Marathon Series: Cuponatic sets out to be the Groupon of Chile

Entrepreneurship requires a driving passion but what happens when your company is taken to the brink of bankruptcy?

Christian Real Bernouin is a Co-Founder of Cuponatic which is an e-commerce marketplace that offers different daily deals on products, services, and getaways.

In 2012, Cuponatic was faced with the prospect of bankruptcy. Now, in 2019, it is hitting $5M in revenue annually.

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Christian Real Bernouin

Christian Real Bernouin

Cuponatic

Christian Real Bernouin is a Co-Founder of Cuponatic which is an e-commerce marketplace that offers different daily deals on products, services, and getaways.

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Full Interview Transcript

Andrew: Ola, freedom fighters, [foreign language 00:00:04]. Andrew Warner coming to you directly from Chile. I flew over here to do interviews with entrepreneurs because I don’t feel like I’ve got a sense of what entrepreneurship, like especially big player entrepreneurship is like outside of the U.S. And frankly, as I look around, I notice that most people, most of the media, most podcasters don’t do it, and it’s maybe because we’ve been a little bit lazy. We’re staying at home, we’re getting comfortable in our environment, frankly I live in San Francisco.

Dude, I got to tell you, I go to my kid’s birthday parties. It is the best freaking networking you could do if you care about startups. Forget about going to meet-ups, forget about going to . . . Go to the kid parties, because the adults are out-of-their-mind bored, they’re all working on incredible companies, they’ve got stock, they’ve got inside information, and they’re so bored that they love to talk about what’s going on. You get such deep insight into what’s going on, it’s great, but it can make you a little lazy. You should bring your kids to birthday parties with me. Forget . . .

Like, if you’re ever in San Francisco, don’t say, “Andrew, can we have scotch?” Say, “Andrew, can I come to a five-year-old birthday party with you?” Let your kids play, and then just talk . . . Anyway, so we’ve gotten a little bit lazy. I came here because I want to do interviews with entrepreneurs, because I don’t want to be . . . I’m not lazy, I work hard, I want to understand exactly what’s going on here. And so one of the people that I’ve heard a lot about is a guy who in some ways competed with Groupon, like, created this deal site.

Groupon built a business, came over here in Latin America. I remember when they got to Latin America, I was living in Argentina, I could suddenly go and explore the country and get to know what’s going on because I get these deals, and then they closed up. Did they close up or they just sold the Latin America area?

Meanwhile, the guy who’s sitting next to me has got a big smile on his face because I don’t think he knows how to react. Like, am I comparing him to Groupon? Am I saying he copied it? Why are we spending so much time talking about someone else? Here’s why. Because you’re still standing, you’re doing great. I feel like there’s a part of you that’s thinking, “I can do so much better, Andrew, don’t you know the next business is going to kick ass?” Right? But this was doing well and so I wanted to find out how he did it, and I want to find out about the new business.

His name is Christian Real, or Real, as we say in America. He is the Founder . . . the Co-Founder of Cuponatic. It’s an e-commerce marketplace that offers different daily deals on products, services, and getaways, and I want to find out how he built up that business, why he’s following it up with his new company that’s a fintech company, that does something that nobody who’s listening to me will know. It’s called factoring. I know it because my dad was in the garment business in New York. God knows I know about factoring. We’ll talk about that and why he’s in that business, how well this business did, the challenges of building a company here and having a relationship, and so much else.

And we can do it thanks to two phenomenal sponsors, the first will host your website right, it’s called HostGator, and the second will help you hire phenomenal developers, it’s called Toptal.

Christian, I didn’t actually say your full last name. It’s Christian . . .

Christian: Real, which is from my father, and Bernouin, which is the last name from my mother. She’s French.

Andrew: That’s how it works here, you get . . . So your Chilean father married a French woman?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: Was born in France, or she’s like her . . .

Christian: All my mother’s family is from France.

Andrew: Got it. And the way it works in Chile is . . . Tell me about, like, this last name thing. How does that work?

Christian: Well, in Chile, yes, we have one last name from your father, the first one, and one last name from your mother, the second one. And that’s the one, you can’t choose.

Andrew: So, the second one is the final last name, but people don’t use it in conversation, it’s more like formal documents?

