Interview with our new co-founder Esther


Interview with our new co-founder Esther

Read 1034 times Last modified on Thursday, 07 March 2019 06:34
image 2019 03 07

A warm welcome to our new co-founder Esther van Loon! She is currently still looking for a co-founder who joins her on her adventure to disrupt the pharmaceutical industry with a digital startup. Curious to learn more about her? Check out the blog below...

What drove you to join Holland Startup as an entrepreneur in residence?
I want to restore the public and private balance within the pharmaceutical industry. When I was writing my thesis, I realized how complex the pharmaceutical industry actually is; the system is complex, there are many different parties involved all with different (self-)interests. Furthermore, the industry is not transparent and it is therefore difficult to define a real problem definition. Let alone come up with a solution. My head was a jumble of problems and once I formulated a problem definition, I had difficulty investigating/supporting the problem. That is when I realized the pharmaceutical industry is too complex to build a disruptive startup on you own, which is why I joined Holland Startup; to help me focus and coach me through the lean start up.

Tell us what you’re going to be working on with Holland Startup and your co-founder?
Together, we are going to build a disruptive startup to change pharmaceutical cultures. First,  we will perform field research to improve our knowledge regarding the pharmaceutical industry. Then we will clearly define several problems within the industry and together will choose the one that we find most interesting and build a startup from it.

What is your learning goal in the first month?
Focus, compartmentalize problems, getting to know the cofounder and have fun!

Best part about what you’ve been doing so far?
Meeting incredible people that might want to become cofounder.

Which successful entrepreneur/company inspires you and why?
MyTomorrows, because I believe they have potential of making a difference within the pharmaceutical industry.

What do you think is the most challenging part of your position?
Ego’s and different interests.

What is the best advice you have ever been given?
Listen to your own feeling.

What did you expect when you joined Holland Startup?
Coaching and financial support. I would describe Holland Startup as "Enablers". 

What are you looking for in a co-founder?
Someone that is similar to me but fulfills me in my weaknesses and vice versa. For example, I can be quite impulse and wanting to move forward too quickly. Therefore, I would like the co-founder to be more cautious.

What does no one agree on with you?
My taste in music.

How do you think your best friends would describe you?
Funny, ambitious, energetic and determined.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Pharmaceutical cultures! Simplifying the drug development process and yet enabling safe innovative drug products to enter the market with an affordable price.

Where are you from?
Oosterhesselen, tiny village in the province Drenthe 

Tell us what it was like growing up in your hometown.
Until I was twelve I lived in Oosterhesselen where I felt I had a very safe upcoming. Then I moved to Barcelona where I lived most my teenage years and developed the pillars that established the person that I am today.

What was your childhood dream job?
Becoming a researcher and finding the cure against cancer.

How would you describe yourself in three words?
Determined, funny and down to earth.

What is your favorite thing to do in Utrecht?
Sitting on the terrace with friends in the summer.

What is your top-secret advice for people in or coming to Utrecht?
When it is spring buy a floating boat and some beers. Cycle to Krommerijn, set up your boat get inside and get comfy. The current will get you to the city center.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I could live everywhere for one or two years, but in the end I would want my permanent residence to be the Netherlands, maybe in Utrecht.

What book or movie do you think everyone should read/see and why?
Unbroken, I love how determined he is and how he does not let horrific life changing experiences get him down. Instead it makes him stronger. Furthermore, what I find beautiful about the movie is that even though his life was made impossible when given the opportunity he rises above it and chooses not to be as petty.

If you could trade places with any other person for one week, famous or not, living or dead, real or fictional, with whom would it be? 
With my best friend, our lives are in many ways 180 degrees completely different and I wonder if that kind of situation would fit me.

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