Learn from our community entrepreneurs! In this interview, Maximilian Fleitmann shares the story of building and growing Fleitmann Ventures UG, located in Senden, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Hi! I am 29, based in Berlin, and I have been building web projects and companies since I was 13 years old. Back then, I started selling graphics, websites, and scripts online and always thought: “Wow, that's amazing. I can get money for something I would do for free.”
After some entrepreneurial experiments, back in university, I created my first big company, called StudyHelp, with the idea of bridging the gap between offline and online tutoring. The company scaled quite quickly to over 200 cities and a million website visits per month; we also raised several rounds of funding.
But, feeling stuck on the things I was working on, at some point, I decided to leave the company on an operational level. And I found something that I couldn’t stop thinking about - the relationship between founders and investors and how everything about fundraising works.
Since then, I have been spending my time on two fronts. On the one hand, I decided to become an investor myself and since then have been investing in companies all over the world, from India to Brazil. On the other hand, I have been growing my company BaseTemplates and some other projects.
BaseTemplates is your go-to place for fundraising material. We are selling different templates, such as pitch decks or financial model templates, and offering custom pitch deck designs. In addition to that, we are also sharing knowledge, lessons & best practices around fundraising and entrepreneurship.
When I was first raising money for my education company, I had no clue what I was doing. I neither had the network of investors nor knew how to fundraise or build a pitch deck. So, I ended up making many mistakes.
Back then, I bought a pitch deck template from a small website. I liked it because of its perfect structure. Later on, I met the website’s founder, and he told me that he wanted to sell the business.
After checking some of the numbers, it became evident that I had to buy the company and use my experience to bring it to the next level. And that's what I did. In 2019, I acquired BaseTemplates and grew it from one product to five. Over the years, I have helped thousands of founders raise money for their idea.
For me, the biggest challenge has always been maintaining a strong focus. I am the type of person that comes up with more ideas than I could ever bring to life and gets excited about them quickly.
But having only minimal resources in my startup phase, I had to learn the hard way that I couldn’t do it all at once. And if I nevertheless tried realizing many ideas at once, I often ended up with a bunch of half-done tasks.
That’s why I always create three months OKRs for myself and the company to know exactly what I will be working on - and even more importantly, what I will not be working on over the following weeks.
That helps a lot, but staying on my plan remains a huge struggle to this day.
I am a big believer in giving before taking. And that's why I decided to build a content engine around BaseTemplates. I create valuable content like blog articles, free tools, interviews like this, and more that I use to bring people to our website.
If they like the content, they will convert at some point into paying customers. Using this strategy, we have not spent a single $ on marketing for our product.
One thing that was particularly helpful for us was working with partners. There are plenty of sites that are targeting early-stage founders. Many of them are happy to include BaseTemplates as an additional service for their customers.
Over the last years, this strategy helped us to go from hundreds of $ per month in revenues to over 5-digits per month.
If you are a solopreneur, startup, or small-medium business owner, and would like to share your story, expertise and thought leadership, then please answer an online interview questionnaire. Your feedback on building successful teams can also help fellow entrepreneurs learn to scale. We’d love to feature your journey in our community.
In today’s world, the key to the future of businesses lies in harnessing the power of technology and community-based networks for growth. The small business industry faces several challenges, such as digital adoption, rising customer acquisition costs, declining margins, difficulties with partner recruitment, talent shortages etc. Grow Peer is a Peer-to-Peer (P2P) business platform that helps small businesses connect with customers, engage partners and hire on-demand talent in innovative ways, with no service fee. Create a free account today to explore more.
Empowering SMBs with smart tools and cost-effective solutions to address their sales, marketing, operations, and talent needs. Our solutions are specifically designed to fuel the growth of local communities.