Christian: Yeah, you could say that, yes.

Andrew: Most people . . .

Christian: But for social media is actually useful sometimes because you don’t get repeat so much . . .

Andrew: You don’t get confused with other people who have similar names? So if you have three different names . . .

Christian: Exactly. So Gonzalez would be a very common last name, so maybe you put both.

Andrew: Got it. Cuponatic, how much revenue did it do last year, 2018?

Christian: $21 million GMV.

Andrew: Okay, what’s GMV?

Christian: Gross merchandize volume.

Andrew: Gross merchandize volume. That’s like the total amount of money that is like all the spas that people paid for at full . . . at price, whatever price you got on your list, the different stuff that’s there. How much of that do you guys get to keep bottom line, like full-on profit?

Christian: Well, the gross profit is around $5 million, and we get from that $1.000.000 EBITDA, which is actually around 5% of . . .

Andrew: $800,000?

Christian: Of gross billing, taking out the taxes.

Andrew: What do you guys do with the money? Do you split it with your investors?

Christian: So, you know, it’s a business that was very . . . most of the companies went bankrupt and, you know, Groupon closed 40 of their 50 countries I think they had. So, well, I mean, we’re doing good but actually we have losses in the past, so we are ending . . . recovering losses. So, well, now, yes, we are distributing a little bit, but we’re also investing. I mean, we bought some companies, we bought two companies in Chile. I mean, one of them from the big newspaper which we call Agrupemonos, and the other one were the Brazilians that came here, it’s called Urbania, we bought that, and we bought one big one in Peru, it’s called Ofertop, that belonged to the biggest newspaper holding in Peru. So we’re investing also.

And now we are exploring two more markets, but, I mean, we need to see that . . .

Andrew: What I saw was that Groupon Latin America was acquired by Mountain Partners. They basically said, “We’re done with this place.” You’re smiling like that why? Like a sense of triumph, or a sense of, like, what is Andrew bringing them up for? What’s your feeling? Be open with me.

Christian: No, well, you read the news, and for example, another example, it’s Linio [inaudible 00:05:34] Falabella, and people . . . I think most of the people think they were successful, but actually they invested $250 million, they were selling 170 and they were losing money. So, actually the investor lost money in total.

And Groupon is a little bit the same. I mean, they sold their operations around the world because they were not profitable and Wall Street was . . . or Nasdaq was pushing pressure on a deal [inaudible 00:06:00] revenue and profitability. And so at the end, yes, they are . . . they were in Latin America, most of the time. I mean, they’re still much bigger than us, for example they’re two or three times bigger, depending on the markets we are. We are in Peru, Mexico, Colombia, and Chile, and in this market they are bigger, but actually being bigger is not . . . I mean, in this case they were selling I think $180 million GMV, and we were selling 21, but we are making money.

And scale, you know, they promise scale all the time, most of the business, but actually sometimes it doesn’t work, you know? Is like if you start with a cost structure that it’s for gold mines, and actually your business it’s coal mine, you fail. And that’s what I think happened. And so we were betting more for the coal mine than for the gold mine, and we were more rational with the cost structure, and so that’s why I think why we made money.

Andrew: So was like . . . was the smell of pride. Like, you took a direction that seemed that was counterintuitive, that seemed wrong at a time when your competitor was so big, and you were right.

Christian: Well, we . . .

Andrew: It’s okay to be proud. I can see you’re proud.

Christian: To be honest, well, I think we were just rational, as I said. For example, marketing expenses, I mean, if you take . . . Well, everything is public now with Groupon in the U.S., and they spend 43% of their gross profit on marketing and they do not grow. Well, now I think they’re marginally, because you see of the board slides, you can see that they are calculating how much time that is taking them to recover their investment. But I think at the beginning they were not doing that, I’m convinced of that, because we were like, I mean, if I invest $1 in Facebook, how much time is it going to take me, because you can track everything, you know, online.

Andrew: That’s the way that you were thinking?

Christian: And that’s the way we were thinking.

Andrew: And you wanted it to come back faster?

Christian: No, not faster.

Andrew: No, faster than then.

