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Name: Petra Kassum-Mutch
Business: Eve-Volution Inc.
Location: Toronto, Canada
Industry: Media & Publishing
Reason for starting: After my last business sold, I decided to take a break from entrepreneurship for a while and actually try my hand at a job again for a while. After some time running a university start up incubator and serving as Entrepreneur in Residence at others, I became increasingly frustrated with an innovation eco-system that clearly did not serve women* entrepreneurs well, especially if they were pursuing what I call “Middle Kingdom” ventures.
Middle Kingdom ventures are highly innovation and growth oriented, but focus on applying and adapting new technologies versus inventing them. I also noted that media coverage presented a VC fueled and Marvel Comic super hero view of the world of entrepreneurship—a world many women* (gender expansively defined) simply did not relate to. They wanted to see their approaches to venture development championed and their stories told. So I started a digital publishing and trans media company, www.Liisbeth.com, to do just that.
Related: Read about another digital media start up here.
How do you define success? Simply, a bias-free innovation eco-system that supports a broader range of industries and approaches to venture creation and growth. We would also love to see 10,000 or subscribers supporting a move in this direction.
Biggest success: We are most proud of the number of amazing writers and creators we have been able to attract to write for our publication. We are not anywhere near profitable yet. I believe in the “Slow Growth” model and while I may take on a strategic investor at some point, we are not ready yet. I am very proud of our ability to have bootstrapped it to this point.
What is your top challenge and how you have addressed it? I have a lot of experience in creating and growing ventures. So I know the drill in starting up. However, determining the right type of digital publishing model that will work best for us and our market has been a journey of iterations. We are still trying things, and learning from them.
Related: Start-Up Ideas for Budding Business Owners
Who is your most important role model? Catherine the Great. She forged ahead despite incredible obstacles (including attempted murder!) and changed a country.
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Edited by The Story Exchange