#033 - Elements of building a successful tech business, with (proven) serial entrepreneur Milton Chang of Incubic Venture Fund, USA

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By Balint Horvath, Balint Horvath: Entrepreneur, and Innovation Specialist. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

I’ve had a very special guest, who I got to talk to. My interviewee, Dr. Milton Chang, is a serial entrepreneur with an impressive, long track record of building hardware companies.

Milton is currently managing partner of Incubic Venture Fund. He was president of Newport and New Focus, which he took public. In addition, the companies he incubated resulted in six IPOs and close to 10 acquisitions. He currently works with several companies, including Aurrion (acquired by Juniper Networks), MBio Diagnostics, YesVideo, and Protein Fluidics. He’s a Trustee of the California Institute of Technology and has recently served on the SEC Advisory Committee on Small and Emerging Companies. He writes a business and management column for Laser Focus World.

Milton is also the author of Toward Entrepreneurship, a book that I consider as one of the best books on entrepreneurship - find out in this episode why.

You can find out in this episode what it means for him to found a company, to grow slowly or fast. You can also learn what you should pay attention to if you come out of academia to start a business, what separates a good from a bad business idea and many many more.

Raw transcript is available at: https://www.thehardwareentrepreneur.com

Show highlights can be seen below:

  • Toward Entrepreneurship - Milton Chang’s book – [3:48]
  • Starting a niche business modestly versus rapidly growing a business in a hot field - [6:48]
  • Bootstrapping explained with two examples from his own experience - [8:52]
  • What were the critical ingredients that helped Milton start his companies? - [11:51]
  • Ingredients that are typically missing in founders who start out right out of school, e.g. after a Master’s or PhD program? - [14:13]
  • Self-actualization inside a company - synchronizing the employees’ and the company’s needs [19:02]
  • What separates a good business idea from a bad one? - [21:50]
  • Pros and cons of different sources for financing a start-up - [23:50]
  • Fueling your own dreams - [27:37]
  • The field of photonics as an enabler for other industries - [29:18]
  • If you could time travel and go back in time, what notes would you give yourself? – [32:48]
  • Which book had the biggest impact on his career? – [30:07]
  • Milton’s morning routine – [34:43]
  • Milton’s observations on Asian and European cultural differences – [35:30]
  • What is the best way to reach Milton? – [37:10]

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