It’s so simple and pragmatic!
Serial entrepreneur Mika Mäkeläinen was seated in Sifter’s humble meeting room in Helsinki, where the company’s employees presented Sifter’s investment principles: the mechanical sifting process, the focus on the best companies, its strategy for long-term investments.
He began feeling excited.
Over the years, he had received a slew of invitations from many an asset manager – especially after each successful divestment – and he had met several over lunch or coffee.
“For most asset managers, investing means betting for and against companies and focusing on current trends. Sifter’s calm approach is what sets it apart.”
Mäkeläinen was not at Sifter’s office in a personal capacity. He was helping an Asian family that had amassed its wealth in the fashion business establish a family office in Europe. The family’s Finnish intermediary had run into the people from Sifter at Slush and arranged a meeting.
Mäkeläinen had jumped at the first chance to be in the meeting, and now he found himself thinking whether he should invest in Sifter as well.
If you do this for a decade, you can’t go too wrong, he thought, and after a few months Mäkeläinen and the investment company of his business partner joined Sifter’s roster of owners.
“Far too many entrepreneurs get caught up in the speculation game even after their exit, spending their cash on every startup they see.”
“The fact that you hit it big once as an entrepreneur does not mean that you will succeed as a startup investor,” Mäkeläinen notes.
Startups are demanding investments that can take up a lot of your time. One single investment is rarely enough, and they will ask for money again and again.
When you have the fiery blood of an entrepreneur pumping in your veins, investing directly in the stock market rarely provides the desired results.
A person who thinks that they can game the market is likely to waste their money on the wrong bets and excessive trading.
The only way to win is to have a calm approach and a clear-cut system.
One year ago, Mäkeläinen was asked to join the board of Sifter Capital Ltd.
“At one point, I had decided that I wouldn’t rejoin the boards of even my own companies in any active capacity, but this opportunity was too interesting to pass up.”
Mäkeläinen was a satisfied fund unit holder, and he knew that the company was in top condition.
Even though he had already been involved in multiple corporate boards, the finance sector was completely new to him from a board management perspective, which made it an enticing prospect.
“My own companies operate in such different fields that I felt that Sifter would be an opportunity to learn about the business and develop my personal expertise.”
Mäkeläinen was appointed to the board of Sifter Capital Ltd in the shareholders’ meeting in spring 2019.
“I believe that I can provide Sifter with fresh ideas and new ways to develop the fund into a remarkable growth story. The growth potential of this fund is unbelievable,” Mäkeläinen concludes.