P | P | P – our chat with Stratiphy
We caught up with Nikki Hawkes, Co-Founder at Stratiphy, an app for sustainable investments and personalised strategies to trade like a pro.
Dan @ ADLIB: Can you please introduce yourself, what your business does, what stage you are at currently and what makes your business and offering unique?
Nikki Hawkes: Hi, I am Nikki Hawkes, Co-founder & CMO at Stratiphy. Stratiphy is a robo-advisory investment app. As a team, we have combined experienced from quantitative banking, marketing and mobile development. We’re here to empower a new generation to make smart, responsible and informed investment decisions tailored to their profiles.
We offer multiple investment packages depending on investors requirements, from our basic free package, starter, advanced, professional and enterprise, all packages offer unique and bespoke features, from European & US stocks, portfolios, ESG ratings, Benchmark indexes, trading signals and more. Ultimately, you can access the same personalised analytics that the professionals use, but in the palm of your hand!
Currently, our product is in BETA on the Apple store and Google Play. We are very thankful that we have received backing from SetSquared in Bristol and Barclays.
Dan @ ADLIB: Can you share the story behind the origin of your business and Service / Product?
Nikki Hawkes: Dan Gold created Stratiphy in March 2020 out of a need to track his own investments in a less time-consuming way. I then joined him in September 2020 to help bring the product to life. I graduated from Southampton University with a BSc in Economics and Actuarial science and over the past few years I’ve been creating events and speaking at events. Also, I have been hosting conversation on market trends, investor challenges and I’ve been involved in projects contributing to issues of environment, sustainability and inequality.
Dan has 8 years experience in investment banking, a PhD in algebraic geometry and has previously set up his own solar energy company which sold over £2m in stock. Our passion for impact investing brought us together for Stratiphy.
Investing habits are changing as retail investors are bringing new kinds of behaviour that a long-unchallenged industry suddenly has to adapt to. Stratiphy was tailor-made for this investing era, which we are excited to be a part of.
Dan @ ADLIB: Speaking of People, can you share some challenges you have faced, are facing or are anticipating around scaling and growing your team? Do you have any top tips you could share with those businesses faced with the same issues?
Nikki Hawkes: Where to start with this one. As we created Stratiphy in 2020, it has been very challenging growing a team remotely during a global pandemic, but fortunately, we have managed to engage with talented professionals, and we have grown the team.
I would make sure you have thought about your process, can you deliver an engaging interview process via video calls? And meetups are a very good way to network and engage with professionals, even vc meetups!
Dan @ ADLIB: Moving to Product, what has been your approach to understanding and implementing product market fit or sales cycles?
Nikki Hawkes: We have worked and tested with market experts and surveyors to understand what features investors and potential investors want to see. We are using ESG data from Sustainalytics to help people compare companies according to their environmental, social and governance ratings. They can use this simply as part of their stock analysis, or they can integrate it into a strategy. For example, if you wanted to create a strategy which only invests in manufacturing and tech companies with a high environmental score, you can. Stratiphy will then send you custom buy and sell signals to help you build a sustainable portfolio.
Dan @ ADLIB: And then Potential, can you share some challenges or barriers you had to overcome to create a Product / Service offering with potential?
Nikki Hawkes: Managing timelines within product development for the first version of something is very tough. We had a web version MVP, and turning it into an app has been a long but rewarding process. You want to take feedback from people, but not so much that your final product ends up looking like a patchwork quilt of half baked ideas that aren’t yours.
Working remotely 24/7 has also been challenging as productivity and synergy between the team isn’t at its full potential. However, it does have a silver lining as there has been much more access to investors who are willing to jump on a pitch call.
Dan @ ADLIB: Investment can often be a challenge for start-ups & scale-ups. Do you have any piece of wisdom you could share around best approach?
Nikki Hawkes: Make sure you do your research and have a business plan, growth plans for short, medium and long term, this will make your business more attractive to potential investors. If you’re an expert in the field this also helps, as you will most likely have a network of people you have previously graduated with, worked with or crossed paths with. Attend mentoring groups, especially ones where you can develop your pitching skills in front of panel pitch listeners as this will help you when you are pitching to potential investors.