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Conversation
Highlights

 

Welcome to another episode of Category Visionaries — the show that explores GTM stories from tech’s most innovative B2B founders. In today’s episode, we’re speaking with Laura Kornhauser, CEO and Co-Founder of Stratyfy, a predictive analytics and decision management solutions provider that has raised $10 Million in funding.

Here are the most interesting points from our conversation:

  • Laura’s Journey to Founding Stratify: Laura shares her transition from a decade-long career at JPMorgan Chase to entrepreneurship, influenced by her engineering background and a personal mission driven by her family’s entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Inspiration from Literature: Laura discusses how “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “Oh, The Places You’ll Go!” have significantly impacted her outlook as an entrepreneur, emphasizing lessons on societal issues and the entrepreneurial journey.
  • Stratify’s Mission: Stratyfy is focused on enabling financial institutions to better understand customer risk through advanced analytics, aiming to improve financial inclusion by addressing structural biases within the financial system.
  • Early Challenges and Breakthroughs: Laura recounts the initial difficulty in convincing risk-averse financial institutions to adopt Stratyfy’s innovative technology and the persistence required to secure their first customers.
  • Rapid Growth and Team Expansion: Over the past year, Stratyfy has seen a 400% increase in its customer base and nearly doubled its team size, testament to the company’s impactful mission and innovative technology.
  • The Importance of Mission Alignment and Problem-Solving in Talent Attraction: Laura attributes Stratyfy’s success in attracting top-tier talent to a shared commitment to their mission of financial inclusion and the opportunity to solve complex, meaningful problems.

 

 

Actionable
Takeaways

Leverage Personal Experiences for Inspiration:

Laura's story of being inspired to start Stratyfy after facing credit rejection emphasizes the power of personal experiences in identifying market gaps and opportunities. Founders should consider how their own experiences can highlight systemic issues or unmet needs, serving as a catalyst for innovative solutions.

Mission-Driven Approach Attracts Talent:

Aligning your company's mission with broader societal impacts, as Stratyfy does with financial inclusion, can be a significant factor in attracting and retaining top talent. Entrepreneurs should clearly articulate their mission and ensure it resonates with the team's values and aspirations.

Persistence in Customer Acquisition:

Stratyfy's early challenges in customer acquisition underscore the importance of persistence and creativity in sales, especially in conservative industries like finance. Founders should be prepared for a long engagement process, utilizing every opportunity to demonstrate value and maintain engagement without pushing for immediate conversion.

Iterative Product Development Based on Market Feedback:

Starting with a single product focused on credit risk assessment and expanding based on customer feedback and identified needs illustrates the importance of being responsive to market demands. Entrepreneurs should stay closely connected to their customer base to identify opportunities for product expansion or refinement.

Building a Supportive Founder Network:

Laura's openness to connecting with other founders for support and advice highlights the importance of a strong peer network. Entrepreneurs should actively seek out connections with peers for mutual support, sharing experiences, and navigating the challenges of startup life together.

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