Kati Ernst Ooia



How to bootstrap a

consumer product company?

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Everybody tells you

“you should raise funding as a startup!”

But is it true?

Is this the only way?

Well, it’s not.

And actually there are many cases where raising funding is actually a really bad idea and bootstrapping your startup would be much smarter. 

But how do you bootstrap your startup?

Today, I’m talking to Kati Ernst, co-founder and CEO of Ooia. They sell innovative consumer products for the needs of women. 

They’ve ENTIRELY BOOTSTRAPPED the company they started two and a half years ago, and they already have

🚀 more than 100,000 customers

🚀 several million euros of revenue.

So we can say they grew very fast.

They also have an exceptional company culture, completely flexible: they work without working hours and both co-founders are also parents combining entrepreneurship and raising children. 

Kati shared a list of Do’s and Don’ts about 

 💡  “How to bootstrap a consumer product company” 💡 

and in particular we talked about:

✅ finding alternative financing options than the classic investor road

✅ taking bold decisions while bootstrapping

✅ growing an audience organically with storytelling 

✅ Preparing a successful crowdfunding campaign without paid PR 

✅ choosing the right business model for bootstrapping

So fasten your seat belt and be ready to learn a lot! 


Kati and Ooia: 

Resources and recommendations from the episode



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Why I (really) created this podcast

We are at a critical period for our planet and its inhabitants, and entrepreneurs and companies are going to play a massive influence on our future. 

As always, there are two sides who can pull us in opposite directions. 

On one side, there are entrepreneurs who chase and base their decisions on money, success, and fame. 

On the other side, I believe there are entrepreneurs who truly care about making a positive difference on this world. Money is a mean and not an end to these entrepreneurs: they care about their Mission First, and their goal is not fame nor a quick exit for the sake of it. I call them Entrepreneurs for Future

I want to do my best to support these Entrepreneurs for future. 

On one hand, I do that with my company GT Impact, with which I help mission-driven companies scale up with digital marketing and growth hacking. 

On the other hand, I wanted to start this podcast because I believe the best way to learn is by getting advice from those who have already done what we want to achieve

Finally, maybe a secret reason for me to create this podcast: because it is a real pleasure and inspiration to meet and learn from these entrepreneurs. 

I have indeed been an entrepreneur myself since I am a teenager, always launching projects based on my passions. 

Music, for example, has guided me through my whole life. At 20 I started a non-profit organization to run techno music festivals in Belgium, where I was djing myself, then a few years ago I co-founded my first startup in Berlin, a music tech startup called Feelthebeat (Soundbrenner now). Currently I still do music with my indie folk pop band Lapwings

Preserving nature and its wild animals have also always been one of my passions: I have been mesmerized by the beauty of the wild orang-utans I have followed in Sumatra, or by the wild dolphins I had the chance to swim with in the Golf of Mexico. 

As an entrepreneur, I have bigger plans for GT Impact than “just” making it a great digital marketing agency for mission-driven startups, and secretly, this podcast helps me to learn and prepare the future…but shhh, that will be for another episode 😉  



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