Christian: Maybe two years, but what I think is not rational is not even to ask that question, and if it’s 10 years, I don’t think it’s profitable for any company in the world, so . . . And you can see that even in the salaries. I mean, when they start they were paying for Chilean standards, $3,500 net for people that were in the labor marketing earning one-third of that. So, it’s everywhere. I mean, you can see that everywhere. So, I mean, I think we were just rational and at the end it worked.

Andrew: Are you going to think I’m a jerk if I ask, did you copy Groupon? Did you see Groupon is taking off, this thing makes sense, let’s do the Groupon of Chile, and maybe the Groupon of Latin America, and then continue, and maybe we’ll sell to them? Was that the vision? Be open with me.

Christian: Yeah, sure, yes. Well, in one class in . . . We went to Colombia University for one program and I think one professor told us that innovation doesn’t exist, you know? Like, even Thomas Edison copied, like, the bulb because he bought one patent from the filament and the other patent for the glass bulb, and . . . So, I think most entrepreneurs . . . I mean, maybe it exist. For example, one guy in Chile, he’s great, he invented a filter for Crystal Lagoons, which he has a patent . . .

Andrew: For Crystal what?

Christian: Lagoons. He created . . .

Andrew: What’s a Crystal Lagoon?

Christian: Huge lagoons with crystal water, and he has the technology to do that and he patented that. And he’s really . . . I think that’s innovation. But most of entrepreneurs we copy models. That’s what Rocket Internet does, I mean, and I think today in the sense that ideas, it’s maybe 1% of the startup, you know? At the end, execution, it’s 99% of . . . that explains success of startups.

So, even with the same idea and . . . So, you need to choose a good idea. I’ve seen models that . . . For example in fintech, we were talking about that, they are not . . . I think they are the wrong model. I mean, it’s going to be hard to make money with that model. But still even in the right idea you are still very far from success, and yes, we copied Groupon to answer your question.

Andrew: Good, I’m glad to hear you be open about it. I’ve got to tell you, I talked to Andrew Mason, he was on Mixergy at its height, and one of the things that I thought was interesting was Paul Allan had a similar site, where a bunch of people would get together to buy. He studied Paul Allan’s site really intensely to understand what Paul Allan didn’t do right and what Paul Allan did right, and one of the things that he said was, “Paul Allan was trying to sell televisions, high end stuff, and that’s not the right thing for this model,” and he goes into it in the Mixergy interview, you should listen. Well, you moved on to something else, but other people should go listen, you might actually get a kick out of it.

Once you understood this makes sense, what was the first step to get this thing off the ground? To get your business off the ground?

Christian: Well, depends on any . . . on the business and all your studying. But we studied Groupon’s business model from its beginning and we saw, yes, great traction and great idea and . . . Yes. So, the first thing we figured out is that you needed to be . . . The time to market was key, so we needed to raise funds, and so we did a roadshow and we’re . . .

Andrew: So, immediately. Who’s the we? Who’s the co-founder?

Christian: Okay, we have three co-founders, so it’s Tomas Bercovich, one, is good friend of university, David Furman, which is my best friend from school. And so we start in living room with like . . . I quit my job and there were, like, McKinsey [SP] style japos [SP] everywhere around the dining room, and . . .

Andrew: And why did they give you guys money? What was it about you guys that allowed you to raise money?

Christian: Why did we raise money?

Andrew: Yeah, why did you raise money? It’s not an easy thing to do.

Christian: Yes. And in fact we had one month of sales in Chile and we start raising money to open new market, people want to be there first . . .

Andrew: I get once you had a month of sales, maybe getting the next round. But was the first batch of companies, did they come in from your . . . I mean, the first investment came in from friends of your co-founders. Was family of the co-founders? Where did it come from?

Christian: No. I mean, not friends, not friends, not family friend of course, but we use our network to roadshow and present to people we know that have money, and so we present to them the idea as privately . . . Because this time in Chile there were not many venture capital firms first of all, and venture capital firms, we don’t like their approach in general because they are too . . . I mean, they have too many conditions and they interfere sometimes.

Andrew: So then how did you raise money? Here’s the thing, I’m looking at your background, you didn’t another successful company before this, right? Look at this, I’m pointing to your LinkedIn. What was it about you or your co-founders that allowed you to get it? Or was it the idea, it was so hot at the time?

