Meet Pasit Viwatkurkul, a self-made serial entrepreneur that is featured in various news outlets such as Forbes Magazine, Entrepreur.com, Prestige 300, Gulf News, and many more. In 2012, Pasit Viwatkurkul started Music Freelancer in his tiny bedroom. He started it due to the frustrations faced in hiring other musicians and editors for his band. Several years later, the platform took off, and since selling his Los Angeles Based Startup for 50 million dollars, today he is focused on expanding into various business sectors with his father Jakapun Viwatkurkul. His current company, Mstar Holding, combined with its subsidiary investment, Mstar Capital Group, is worth more than 700 million dollars and is expanding through UAE, India, and Thailand with sectors in advanced Technology development, Foods, Real Estates, eCommerce, Rare Earth, Finance, Education, and Healthcare. Today he will be sharing his method of thinking and the startup mindset he implemented into his fast-growing company, which is to always move fast and stay humble on the path forward.
Move fast and try things early. Risk is key.
Interview: What do you mean by moving fast and trying things early?
Answer: I tend to move fast with all my ventures. I try to learn as much as I can in each sector and dive feet first into it without hesitation. By actually doing the work, you can see the obstacles much more comprehensively and learn how to work around them in order to avoid the obstacles early. If you don’t start the process, then you will be left wondering if the system will work or not. I learned this through my time in Silicon Valley, CA. Implementing the system and launching it right away enables early feedback reception, which facilitates early identification of key problems and how to work around those problems. This is key to any business’s success.
If you feel stuck, move! You are not a tree.
Interview: Many entrepreneurs get stuck or feel like their path is blocked. What do you think about that concept?
Answer: I believe that mindset is completely wrong. Each individual has the ability to move and not stay in one place. If you feel like you are stuck, then there are infinite possibilities and paths to take to avoid that. I understand the path may sometimes get us stuck with roadblocks, but each person is not a tree. They can move if they choose to. If you are stuck in your startup, then I suggest you explore every alternative means first before considering yourself as being “stuck”. A good mentor or colleague can also help remove the roadblock as well.
Step back and think three dimensional
Interviewer: What do you mean by thinking three-dimensionally? Can you elaborate more on this concept?
Answer: By thinking three-dimensionally and sometimes stepping back, you get a bird’s eye view of your overall products and business. Most entrepreneurs use their feelings and believe that their products will change the world but don’t realize the reality of it. They often overlook their products and the customers’ feelings before they even start. For example, I tend to build and invest in projects and products that benefit the customers and the current situation that it can solve. By “stepping back” and viewing the products as a customer, you can see what pieces can be moved around. This allows the products to connect more with the customers, and the overall growth of the business will occur once it can clear the customers’ concerns. Of course, there will be people that don’t understand your products, which is fine, but the key point is to grab the ones who do and expand upon that. The rest will eventually start to adopt your product.
Bootstrap mindset is key
Interviewer: We often hear companies and entrepreneurs trying to focus on raising huge amounts of money for their products or ideas. Is that a good mindset to start out with?
Answer: I remember talking to a great investor from Startup 500 many years ago at a Portugal Web summit conference. To this day I can remember his words. He said, “ If you really want me to invest, you must be dying or really want to sell your company to me. Bootstrap is crucial until you reach a point where you are actually in need of dire money”. I also believe in this method and always keep it in my mind when I try something new. Everyone is so focused on raising money but don’t realize when they actually get the money and hence fail to meet investors’ expectations in their product growth. In the end, this causes their product to fail. Most startups fail due to focusing too much on raising money than actually making a great product first. I always put this mindset first. This allows me to maximize my resource into key areas of the product and company, which in turn allows me to grow without burning through all the cash.
No matter how big you are, think like a startup.
Interviewer: Your company is growing fast but you still think like a startup. Explain how this mindset contributes to your growth?
Answer: This goes back to thinking three-dimensionally as well. In a Startup, you have to take risks, move fast and try to stay alive by any means necessary. A good startup always tries first and is not afraid to fail. By having this mindset, our company stays humble, moves fast and targets key points effectively. Most large companies can often get “distorted” due to their size. By thinking that we are a startup, we ground ourselves and move 200% faster in all our projects and ventures. We cut costs in key areas more effectively, we implement new ideas faster, and most importantly, take new risks with ease in mind because we think we have nothing left to lose. This allows us substantial growth and makes us stand apart from our competitors.