Startup Reflections 2019

December 30, 2019

We asked some of our ICE71 startup leaders to share with us their thoughts and reflections for 2019. Here they are!

“The greatest lesson that I have learned as a founder in 2019 is that it is all about the team. Bad hiring decisions can have a tremendous negative impact and that’s why it’s important to take the time and continuously improve the hiring process. I couldn’t be happier with the team we now have at GuardRails and we are continuing to grow fast. One of the clear highlights in 2019 was joining the ICE71 Accelerate programme, which opened a lot of doors for GuardRails. ICE71 helped me understand why an accelerator like it exists. It was through this programme where I met the great Cocoon team, which ultimately led to the close of our seed round! I can’t wait to see what 2020 has in store for us, but before that I wish everyone happy holidays and a good break.

Stefan Streichsbier, GuardRails, ICE71 Accelerate Cohort 2

“2019 was the second year of Aiculus’ existence and reflecting back on the past 24 months put into perspective how far we had come as a company and a business and how much there was still left to do. I learnt to be better with my relationships, to nurture them and look after them better than I did before.”

Omaru Maruatona, Aiculus, ICE71 Accelerate Cohort 3

“Joining the ICE71 Accelerate program was one of the highlights of a busy and exciting 2019. A lot was learnt from meeting and collaborating with other entrepreneurs in the same field, not to mention that it was ton of fun! A key revelation this year was realizing that cybersecurity can enable new value. Traditionally, cybersecurity was a sunk cost; you bought it because you had to, and it did not bring any value-add other than making you safer. However, by changing how you look at things, cybersecurity can create new opportunities and value for customers. For example, we found that customers can provide more convenient data access to their clients, now that they use our technology to protect their content. In other words, cybersecurity enabled this customer to provide more value to their customers. Looking ahead, I hope we can expand on this theme of creating new value through cybersecurity; making new friends, collaborators, and partners along the way. Have a happy and secure holiday season, and cheers to a rocking 2020!”

Hiro Kataoka, 689Cloud, ICE71 Accelerate Cohort 2

“The greatest lesson for Threatspan in 2019 is that, as a resource-strapped startup, it pays to learn how to be patient in providing value upfront to potential clients—if it’s the right partnership, these efforts end up paying off in the long run. We are also very thankful to have been selected as one of the finalists for the prestigious Seatrade awards, among others. For the next year, we’d like to continue driving safe innovation and cybersecurity awareness in the maritime and offshore industry.”

– Leon Yen, Threatspan, ICE71 Scale

“My greatest highlight of 2019 – the birth of Cylynx. The second greatest highlight – getting to know the great community in ICE71. From the friendly faces in CyLon to the awesome cohort in ICE71 Accelerate 3, thank you for being such a great community! I guess our goal for the next year is to scale up! Wishing everyone a great 2020! 

Timothy Lin, Cylynx, ICE71 Accelerate Cohort 3