Christian: I think it’s a mix. The idea was really hot, Groupon was like rocket . . . I mean, it was really rocket that time, and so the last slide was, “Do you want to get on the rocket or stay?”

Andrew: That was the last slide of your . . .

Christian: Yeah, there was a supersonic plane taking off and so we had some graphs and . . . So, yes. I mean, we were . . . the invitation was . . . But also the team because when you get off university you have no experience, I already had experience in management and consulting and retail, my other partner he start . . . well, from the beginning he was an entrepreneur. And so we were a great team with a great idea, and I think, well, that was the mix that worked at that time, I mean.

Andrew: Andrew Mason told me he started his company on WordPress. Did you guys do something simple like that? The first version of your site, who built it?

Christian: Yes, it was really . . . Well, it was not . . . Was ugly, to be honest, but yeah, we build by ourselves. I mean, the . . .

Andrew: From scratch? It was . . .

Christian: Yes. In all the starts we have, the vision is also similar, it has to be yours, you have to be at the center of the business, you don’t ask somebody else to build it up. So, even if is not perfect, yes, we did it by ourselves.

Andrew: So you built it up, you got to open up local restaurants, or who came first? Whose job was it to get the local businesses?

Christian: Well, we have Salesforce, so the . . .

Andrew: Even in the beginning?

Christian: Well, at the beginning we were . . . even ourselves we were, I mean, finding out how to sell this, how to invite merchants to publish a deal and get . . . But was actually pretty easy and was impressive. Of course now you publish a deal and you won’t sell thousands. At this time if you had a good deal, or really was impressive how much you could sell in a single deal . . . So, it was actually impressive, what was happening, you know? Like you . . .

Andrew: It worked back then that fast?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: And so you just go to local . . . What was it? Restaurants in the beginning that you start with?

Christian: Restaurants, well, all the health and beauty, you know, salons and everything. And fitness, like, you know, sports centers or ticket movies.

Andrew: Right, because they’re natural, you go to them and you say, “I want to bring in 1,000 people to your store right now. Here’s what we’re going to do, you’re going to give it to me for half the price or some kind of deal.” It wasn’t straight up half the price. “Give it to me for a really big deal, we split the revenue.” And the revenue I think at the time was like 50-50, 50% to you, 50% to them.

Christian: Actually the argument was more on marketing. Like, you won’t be rich with this, but you will get a lot of new customers that actually could . . . can come over again and maybe they can buy something else, and . . . But now the focus change now and now it’s more sales channel. I mean, the merchants are with us, they are repeating, and they are happy because they are small-medium enterprises that they see on us a non-line channel, they do not have, you know . . .

Andrew: Just another way to get customers?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: But it’s not a way to just get a flood of them? Okay. But in the beginning you do it . . . You would call up the local merchants, and then what was your advertising strategy in the beginning? Was it all Facebook for you guys in the beginning?

Christian: Well, the beginning . . . Well, there were some organic traction. I mean, the mouth . . .

Andrew: Word of mouth?

Christian: Word of mouth was actually working, and we knew nothing about marketing. And so we even start to give gift cards on the street with . . . you know, to people. Like, writing emails and like really . . . We really try everything. We went on TV, we try . . .

Andrew: Bought ads on TV?

Christian: Huh?

Andrew: Bought ads on TV?

Christian: Yes, but not like . . . Maybe famous people. I remember in Colombia like an actress. So, we find many ways, but at the end, yes, at the end I think it was on the second year we find out . . . Well, we start with display networks, these ad networks that most of them are, you know, pirates, and we got completely screwed a couple of times. But at the end we find out that the two big ways of investing were Facebook and Google, and . . .

Andrew: Google Ads, not . . .

Christian: Google AdWords, and yes. And even today we invest $1 million per year, and yes, they go on Google and Facebook and we track everything, we measure everything, we got the ROI and so . . .

Andrew: Did you do the thing that other sites did, which is as soon as somebody comes on, they can’t get access to it until they give you their email address, and then you get their email address and you continue?

