Interview with Lou Gray: An entrepreneur, an investor and an investigator of new ideas

Lou Gray is an entrepreneur by all means. He has experience in startups, team building, operations, and holds a few patents. His latest venture is co-founding SEC Live, which he describes as follows: “the modern way to work with SEC Filings. Still reading SEC filings in HTML, PDF, or Word? Still manually inputting company financials in Excel? It’s time to upgrade to SEC Live.

Previously, Lou co-founded DreamBox Learning–a consumer software company pioneering adaptive, personalized, data-driven math instruction over the Web. He studied from Columbia University School of Law, The Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, The Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Emory University.
His skills and interests include mergers & acquisitions, strategic partnerships, business strategy, new business development, negotiations, team building, big data applications, mentoring/coaching, mobile, corporate governance, angel investing, venture capital, and private equity.

We present an email interview with Lou

Q1. How do you feel entrepreneurship has opened new vistas for innovation around the world?

Entrepreneurship is the seed of opportunity, innovation is its the water, capital is its fertilizer, location is its soil, and execution is its air. For a long time, capital, and location to capital mattered greatly. Today, however, the cost of creating many new ventures has dropped significantly and the location of great teams can be federated, thereby opening entrepreneurship opportunities worldwide. With all this said, success usually comes down to team execution.

Q2. What 3-4 things an entrepreneur should take care of in his journey?

Know how to build great teams, mitigating knowable risks (research competitors, IP landscape, marketplace, customer needs), and focus maniacally on execution

Q3. How you feel being an entrepreneur has helped you?

It gives me freedom to be creative and the drive to succeed where others haven’t.

Q4. Should young professionals choose entrepreneurship over company jobs?

It is often best to first learn on someone else’s money how (and how not) to do things. It’s equally important to have enough capital reserves to subsidize your entrepreneurial journey w/o putting yourself and family at too much risk.

Q5. Any advice for a budding entrepreneur?

Be willful but not stubborn. This means you should actively try and kill an idea before you embrace it. If it won’t die, then figure out a way to do it!

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