Mike Baur Sticks To His Principles

Mike Baur co-founded the Swiss Startup Factory (SSUF). He is also a managing partner within the company. Mr. Baur has more than 20 years of banking experience. His former employers were UBS and Claridien Leu. The other co-founders of the Swiss Startup Factory were Max Meister, an alumnus at the University of Bern, and Oliver Welzer. He was a juror at the University of St. Gallen’s START Summiteer contest. As of early 2016, Baur was appointed the vice president of CTI Invest. In this period, he also led partnerships with Goldback Group and Fintech Fusion. Baur appeared on the December 8, 2016, Wall Street Journal print edition. This edition explains why Baur became more interested in entrepreneurship than banking.


Baur was raised in the Swiss region of Freiburg. He was a business student at Bern University and the University of Rochester. At the age of 16, he found a banking apprenticeship program at the Union Bank of Switzerland in 1991. During his UBS career in the 90s, he served as an advisor for wealthy Swiss investors. Baur ended his career at UBS in 2008. He had a prestigious job that lasted for almost six years at the Clariden Leu office in Zurich. The “red tape” involved in the recovery from the recession discouraged Baur from continuing his banking career. Mr. Baur left Claridien Leu in 2014. Prior to Baur’s role as VP at CTI Invest, CTI Invest began to collaborate with SSUF to start the Swiss Startup Day event.


Participation in SSUF’s incubator program allows Swiss entrepreneurs to have access to mentors, training in marketing, financing, rent-free office spaces, and networking with other entrepreneurs. At the Start Sumiteer contest, the founders of 30 new companies can make oral presentations on their products, business plans and models to the public. Swiss Startup Factory provides money to companies that have less than $1 million in funds. Experienced experts in finance serve as judges in the contest. The winning startup in this contest has the highest plan aspect ratings. Therefore, they would receive the most in funding. Thanks to the participation of Baur at the START Sumiteer contest, the Swiss Startup Factory turned out to be a trusted and popular incubator in business.


Mr. Baur established Think Reloaded, a financial advising firm, in 2014. The word “factory” is included in the SSUF name because it reflects the industriousness of the entrepreneurs at SSUF’s incubator program. This program differs from other incubator programs because it is privately owned. He is a board member at BV4. In July 2016, an alliance with BV4 and SSUF was established. With this alliance, Swiss Startup Factory can benefit from BV4’s appraisal services. Prestige was less important to Baur than passion. Taking the path of entrepreneurship allowed him to be successful and stick to his principles at the same time. The primary concentrations of Baur at Swiss Startup Factory are financing and fundraising.


James Larkin, the Labor Leader

James Larkin was born in 1876. His parents were emigrants from Armagh; Mary Ann McNulty and James Larkin. The family was in the working-class and, therefore, had to struggle to get something on the table when the day ends.

James Larkin Junior’s father worked with a firm in Liverpool, and the family, due to their status, resided in slums.

James got used to growing up under these conditions. Most of the families like his had a particular arrangement during that time. The grown children would go to school and later after their classes, work.

All the efforts were always for one common cause, which is to provide for the family. James Larkin being no exception, worked well with the arrangement as soon as he turned 7. However, this was not long-lived because his father passed on, a few years later. The family was bruised because one of the breadwinners was gone. But as always, life had to move on.

James Larkin was always hard working and determined. He had a spirit to keep going even when there were no longer grounds for him.

He found his way around a few jobs before he became a docker, and a few years later, a dock supervisor. He liked his post and got married in 1903 to Elizabeth Brown.

He became a socialist soon after, and a strike that took place at the docks made him a principal interest to the National Union of Dock Laborers, NUDL. The strike involved foremen, and NUDL liked Larkin’s spirit. He became a member of the union in 1905.

James Larkin was the secretary general of NUDL. He and Larkin disagreed on the leadership of the union, and this led to a dispute that was never resolved. James Larkin then moved to Dublin and was not there for long before his militant methods, which were not acceptable to NUDL, led to his release from the union.

Unskilled Irish workers were not treated fairly. James Larkin was against this unfairness, and therefore, formed the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union, ITGWU. Four Years later, he started the Irish Labor Party. This party was formed by both James Connolly and James Larkin.

It conducted strikes in Dublin. The significance of Irish Labor Party, however, was not in the number of strikes that they led, but the lockout that involved more than 100,000 workers. It was the greatest in Dublin.

James Larkin went to the USA a few years later. He was arrested in 1920 and released a few years later. He was deported to Ireland and had his eternal rest in 1947.

Learn more about Jim Larkin:


How Jim Larkin Left His Mark on Irish History

James “Jim” Larkin is a name that will bring out a variety of emotions in any Irishman. Jim is known as one of the forefathers for the Irish socialism movement in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.

Larkin grew up in a very blue collar family and from the age of eleven onward worked very blue collar jobs himself. He eventually would find work as a foreman of ships at the local docks. From this job he would go on to join the National Union of Dock Laborers. Read more: The Definite Biography of Big Jim Larkin

His practices for this union were seen as too extreme even by fellow union members and thus he moved to Dublin. The grueling long hours of physical labor quickly gave him quite the disdain for the wealthy and ultimately led to his utter hatred of the way capitalism has workers in constant competition with one another as opposed to working together towards one common goal.

This way of thinking would ultimately lead to Jim Larkin’s forming Ireland’s largest union of the time. What came to be know as the Irish Transport and General Workers’ Union (ITGWU) fought for many of the same things unions today are still fighting for which include but are not limited to fair wages, safe working conditions and benefits to help support their families back home.

“Big Jim Larkin” got this nickname for obvious reasons. His size is said to have been one of the reasons he was looked at as a leader and his powerful presence often commanded the attention of the room. Later in life Larkin went on to help bring the Irish Labor Party to the forefront of Irish politics and again helped both stage strikes for the better treatment and fair compensation of workers.

Jim Larkin and the Labor Party also were firm opponents of World War I and frequently held protest for the war in downtown Dublin. Throughout his entire life Larkin was a firm believer that he needed to lead by example. Because of this mindset he never took on any vices.

Larkin neither drank nor smoked in the hopes that his own actions would inspire a generation after him to follow in his footsteps and fight for the causes that meant something to them. Many Irish and other international activists, whether they know it or not, can trace their causes all the way back to the same fights James Larkin was having over one hundred years ago.