During college Katz knew he was great at research – however, he felt he could fix a broken system (where research was concerned), so he started a company when in college. He created “Research Connection”, a platform that helped students, involved in research, to connect with faculty members. He went on to build a similar system for medical students, looking to connect for their medical research.
“It is a different ballgame” Ariel states when talking about H1 Insights. He shared how a company has to build credibility, where B2B ventures are concerned, trying to garner the first 10 customers. “After that, if you do a good enough job with your branding and positioning, people search more about you – and then it’s all about value.”
As a Y Combinator alum Ariel was all praises of the platform he got, to push his venture on. “YC is awesome!” He was not in it to learn how to be a founder, as H1 is his third venture, “but what I am getting out of YC is meeting amazing like-minded people, developing really good friendships, getting introductions to the best VCs in the valley, getting introductions to press, helping us with recruitment.” He also compared how different it is between East and West Coast investors’ pitching orientation. Where on the West Coast investors want to know about the vision, the East Coast looks to the hard numbers and metrics founders have.
Ariel is confident that in 5 years, “H1 is going to be the place where every single person who wants to engage with a doctor, see a doctor, work with a doctor, fund a doctor’s research is going to be using H1.”
He has exacting needs where employees and software developers are concerned for his venture; he only wants the very best talent working for H1 – he is confident about his company culture being so strong, that it does not matter whether the resources are remote or in-house. He strongly believes that a founder needs to love what s/he is doing, because contrary to popular belief, outsiders may think that it would only get easier after the first million, or hiring the first employee – it is literally the complete opposite. It gets more challenging and harder. It is part of the game. “(It is an) insane amount of work and you should know that you are signing up for like a 10-year rollercoaster ride.” Make your company your husband or wife – it requires that level of commitment.
“Don’t start a startup to get acquired” is what this founder had to say.
Hear on to listen to more practical advice from a founder who loves doing what he does.