In a nutshell, what is Loqr and how does it propose to improve website security?
Loqr is, above all, a disruptive Authentication solution! With that we mitigate risk and avoid high costs to any organization threatened by credentials takeover, abuse and fraud. With embedded machine learning and risk assessment techniques, we developed a surprisingly easy multimodal authentication platform compliant with organisations’ high level assurance needs, while maintaining user side simplicity.
Is the web an insecure medium?
In one word: yes! We have made amazing progress in terms of technologies in the last years and decades but, amazingly, we are still using the same authentication mechanisms the Roman Empire used 2000 years ago. They are not suitable for current security needs but since they are convenient, we tend to forget it… We are going to change that!
How do QR codes come into the picture?
We are completely agnostic in terms of technologies, but QRCodes were the most successful way we tested with users to pass information from one side to another that worked in all smartphones. They had and still have their purpose in our solution, but they are a very small part of it, although a very visible one.
What lessons did you bring from both the Web Summit and South by Southwest?
They are very different events. The Web Summit is an amazing event, with lot of buzz, especially in Europe and with a lot of attendants. If you do your homework and really prepare your presence, you can meet with a lot of very different people, in different areas, and get a lot of feedback. If you don’t, you will be completely lost with all that is going around at “lighting” speed. South by Southwest, especially the Startup Accelerator Award, is much more focused on the presenting startups. It is also much more focused to and for the US and North America. It is an amazing event to get to know the US market specificities, to get expert mentorship and feedback, and to get contacts for future use when addressing that market.
What are your growth plans for the remainder of 2016?
Our goals for 2016 are to consolidate Loqr in the Portuguese market and “jump” with a physical presence to the UK market.
You’ve worked for companies, been a college teacher, and are now a founder. In what role do you feel most comfortable in?
Above all I really like to learn with challenges. All the things I have done were, at some point of my life, challenges which I have learned, a lot, from. They make me who I am today. Right now, I really like being a founder and all the challenges attached. I am having the most challenging learning curve ever, and really love all this dynamic.
What’s the single mistake you learned the most from?
Shares distribution. Better, not having a shares distribution plan. You should really think how the shares of your startup should be distributed from the beginning, and which amount of them you are willing to alienate in each phase of the startup growth.
How does the European startup scene compare with the USA?
They are, in my opinion, very different scenes, mainly because of the different mindsets of the involved actors. The startup scene in the US is more present, it started earlier and it is easier to find “makers” which had success (or not) in the past as entrepreneurs. They understand better the startups “crazy” world, how fast everything moves, their difficulties, their strengths, their weakness but, above all, their differentiation and the opportunities they could represent. Because of that, they are also more willing to share their feedback, to share their experience with others and, when they like the product, to help with new contacts even with competitor corporations. They also give feedback faster, positive or negative. Europe startup scene seems to be struggling to catch up. The mindset, although slowly, is shifting. More startups are having success and more entrepreneurs are coming back “on-board”, some in different positions. We need yet to shift the mindset of the corporations. They need to trust and believe more in startups, in their potential and how, with some help, they can become great partners or suppliers.
What other startup is on your radar and why?
TalkDesk: I really think Tiago and Cristina “story” is fascinating.
To find out more about Loqr visit https://loqr.io/