This is an interview excerpt with José Zurstrassen, the #EUCrowdShow Ambassador and MyMicroInvest Chairman.
Question: How can a small business in a European country grow and expand across the market?
Response: "Let's imagine that a person in a small business in Hungary wants to grow across Europe and expand to each country in the EU. The main barrier will be fragmentation, all of the casual fragmentation in Europe, across borders and between cultures.
For instance, if you want to expand to all 28 countries of Europe, you basically need your website and your mobile app to speak 24 languages, which is quite a lot, so it needs an investment, an investment in translation but also an investment in coherence. So it does take a lot of time and a lot of effort to make the offering compatible with the pan-European market because of that fragmentation.
At the same time, there are a lot of Europeans who understand one another, who speak at least one foreign language, including English, German, Russian, Italian and French.
At MyMicroInvest, we want to be the tool to allow entrepreneurs to grow their company beyond their national borders, and where else than the 28 other countries of Europe.
We want to help European entrepreneurs to actually benefit from the large market we have, with the 507 million European citizens that represent a combined savings and cash-accounts sum of about 9,000 billion euros. We have the same opportunities that the American entrepreneurs have in America, but here, in Europe. There already is a huge possibility, a huge capacity for investment into new companies here in Europe.
What’s more, there is a willingness for many Europeans to use their money to help the youth, to help young Europeans launch themselves, create their own business activity and create tomorrow's economy.
There are not so many alternatives because, basically, if you had money “sleeping” in the bank, you won’t receive a good interest rate; at the moment it is quite low and inflation is still present. Second, the stock markets are becoming more and more of an expert-only market: people don't have the time to figure it out on their own, and people need help to navigate the market. It's becoming a full-time job to be able to invest into the stock market. Most of the products that are offered by the bank are not extremely exciting, and many people are still fearful or frustrated there will be another 2007 or 2008. And the accounts of the banks have become too complex for most people to understand. "
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