such is the journey Stelian Balta, the Singapore-based founder and CEO of HyperChain Capital, a digital assets management and investment company. Balta is a serial entrepreneur and investor having invested in more than 40 companies since he started his company. Despite his success at a young age, he actually started from nothing as a teenager. At only sixteen years old, he designed and created online games and became a millionaire investor after making his first million dollars at the age of 24.
It’s not only his entrepreneurial success that has been noticed but also his philanthropic spirit. When asked about his company’s philosophy, Balta was quick to point out that, “Since we started HyperChain Capital a few years ago, my philosophy was to always do good.” To learn more about his journey and biggest takeaways, he shares his top six startup lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs.
Get comfortable with failure
With great failure comes great success. “I think getting comfortable with failure is very important. I failed many times. You need to try and build many things,” says Balta. “I’ve always loved to experiment and build things and being an entrepreneur allowed me to do that. I started with nothing, the lack of support and lack of money can be very frustrating initially, but after you embrace failure and accept that it is part of how things work, starting a company is much easier.”
Every entrepreneur’s dream is to become successful in their ventures, however, this comes with price: you have to come to the full realization that failure is part and parcel of success, so don’t let it stop you from picking up where you left off and carrying on again.
Anticipate the future
According to Balta, “Anticipating an important need in a continuously evolving market is an important quality of a great entrepreneur along with a great execution. Also, timing is an important component of the mix.”
If you want to become a successful entrepreneur, forget the things that have already been done and start focusing on creating something new. Try to look at things from a different perspective and be innovative, assessing and measuring what could happen in the future with what happened in the past and what is happening right now.
Do what you love and are good at
If you don’t truly love and have a passion for what you do, you will likely quit on your dream as so many budding entrepreneurs have done in the past. You need to absolutely love what you do to be able to push through the tough times. If you can find something you love worth pursuing, the rewards are incredible.
“In my early 20s, I was very passionate about creating games. After five years in the gaming industry, I felt very close to the cryptocurrency market, because we created games and monetized them through virtual goods. Getting into the crypto market was a pragmatic and logical step to do, considering my work experience. Because we’ve seen in games how virtual items can have real monetary value, we were one of the first supporters and investors in the digital assets industry.” says Balta.
Develop strategies to mitigate risks
“As an early investor in such a volatile industry,” Balta says, “any startup or business has a huge level of risk. Our main strategy was to invest in people, to be there from the first discussions around the idea and plans and help them with strategy, funding, and processes. There are many unknowns but being there in the field with the entrepreneurs I think is a good strategy to mitigate risks.”
As a budding entrepreneur, you must come up with various strategies to reduce risks in order for your company to survive long-term, be it through diversification, planning and forecasting obsessively.
Never stop learning and working
You must constantly invest in your education/learning to generate any real returns. This means putting in the time to learn new skills that will see you able to build something unique and desirable. It’s important to stay focused on the collection of assets such as new skills, connections and experience for your portfolio.
“Basic stuff like reading a lot and working hard all day give you an important long-term edge, whether you’re lucky or not. In ten years, it is unbelievable how things can change,” Balta explains.
Never be afraid to execute
Business ideas alone are worth little. If you want to start a business and become successful at it, you need to be bold enough to execute your ideas. Execution is everything in business; an idea without action is tantamount to nothing. “I’ve always loved to experiment and build things and being an entrepreneur allowed me to do that,” adds Balta.