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Third episode talking about M&A and how to sell your business with our friend Mike Counihan, from Transcend Partners.On part 1 and part 2, 脌lex and Mike discussed the first stages of the contact with prospective buyers, when to use M&A boutiques, what's the protocol, what to say, what not to do, how to calculate your price, how and when to prepare, how to keep it from leaking to the team and more.In this occasion, they discuss the three examples of M&A we've seen at MarsBased recently with three of our clients that have exited in the last six months: Spin to Tier, ValuationMetrics to Citadel Securities, and a third client we can't disclose that sold the technology, but not the team (because we are the team that built the project).If you want to learn how to calculate your valuation, differences between outbound and inbound M&A, how to establish relationships and cool off acquisition talks with potential buyers and more, then this is your episode.Also, unless you email us telling us to stop hosting Mike, we will keep recording episodes with him. You're warned!馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We've been collaborating with developer bootcamps throughout the years to ensure that we contribute to the next generations of developers, which is one of our favourite ways of paying it forward.LeWagon has consistently been adamant at teaching not only one programming language but many. In fact, they know the value of learning multiple programming languages because they're developers themselves.We talk about their business model, incentives, how to tell a good bootcamp from a bad one, learning Ruby, how to teach and train new developers, bootstrapping a business, how they fundraised during the pandemic, and much more.If you love Ruby on Rails, this one is for you. If you don't love Ruby on Rails, we can still be friends.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We sneaked into 4YFN (4 Years From Now), the startups conference of Mobile World Congress, to host a Startup Grind event - an event within a bigger event.Factorial acquired Codegram, a Rails consultancy we respect a lot, in December 2019, so this is one of the topics we cover in this interview, and how organic vs. inorganic growth are working out for them, how they make their company culture permeate the lower ranks of the company and how they create new leaders and managers internationally in the context of hyper growth.It's a shorter episode because we were only given 30 minutes at the conference. We're too much to handle, we guess.And no. 脌lex and Jordi didn't coordinate to have the same boots on the same day. You'll have to check the video to see this.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
BOOM! the audio intros and outros are gone! We keep improving and iterating this podcast thanks to your feedback, making it a little bit better every day.In this occasion, we talk to the man, the myth, the legend, mr. Francisco Cruz, who spearheaded the community growth of Startup Grind globally, since their very first days to well over 300 chapters worldwide. Nowadays, he works at Notion, but that's not very relevant because we miss him at Startup Grind.At MarsBased, we have been organising the Startup Grind chapter of Barcelona since we founded the company, in early 2014, and continue to do so eight years after, without ever having skipped a single month. Month in, month out, we are hosting events with the most relevant entrepreneurs and investors around.Back to topic: with Francisco, 脌lex discusses community building, cohorts of new applicants, bootstrapping an initiative like this, values-driven organisations, hosting events and conferences, cultural differences and they walk down nostalgia lane, hand in hand, reminiscing about days gone by.If you're curating a community and are building tools to nurture it, either with code or no code, this episode is for you!馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:隆
We have been curating the weekly newsletter of Startup Digest Barcelona since 2016 at MarsBased. Startup Digest contains a curated list of the best events in every city and we send it every Monday.We hosted Jessica Ford, their Director, to speak about the early years of Startup Digest, how they bootstrapped the project, how they built a bespoke platform and how they eventually migrated to Revue most recently. Also, and most importantly, we also cover the Techstars acquisition of the project.We talk a lot about newsletters, which is something we had never covered in our almost 100 episodes of both feeds of Life on Mars, and they're still VERY relevant in 2022. In fact, they keep evolving with the edition of dynamic elements, the new approach of certain innovative email clients like Superhuman, Spark and others.We also talk about the role of newsletters and established brands in startup ecosystems to build community like Startup Digest, Startup Grind, FuckUp Nights, TEDx and other brands available for entrepreneurs out there and how sometimes these brands will work better than your own ideas. Because, let's face it, your ideas are not that great, Jim. Let's face it. It's time to talk about that.We also noticed that every paragraph in this description starts with "we". What a great way to talk about community, focusing always on the "we".馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
