Ep 13: Being Prepared to Start Your Business VS Just Starting Your Business – An Interview with Varag Gharibjanian

Ep 13: Being Prepared to Start Your Business VS Just Starting Your Business – An Interview with Varag Gharibjanian

In this episode I speak with Varag Gharibjanian, CEO and Founder of ActuateTech. Actuate helps companies discover tech that accelerates growth. They are a B2B platform that help enterprises create faster, easier, and better partnerships with deep tech companies.

Varag shares some wonderful “Nuggets of Truth.” And we cover the following topics:  

  • Whats important about launching a startup? Starting the right company and picking the problem to solve. Working with what you know, who you know and what gets you excited.
  • What is “Deep Tech?” Foundational technologies that are hidden in infrastructure level. There the deep in the technology stack. For example, the program that uses computer vision is at the top of the technology stack; but the computer vision algorithms that are used within a mobile application, would be considered in the technology stack and thus deep tech.
  • What have you learned about VCs and raising money? If all three basics are met then the VC or at least an associate VC will evaluate the opportunity.  
    • MARKET: How big is the market? How fast is it growing? Where is this particular venture is trying to operate? If the market is growing fast enough, even an unexciting project can still do decent.
    • PRODUCT: What is the what is the product? How is it differentiated from what’s already out there? How is it solving the customers’ unmet needs?
    • TEAM: Is it the right team to align and nail that product-market-fit? 
  • What deep tech areas are you focusing on? The future of virtual reality and augmented reality

Nuggets of truth to shorten your journey:

  • What would the future version of me be happing doing? How did you decide this was the problem to solve? For me, there was a moment of truth. I really wanted to start something. And I tried a lot of different stuff. I tried prototyping different things. At a certain point, I sat down on myself and said, What is the problem that I have? And what is a problem that people around me have? I literally drew like a Venn diagram. What is common? What is the common set of problems there? What do I love to do? What excites me about the future? What would the future version of me be happy doing? When I combine those together, that’s where I landed on this song.
  • On starting – There really is no other preparation for starting a business, than just doing it. Having great courses or classes is not the same as just doing it.
  • On starting – Timing is so important to starting a company
  • Priority – People first, technology second.

About the Guest:

Varag is the Founder & CEO of Actuate, a B2B partnership platform for deep tech companies. He is also the CRO of Clay AIR, a leading machine learning software company that specializes in HMI related computer vision.

Personal Links


About the Host:

Philip Topham is The Savvy Founder. Philip has an inquisitive mind and passion for ideas. He’s impatient to see tomorrow’s future today. He focuses on helping technical founders unlock their pragmatic dreamer and develop their business skills and social capital.  With more than 25 years across start-ups and corporate roles, Philip has been everything from janitor to the Founder and Chief Everything Officer.

Philip can be found camping, hiking, or playing billiards with friends; and he loves a good ‘international’ pot luck.

. Words of Wisdom

  • Ideas are worthless; revenues are priceless; surround yourself with smart people.
  • Life is a journey – mole hills or mountains? it’s your choice.

Connect with Philip at:

Linkedin – https://www.linkedin.com/in/philiptopham

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Website – https://www.philiptopham.com

Clubhouse – @thesavvyfounder

Free resources: 10 Most Fixable Pitch Deck Mistakes @ https://www.thesavvyfounder.com

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