Christian: Yeah. The good thing about this model is that in marketing when you . . . Well, there are two types of marketing. Branding marketing, like brands do it on TV, and offline media is actually good for that but the performance, when . . . Performance actually most of the people use it and most of the e-commerce use it for sales. And that’s hard because most people is actually . . . the rationale is like, okay, if I recover, the margin allows me to recover what the marketing campaign cost, it’s all right. But, well, this is not very profitable, and for us, even for our customer lifetime value, we invest maybe 10% or maybe 5% of our whole budget in this kind of campaigns because they are not too profitable for us because . . . or our clients, it’s really the, like, small tickets or their customer lifetime value is small.

But what we do, our mails, because we have a great mailing . . . We are still an impulsive e-commerce. So people buy because of the deal is good, and they buy a little bit of everything. And so the email, we are for example . . . We use SendGrid, and we are the biggest sender in Latin America. We send 100 million emails per month, which is huge. You know, even big retailers don’t do that. We don’t send two emails a day.

So, our email, it is actually strong. Everybody was, like, forecasting in 2011 that email was dead and the model was going . . . Not to worry because of the email, not true. Okay? Email still works, it’s good. I mean, if you . . .

Andrew: How targeted do you . . .

Christian: If you know how to work with, because if you’re . . .

Andrew: Yeah, what do you do that’s special about email?

Christian: Well, email, it’s . . . I mean, you first need to know how to manage email databases, and so if you . . . the activity is lowering, you need to put that email out. And so there are a lot of good practices that you need to know, otherwise your email, it’s useless.

Andrew: Meaning, if somebody doesn’t open their email for a while, you have a reactivation campaign that sends an email?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: What is it . . . If someone doesn’t open their email, what can you do to get them to open it up again?

Christian: You can start to send him . . . So now we are working on personalization with AI, which is a different topic, but now for what you ask me, we have a lot of automated emails, and so yes, if you are not . . . well, if you are not opening our email, so, we try to send something really interesting so you open . . .

Andrew: Like what? What do you think gets somebody who doesn’t open it to open?

Christian: Actually, well, we try many things, but at the beginning gift cards were quite successful, but people that don’t know you, don’t want a gift card of something they don’t know. So . . .

Andrew: You mean selling a gift card for your service . . . or Cuponatic service?

Christian: For my service, yeah. So . . .

Andrew: So, $20 gift . . . $25 value for $20 to purchase the gift card, and so now it’s like free money because they could use it on your network? Got it.

Christian: Yes, that’s one strategy. The other one, which is actually great, is when we have deals of big brands like, I don’t know, Starbucks or any brand, and so we subsidize that deal, so we lose a little bit of money, we use this gift card instead of, you know, you’re able to invest $3, $4 per client, you just subsidize, so the deals become really great. So, maybe the Starbucks was 50% discount, you were making 10% commission on that, but now you are losing, but you do it for new clients to activate, to promote it. That’s another good strategy.

Andrew: We should be doing that too, we should . . . If somebody stops opening their email, stops clicking, we need to send something, we need to test until we find something that’s so amazing, that we know we get them to click. “Would you punch me in the face?” And that would be the thing. If somebody doesn’t open up the email it’s, “Watch Andrew get punched in the face.” Boom. That’s good. You’re not going to do it. You’re a lover, not a fighter.

All right, let me talk about my first sponsor and then we’re going to go back in and actually talk about your love life. You’re okay with me doing that?

Christian: Yeah, sure.

Andrew: You’re okay with it? All right. First sponsor is a company called Toptal. If you’re . . . Are you hiring developers for your new thing? For Chita?

Christian: Hiring?

Andrew: Yes.

Christian: Yes, we are.

Andrew: Where are you looking right now? Don’t be afraid to give a competitor to Toptal, no one can trash them.

Christian: Well, in Chile we use Get on Board.

Andrew: Get on Board?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: What is Get on Board? It’s a job site?

Christian: Well, it’s a website where you publish and you . . . I mean, some . . . Yes, you . . .

Andrew: So you say, “I have this job,” and people apply, and then what do you use to manage the application process? Dockabl or something?

Christian: No, we don’t . . . I mean, we have our own test, but yes, I found they recommend me one website today. But no, actually we do our own test, they do it, we send it, and the interview we comment a little bit, I mean, how do you solve it . . .

