Granted, I am not the most regular taxi app customer there is — normally I prefer to walk, cycle or take a boda as what’s the point of paying to be stuck in traffic — but still, last Saturday was the very first time I had the pleasure of having a female driver.

Surprisingly she mentioned it was more the women than the men who were not comfortable seeing her in a taxi. I guess because it reflects on their own insecurities.

SPARK OF THE DAY

I’m going to take this conversation as an excuse to once more stress to…


It may have been a coincidence, but I fear it might be just a general issue -

Over the past few days I had two individual transactions blocked by two different banks: one when I tried to pay for my groceries from my personal account at the supermarket; and the other when I tried to pay someone for rendered services via my business account.

In both cases, the respective customer service agent had to raise the issue with their IT department, and in both cases after getting a call back, they claimed they didn’t have a trace of a failing…


Eliud Kipchoge training for Sunday’s Mission Marathon in Twente. Photo by NN Running Team.

This weekend I was surprised to suddenly see my former hometown area being featured as the centre of the universe — at least when it came to athletics: Eliud Kipchoge won his first marathon since London in October last year, and possibly his last before the Olympics in Tokyo in August later this year.

Originally the marathon was to be held in Hamburg, but with Germany locking down its borders because of Covid, Airport Twente saw an opportunity and stepped up to the rescue.

SPARK OF THE DAY

In normal times, Airport Twente would never have been able to compete…


As an entrepreneur we sometimes feel not even one day can go according to plan. Right when we think we have some time to recover from firefighting then out of the blue several game-changing opportunities come up that all require attention NOW.

The result is we keep being stuck in the here and now: I do what I need to do to survive this crisis 💥

SPARK OF THE DAY

In The Netherlands we have a saying:

“The soup is not eaten as hot as it is being served.”

No matter how deep the crisis or stressful the times, don’t…


The other day one of the participants in one of our programs confessed he was struggling to under­stand the concepts in one of the more advanced modules — instead of having to go through once, he needed to go through not even two but three times before the pieces started to fit together in his mind.

In short, he hadn’t been used to having to stretch himself and was seriously questioning if he was doing the right thing. I have seen this with many other participants as well…

Isn’t that what learning should be all about though? …


It is fascinating to see how the western world continuous to see (East) Africa as exotic — the blanc canvas to which anything and everything still has to be added.

I have no other explanation trying to understand why else 50+ ride hailing apps have tried to launch in Kenya alone over the past two years, while the market is pretty much already taken by local (LittleCab and Maramoja) and international (Bolt and Uber) companies very well established here.

My biggest frustration is not even with the startups themselves trying to enter the market, but with the enormous amounts of…


It might be a coincidence, but as a customer of quite a few entrepreneurs I am not getting the timely attention I am looking for. It seems the entrepreneurs I am buying from were so concerned with making the sale, that they forget about the delivery part.

As a customer, you’re buying a product or service because at that point in time, you have a high level of interest for it. That level of interest will fade after a certain period of time though. In my case, I can be very patient with a company selling a carpenter’s workbench as…


“I wish I’d known this before, then I would have been much further”

I think many entrepreneurs during their lifetime will have epiphanies like the one quoted. In this case one of the participants in our Access to Funding program was lamenting all the resources he wasted back in the beginning when these resources were merely nice to haves, not yet must haves.

Ah, hindsight is a beautiful thing!

Imagine though, that as a starting founder you would have kept all austerities in check, you would have colored within the lines of your capabilities and you would have kept your…


In continuation of yesterday’s spark -

I had a very interesting conversation with someone I’ll call Tom yesterday. Tom is a good friend of mine who last year started his own business. Quite soon in the conversation he mentioned how much more easy life would be if only he would get some seed funding.

A comment I have heard oftentimes including in the discussion forum of our matchmaking program…

Don’t get me wrong, I would love for Tom and any other starting entrepreneur to get funded, but I’m afraid for many it would not solve their issues.

When I poked…


There are still starting entrepreneurs out there who think success is all about the idea, while real life entrepreneurs know coming up with the idea was the easy part:

These past few days I’ve been contacted by several people who did not want to share what their idea was about (besides it being “big” and needing “lots of funding”), but were expecting me to share my network of investors with them.

Besides having no reason to expose my contacts to these wannapreneurs (and no, my issue is not that I want you to pay me as one of them suggested)…

Liesbeth Bakker

Innovator | Creator | Vintage Geek | Tech Enthusiast | (Co)Founder The Entrepreneurs Hub - The 4th Horizon - Gini Tech

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