OK - this one is a BANGER. It's got everything we like: async work, remote, hard opinions on corporates and VC-backed businesses, disruptive management styles, calendar & meetings management, how to grow company culture in fully-distributed teams and lots, lots of product.Amir has been spearheading Doist, the remote company behind Todoist and Twist, two tools that every remote company - mostly on the async side - should implement, for many years. He's become a fundamental thought leader on Twitter and on podcasts and events to talk about what we cover in this episode. At MarsBased, we truly look up to this company and we're so thankful for all the learnings they've shared on their blog throughout the years.Learn from Amir and 脌lex, in a conversation where the models of Doist and MarsBased are confronted and compared in areas like how to manage junior personnel, how do our employees report to C-levels, how we do our one-on-ones with the team and much more.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We discussed no-code one year ago with Ben Tossell, from Makerpad, a few weeks before he sold his company to Zapier, in what would become the first Zapier acquisition ever.One year later, we decided to bring an expert in the subject, Nile Frater (Director @ NoCode.Tech) to bring us an update on the state-of-the-art of the no-code/low-code/less-code/wtf-code industry.We discuss at length the myths and legends of no-code and the conversation turns into a career plan for non-technical people, to repurpose themselves into pseudo-technical profiles who can build software, thanks to the progress of no-code tools.Also, we discuss how big corporations can build teams of no-code people to replace the need for engineers for everything. Sometimes, some automations and a landing page will do, and you can do that by combining Typeform, SquareSpace, Stripe and Zapier, for instance.We discuss this, and much more, with Nile, who comes all the way from Scotland and now resides in Barcelona, but we'll discuss weather on another episode!馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
Hope y'all are having a very restful winter break wherever you are in the universe!We're kicking off the year with our chin up and a very positive attitude to bring you the best content for this podcast, and we're also super thankful for your following and support throughout this year and a half of episodes!In this occasion, we bring you an interview with our CEO 脌lex, from late 2019, when he was interviewed at IndieHackers BCN to talk about bootstrapping businesses, indie development, B2B sales, being an officeless company and how to hire and nurture less senior talent in an all-remote environment, and the challenges we faced as a company back then. We also delved into what was our product, at the time, a project that never saw the light of day - but we won't spoil you why.脌lex also went over his relationship with Startup Grind and how this was combined with MarsBased in the first years of the company, and how he sold the idea to his two co-founders.脌lex is also the kind of person who writes in third person when speaking about himself, like right now - but he's not a bad person.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
Our CEO apologises publicly for the interruption of the programming of this podcast. We've gone through very busy six months, culminating with lots of launches of big projects and a major acquisition of one of our most important clients - just to name a couple of events.脌lex rambles on for half an hour about these past events and how we've dealt with them, how this has affected team morale, what things have we stopped doing and other subjects like the changes in the jobs market (The Great Resignation), how boutique devs will struggle in the next years and how difficult it is to work with big corporations as a small company.All the above derived in a blunt conclusion: we need to raise our prices, so if you're reading this and want to work with us next year (not for us, as 脌lex wrongly speaks during his rambling), it's a good time to talk!馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