Andrew: But you don’t have a flow management software for managing your . . .

Christian: No. No we don’t.

Andrew: You should get some . . . If you’re going to do it that way, you need something like . . . Basically all these things become like Gantt charts or Trello boards where you can keep track of where people are, people can talk about potential hires behind their back so that you know how everyone is thinking. So there’s a bunch of sites like that.

Okay, I have no problem with that. What you’re doing makes absolute sense. There are tons of job words. Here’s the one thing that makes Toptal different from all those. It’s not a job board. You go and you talk to a human being at Toptal, a matcher. And you say, “Look, Andrew told me you can make my dreams come true when it comes to developers. Here’s what I’m looking for. I hear that if I have artificial intelligence in my business for my email, I could get more people to open up my email. My people are okay with it. I’d like somebody who’s done this shit before. Give me someone who’s done it before, for a site that’s coupon-based, and as a matter of fact has lots of email open rates and a success. I’m not looking to train someone, I want someone who’s done this. If you can find that goal for me, great. If you can’t, no problem. I’ve had a nice chat with you.” Give them that.

And then let them come back to you and say, “Hey, here’s the guy. Here’s the team of people even who could do this. They did this for this small company out of Asia, or they did it for a small company before that doesn’t make sense, they can do it for you.” That’s what we’re talking about. If you got . . . Oh, and no waiting for job boards, no these Trello boards, none of it. They just say, “Give us a day or two, give us a week.” Actually they probably will say, “Give us two weeks.” In reality usually it takes someone with my experience about a week. Come back to you a week later, not with a bunch of resumes, go look through. So here are the two people we think you might like. You get on a call with them. Or you have a CTO at Chita?

Christian: Well, my brother is the CEO and CTO, but yes.

Andrew: So your brother would get on a call with them and go, “All right, let’s see if Andrew actually is full of it or not.” You talk to them, and if you’re impressed, you get started. You can hire and get started with them right away. If you’re not, you go, “Guys, it’s been nice talking to you. Andrew is a nice person, this isn’t a big let-down, but I’m glad that we were able to understand this maybe in the future. Goodbye.” That’s the beauty of it.

Christian: Great service.

Andrew: Now, many people will end up hiring directly from Toptal and get started right away, brilliant, blow their minds. I’m snapping my fingers a lot, which I know that Devin, who’s behind the camera is going, “What is this? This is going to ruin the audio.”

I do gesture a lot and I bang on stuff a lot. Am I right, Devin? I bang on everything. Do you want to know what else I do? Around the house, if I do something or have a thought, there’s like a, big clap. We’re sharing rooms next to each other. Did you hear that this morning? No. Okay, good. So at least it doesn’t penetrate walls.

All right back to Toptal. If you want to get started with Toptal, they’ll give you 80 hours of Toptal developer credit when you pay for your first 80 hours. They’ll match you up with a developer or development team even that will knock you on your butt. Now all you have to do is go to toptal.com/mixergy to get it. I don’t know why I’m telling them, I should just tell you. I just need one customer, right? The return on investment would kill if one customer . . . if you go in.

So you go to toptal.com/mixergy . . . You know what would be great? Imagine, since I have such a hot profile, yes, we should go for people who just need one good sale a month, and what I do is I just tell the guest, “Don’t even run it in the ad, and then get it on a piece of paper, go call my guy in Toptal . . . I’m going a little too far. Go to toptal.com/mixergy, guys.

Once I get to doing shtick, that’s when you know it’s just . . . Got to pull it back. Shtick is like comedy from the old school.

Let’s come back to you. You saw that this was working in Chile, you said it’s time to expand it beyond Chile, you ended up going to what country next? What’s the next country that you went to?

Christian: Colombia.

Andrew: Colombia?

Christian: Mm-hmm.

Andrew: Tell me about the beautiful office space that you invited people too when you were hiring in Columbia.

Christian: Yes, we . . . everything was so rush. I mean, we raise money between September and December, in three months we raise $1 million with the PowerPoint. We have our new leaders’ party, I remember that also at David’s house with 100 people. And then January first week we were in Colombia in a McDonald’s basically, start hiring people and finding an office and doing everything from scratch.

