MIT analyzes what drives Spanish entrepreneurs

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Wanted: A man between 31 and 40 years with a Master’s degree or doctorate, specializing in the business sector, humble, with a history of family business and who is, above all, persevering.

According to a study published in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Review, this is the average profile of the Spanish entrepreneur. The ‘Barometer of entrepreneurial success in Spain’ (pdf) demonstrates that our local start-up ecosystem has some peculiarities that set Spaniards apart from the common American stereotype: A young man who, in Mark Zuckerberg fashion, becomes successful with a revolutionary idea fresh out of university.

The study, which was conducted using testimonies from 110 successful entrepreneurs, aimed to identify their keys to success. One interesting finding was that Spanairds were less concerned with turning around quick profit. Surprisingly, their top motivations were named in the following order:

Self-realization: Reaching hapiness through the development of a business plan was the primary reason that led respondents to become entrepreneurs.

Purpose: More than obtaining profits, the successful entrepreneurs surveyed said that it was important for them to achieve their projects’ main objectives, ranging from contributing to society to the creation of jobs.

Innovation: Their projects’ contribution toward technological progress is another factor that motivates Spanish entrepreneurs.

Excellence: According to the study, the successful Spanish entrepreneur does not mind sacrificing some of their profits if it means their project will have a higher quality or a greater influence.

Profit: As a fifth priority, the securing of income to ensure the project’s survival and viability was one of the motivations among the Spanish entrepreneurs that were surveyed.

MIT analyzes what drives Spanish entrepreneurs

These five reasons for starting a business may result in a successful project, but they do not in themselves amount to some magical formula or equation for coming up with a great business idea and raising the necessary funding. There are many other factors that, according to the study, determine which business projects will be successful.

According to the experiences of those entrepreneurs that participated in the study, optimism and perseverance should be combined with a complete dedication to the project, family support, a good team and a network of contacts as wide as possible.

Spain is not Silicon Valley. Therefore, following an American model when starting a business will not ensure its success – nor does success necessarily come to younger entrepreneurs, or those with good ideas alone. At least not in Spain, according to MIT’s findings.

Mobile World Capital Barcelona promotes entrepreneurship as a catalyst for mobile innovation and as a key agent for the progress of the economy and business community. The Programme of Entrepreneurship and Innovation (PEI) is currently one of the foundation's main efforts, and is meant to accelerate this transformation.

The PEI’s activities include 4 Years From Now (4YFN), an international mobile entrepreneurship event sponsored by Mobile World Capital Barcelona to place supply and demand in contact, promote knowledge transfer, and encourage networking among entrepreneurs, professionals, startups, accelerators, incubators and investors from around the world.

Mobile World Capital presents a global vision that effectively integrates mobile technologies into the fabric of the industries transforming our lives. Committed to expanding the mobile experience throughout Barcelona, Catalonia and Spain with strong support of the public and private sector.

Mobile World Capital is leading mobile transformation through commitments in Competence Centres, local Industry Development, and Entrepreneurship and Innovation programmes.

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