Base Conference is the newest business event in the Netherlands dedicated exclusively to a very specific and sensitive moment of a company’s journey: the scale-up moment. The first edition (spoken in English) will take place on May 29th, in Amsterdam and it already gathered an impressive array of interesting speakers. I spoke with the organizers to find out more about who would benefit most from attending.
Who should attend?
According to BASE founders, Veronica Guguian and Lana Jelenev, the conference focuses on start-ups that have received their 3rd round of investment(s) and are ready to go to the next level. SMEs that are planning new launches or want to enter new markets are also welcome. Entrepreneurs who want to scale from a ‘one-man team’ to a business utilizing multiple teams, systems and infrastructures will find the event useful as well.
But what does this really mean? If you are not sure that your company is at the point when it can and it should scale up, read further, it might help you decide if Base Conference would be an useful event to attend for you.
As a basic definition, most theorists agree that a scale-up is a company that has already developed an MVP (minimum viable product/services), said product was already validated within the marketplace and the company itself has proven that the unit economics are sustainable at their current size. In other words:
- You are done experimenting with what your product should look like and which features should have
- You know who your ideal customer is and you figured it out already what is the best client segmentation for you. You are at that level of clarity that allows you to know what it takes to acquire new clients (in terms of costs and effort)
- You have organized systems in place for maintaining quality control and completing projects on time (no more “let’s figure it out how to do this project” and more “we’ll do it as we documented for the other 15 projects”.)
Now, if you relate with all of the bullets above, you are probably at the point in your company journey where the scaling up in on the table. Note that I said “it’s on the table”, not “is” or “should”. The reason I chose to formulate it that way is that not all companies who fit all three points are scaling up, or want to do it. If you are happy with the way your company is right now and you feel that scaling up is not for you, then, by all means, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. With a few exceptions, no company is ever required to scale up by necessity. And since Base Conference addresses topics that are hot and sensitive for companies who want or have to scale up, then this event is probably not for you.
On the other hand, if you decided by now that you can scale up, but you’re not sure if you should or how to do it, read further. I will try to pinpoint a few of the challenges that companies face when they arrive in that point of their journey. If your business can relate to any of the following, then you should attend the conference and chances are you’ll find there a good answer for most of your questions. You have a scale-up challenge if:
- You know by now how to make new customer acquisition for your company, but you feel that you are close to the point you cannot manage efficiently new ones with the team and processes you currently have
- You have a good business model locally, but you spotted good market opportunities internationally that you want to take advantage of by expanding in those markets and you are not sure how to do that
- You are looking for investors to fund your expansion plans and you are looking for the best strategy to approach them, since this time you are looking for more serious funding than before
- You have more clients than you can handle and you are still trying to figure out how to modify your current business model in order to fit all the requests
- Your clients are happy with your product, but they repeatedly told you that they would like to buy complementary products from you or they might leave you for companies with more comprehensive offer. You try to find a way to do that since you realized it’s impossible to include them in your offer if you maintain your current business model
- You have a successful business and you are happy to stay at the point you are now, but you start noticing worrisome market changes and arising competition that you cannot fight at the current level
- You had a successful business, with more clients than you can handle, so you started hiring more people, setting systems in place and investing more. Yet the results you were hoping for are below expectations, some of the clients are starting to feel unhappy with your services and morale is getting low within your newly enlarged team
BASE Conference addresses all of the above topics from a practical point of view so, if you are currently facing one of the above challenges, you will not be wasting your time attending.
I like that you can have a sneak preview and a first taste of the big event, by signing up for one or all the free BASE webinars preceding the conference. You’ll have the chance to listen in advance to some of the speakers and see what they have to say. That way you can judge for yourself if this event is really for you.
I will keep editing this article as soon as I have new information about this event so, if you want to stay tuned, please subscribe to my blog. I hate spam so I will be sending only a quick message when a new post was published, that’s all.
Also, Supermarketing will be present at BASE conference so, if you want to meet me in person, I will be happy to have a chat with you.