Community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community community is all we see/hear and talk about nowadays. Everyone has an opinion on it but, truth be told, most people don't know jack about it.That's why we brought in Mark Birch, from AWS, to discuss with our CEO 脌lex what is community, why is it that fucking hard, and who can and who cannot do community. Let's dispell myths, drop some f-bombs and hard truths about community building, and most importantly, why most corporates will never understand the underlying truths of community.If you want to build community around your project and/or have first-hand experience doing it and know the real pains: empty events, plateau in growth, lack of motivation, other projects sucking all your energy, toxic people in your events and whatnot, then this episode is for you.This episode is also for you if you want to be the person in your group of friends listening to the most interesting podcast out there. Your choice.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We start this episode very well by stating that marketers ruin everything, so we don't expect to make a lot of friends with this episode - at least in the marketing industry.That's why we invited marketing & growth expert Thomas Petit to discuss ethics in product, marketing and growth because we really like his own perspective as an opinionated expert in those fields.We discuss the incentives of marketers and the philosophy of growth, especially that of VC- backed businesses and how that intersects with UX and technology. More specifically, we drill down into some of the most used dark patterns in marketing nowadays and who are the people using them and the reasons for it.If you're addicted to the dopamine kick of seeing interactions on your social media profiles, or you're getting tired of seeing the same tone, messages and tricks in each and every app you're using, you should be listening to this episode.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
For six hours, Facebook and some related services, like Whatsapp and Instagram, disconnected themselves off the internet.The whole world turned to Twitter and to other similar services, taking them down too because of the spikes in unexpected connections, all the while they were overloading the Facebook servers with the incessant F5s from anxious people, trying to connect like crazy to Zuck's empire.We brought two friends of the company to discuss this piece of news on an impromptu call: Jordi Mir贸 (CTO @ TheHotelsNetwork) & Victor Castell (Job&Talent).In this conversation, we discussed what to do when an outage like this happens to your company: what kind of team to assemble, what to document, how to coordinate, what to announce externally and internally, how to do a proper post-mortem and more.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
One more episode remembering conversations from other events to kick off the new season of Life on Mars.We're bringing back the panel we hosted on our Startup Grind Tech 2019 Conference with our CTO & Co-founder Xavier Red贸, and Laura Gonz谩lez, from Schibsted, where they discussed hiring and managing developers, comparing the methods and workflows of a huge corporate like Schibsted with ours, at MarsBased.Huge congrats if you make it past 脌lex's longest intro ever.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
In this episode, our CEO 脌lex talks at length about the new season of Life on Mars and all the changes that come with it.It is a symbolic change, not a full season change, so you won't see a different episode numbering. Instead, this is what we will change:More diverse formatsContent linked to current events & newsMore and stronger opinionsMore talking about what we do instead of just listening to other companies脌lex goes on talking about what's happened during the summer of 2021 to the MarsBased spaceship, detailing team changes, operations complications, a couple of clients selling their companies, projects starting/finishing, and whatnot. You will see more changes coming up on our social media, next episodes and our blog, too.It might as well be that he recorded this episode because he didn't have anything prepared after the holidays break. Everything is possible.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
For this last summer edition of Life on Mars, we're going all the way back to October 2018, when we hosted Elisenda Bou (CTO & Co-founder of Vilynx) at Startup Grind Barcelona.We usually don't host CTOs nor too technical people at Startup Grind, but Elisenda is not only a kickass CTO but also one of the co-founder of one of the most innovative startups in Barcelona.Recently, Apple has acquired the company, but at the time, they were hitting scale-up phase. Vilynx is a self-learning platform that categorises video for some of the most innovative companies in the planet, all developed from Barcelona.In this fireside chat, Elisenda and 脌lex nerd out on how to hire developers, how to structure teams, how to promote senior staff and delegate (spoiler: she doesn't/didn't delegate), where do they find Python/AI talent, and how to and not to micromanage people, among other topics.Good acquisition, Tim Apple 馃憦馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We're repurposing an old (but still rings true today!) fireside chat we hosted at IronHack Barcelona in March 2017 with our good friend Dorion Carroll.Dorion had just quit his role as CTO/CIO at Zynga and was about to join Amazon as VP of Customer Engagement Technologies. All the while, he spent some time travelling, and visited us in Barcelona.Actually, you have heard Dorion before in this podcast, in episode #7 How to keep the house clean: sunsetting legacy systems and tech hygiene.The audio recording is pretty terrible - our sincere apologies for that - but the content is very good and we think that every aspiring entrepreneur should listen to this conversation where the following topics are discussed:Misconceptions and myths in the tech industryCompanies vs. products vs. featuresHow to pick technologies for new projectsHow to find a technical co-founder or CTOHow to hire developersCurrent technologies vs. more established programming languagesHow to communicate the cost of tech to non-technical business partnersAnd more!Also, you can enjoy Dorion's infinite tech wisdom and 脌lex's failed attempts at standup comedy throughout the course of this fireside chat.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
For this episode, we'd like to share a small interview with 脌lex, our CEO, at an investors pitch event hosted by our friends at itnig.This time around, 脌lex is the guest, while Bernat Farrero (Co-founder of itnig), interviewed him in the middle of the pitching event with startups for the Itnig Fund One, where 脌lex is a partner (for the full disclosure).Bernat improvised a fireside chat with 脌lex to talk about his multiple initiatives, covering:How we work at MarsBasedWhy we have ARR as a services-based companyEconomics of a company like MarsBasedWhat is Startup Grind Barcelona and how it is managed from MarsBasedWhy haven't we gone into productWhy we don't have churn either in clients or employees脌lex's adventures in angel investingIf you want to see 脌lex sweating bullets when asked about financials*, you ought to see this episode.* Thank god we've got Jordi to make sure that the company is financially viable.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
Studies show that over 50% of people have experienced sexual harassment at work, and even a bigger amount of people have witnessed it.We can't operate in business without acknowledging this and doing our small contribution to addressing this situation, irrespective of our team size.That's why we decided to bring on Eleanor Manley, CTO and co-founder of Metta Space, a deeptech company with the goal to completely eradicate sexual harassment at work. They do so using NLP (Natural Language Processing) and big data.We discussed how sexual harassment happens at work and the cultural differences between countries and cultural backgrounds, and also how being non-native in a given language brings people to pick the wrong words and how this can be solved with technology.From the technology standpoint, we cover their techstack, how they are training and cleaning their dataset (trained with Reddit data 馃槺), NLP, Python, text and chat processing and moderation and censorship in technology.Watch 脌lex in full serious mode, tip-toeing on very muddy waters and being very concious about his word choice to avoid getting into trouble!馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We had the pleasure of hosting Didier Lafforgue, creator of LocomotiveCMS and CEO of the development agency NoCoffee.In 2016, we compared all the Ruby on Rails-powered CMS systems out there to pick one with which to build sites for less tech-savvy clients who wanted an alternative to Wordpress. We picked LocomotiveCMS, and we have been using it ever since to build any size of projects, like the one we did for Startup Genome.We talk for an hour with Didier about the following topics:Why he decided to build another CMS when there were a lot of them already.How to balance product vs. services.Why he picked its techstack (Ruby on Rails + Liquid).How to create a product roadmap.Building first, finding clients later.Bootstrapping a tech product.How to balance client requests vs. gut feeling.His vision for the CMS market.Comparison with Wordpress.Fuckups and lessons learnt running this project.These topics, saltpeppered with our seasoned Catalan and French accents, in a heartfelt episode that will satisfy both techies and product people.It might also upset Wordpress lovers, but to be honest, who cares.馃幀 You can watch the video of this episode on the Life on Mars podcast website:
We wanted to celebrate our seven years as a company with a very special episode. Seven freaking years, already.We decided to take questions from the community, our closest friends and colleagues from the industry. The response was overwhelming, and we ended up with so many questions that we decided we're going to record an episode of Q&A with the founders every few months.In this first episode, we talk at length about our origins as a company, how we came to get the Startup Grind chapter, how we picked our technologies at the very beginning and how we see the future for all of them (more specifically for Ruby) and we also share a lot of anecdotes and lore of the company. You can't miss it!We recorded this episode in both English and Spanish, but in the English version you won't find any catalanadas from Xavi. You'll have to wait for the Spanish version for that!
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