Most of us have dreams or adventures we hope to carry out during our lifetime, but often times the responsibilities of our daily life and current career track gets in our way.
But some ideas are just too good to let go, too exciting to put off doing any longer.
Amleto Montinari had an idea like this, and left his jet-setting life as Vice President of Strategy at J.P. Morgan, to pursue his startup dream in Barcelona:
“My family thought I was crazy at first, leaving a secure job, a lot of money on the table and a really interesting role that includes international travel, great hotels and amazing restaurants. However, after watching me work on Fluttr until 2 am every day including weekends, and waking up early every day to take care of my normal life, made them realize this is the path I should be on”.
LinkedIn with a Heart
Fluttr is the first social network that wants you to rise to your vision. It is a mobile-first platform that helps you meet people with the same interests, to discuss topics you love in a group with people that care about the same things as you. Amleto believes that it’s through this type of platform that one will truly be able to expand their knowledge and professional connections in the most efficient and effective manner.
“According to Gallup, only 13% of the global workforce is satisfied with their own work. We’re trying to build a professional network that cares about users’ values and dreams, and trying to help them making their professional dreams a reality.”
There is also a degree of gamification, as users can rise in levels depending on how they use the platform, everything from a “User (level 1)” to “Genius (level 9)”. Later on, the plan is to match people with the same level and similar interests in specific groups.
“Luck plays too big of a role in our professional life. We hope Fluttr can change this a little bit and help the best people find each other, meet, interact and hopefully build the next Apple.”
Amleto explains that he sees LinkedIn as their main competitor, but he also briefly mentions Weave, Xing and Viadeo.
3 Essential Values
Since Amleto was 19 years old, he thrived in the role as a leader:
“My first real job was during university, I worked my way to becoming president of a small company when I was 21 while still studying. It was a company where only students could work and the idea behind it was to put in practice what we were studying during our BA degree. I truly loved it. I still rank it as one of the most important professional experiences I have ever had.”
After university he joined the corporate world, working in global companies like PWC, UPS, in the early days of PayPal and then finally landed at JP Morgan.
From his 14 years of professional work experience, there are three things Amleto wants to bring with him to Fluttr:
“A true undisputed love for the concept of product, the realization of the fundamental importance of strategy and planning, and the importance of working with great people,” he explains.
Amleto clearly remembers the moment he decided to go all-in on Fluttr:
“One Sunday morning in March, I sent a sketch of Fluttr’s brand identity to a friend of mine. She replied to me asking if I ever took any breaks and how it could be possible that I was working on a Sunday morning. I replied that this wasn’t work; it was love. That morning I fully realized that leaving JP Morgan and focusing exclusively Fluttr was the only option on the table.”
The feedback from his former co-workers at JP Morgan has been mostly positive:
“‘Wow’ – has been the general reaction when they discovered that I was leaving to start working on a project with no funding and no salary, yet.”
These days, Amleto is talking to different potential investors, but he and his co-founders Alessandro Franzi (CTO) and Stefano Scarrone want to test their beta on users to make sure they have their model right, before looking for funding.
Leaving a secure life to pursue something very insecure, as a startup founder is not for everyone.
“Of course it scares me, but I mostly see it as a great challenge, an adventure. It might go well or maybe it won’t, but there are a few things that reassure me through this transition: our team, our objective, and the fact that we’re based in such a great city.”
Amleto explains that he wouldn’t be able to pursue Fluttr without his family’s backing.
“I’m lucky that they trust me and see that this makes me truly happy. I have their full support. I also do really believe that Barcelona is a special place to start a company. This is the place where I met the entrepreneurs that have inspired me to follow this path.”
Fluttr is still invite only, but Barcinno readers can become beta users – click here!
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