Andrew: So, you’re sitting in McDonald’s?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: With the warp . . . No, they don’t have the warp, they have the whatever, the Big Mac. You’re having Big Macs interviewing people?

Christian: Yeah. I mean, were . . . we had no office. We were looking for an office, but we had to do everything. So, well, at the beginning, yes, and we were moving . . .

Andrew: And people took you seriously?

Christian: Yeah.

Andrew: But in Columbia they’re more conservative than that, right?

Christian: Yes. But at the beginning when you’re . . . when you just raise, like, money, you have such stamina and energy, everybody believes you. If you were able to raise money, you are on . . . Then, I mean, you need to be a little bit crazy to be a founder and raise money and . . . Yes. Well, then you need to learn a little bit, but in this time you are able to convince everybody, most people . . .

Andrew: And you were there, you had your charisma, you were at your charismatic best, right? You know what charisma is? That thing . . . Do you know what charisma is? Is there a Spanish word . . . what’s the Spanish word for charisma? It’s probably charisma.

Christian: Well, charisma, yes.

Andrew: Charisma, right? So you had that, you knew it. You were talking to people and you were like evangelizing, they couldn’t wait to work for you.

Christian: Yeah.

Andrew: You had a girlfriend at the time?

Christian: Yeah, I had a girlfriend, yes.

Andrew: And so were you equally as on fire with your girlfriend, like you were . . . you’re the best boyfriend or the most . . . When you were there on a date, were you like the most magnetic you ever were?

Christian: Well, no. Actually Europeans do not like much, they like you working so much and trying so much, and so . . . Yes. Well, the beginning is right, but yes . . .

Andrew: At first she said, “This is great. My man is going places, this is the one thing, I just got a great deal on a spa.”

Christian: Yes. But at the end, the trips, you know, like, I was traveling a lot, one week every month to each country. Then when I had three countries with Mexico, 2012, it was 36 travels per year. So, yeah, at the end it was not . . . she was not so happy about Cuponatic, you know?

Andrew: You know what? I get that. Devin and I were talking before you arrived about how fun it is to be here. Chile is so beautiful. We were just here for a day so far, and we loved it, and we’re saying, maybe we should just travel all over and just do interviews like this, get to know new people. And I feel like it’s fun at first, and then it’s such a chore. Getting on more airplanes, more hotels, right? And so I imagine when . . . Here’s where I think the relationship was damaged. You probably missed an asado with her family, or something significant like that, am I right?

Christian: Worse than that.

Andrew: Tell me, what was it?

Christian: Her sister’s wedding.

Andrew: Oh. And you knew going in you’ve got to miss the sister’s wedding?

Christian: Yeah, it was because of the Columbia University program.

Andrew: What was the Columbia University program?

Christian: Well, it’s a program for entrepreneurs, which is called ECLA, Entrepreneurship and Competitiveness for Latin America. And it’s a two-week program in New York, and then one more week in I think Israel and one more week in New York, and the rest is online, it’s for a year. But yes, it was a two-week program, was, you know, the same date as the wedding, and so I couldn’t go and that was actually . . .

Andrew: And you intentionally sacrificed? You said, “I know I’m sacrificing the wedding and I know that it’s not going to go over well with my girlfriend?”

Christian: Well, we talk about it, and I was able to sacrifice, but you know, usually with women it’s . . . even if they say okay, it’s not okay, and it was not okay at the end.

Andrew: I feel like with the right one it is. I told my wife, “I’m missing your birthday because I’ve got to work, and I need you to come and help me out.” And she did it and I think that’s a good test. I actually think you might have been on the right track there. I think what my test with my girlfriend was when . . . before we got married, we traveled, back-packed through the Balkans. I said, if she can handle it, if we can be in the same environment together, then we’re in a good place, maybe we could get married.

Christian: Good test.

Andrew: It better . . . I think that’s a good test. The other one that I would have done intentionally like that is, picked a thing that’s important to her and say, “I cannot show up for that because of work.” And if that’s like causing friction where I could see there’s an issue, it’s not right. All entrepreneurs, listen to me, you’ve got to do that test. You’re not buying that, no, because what happened to the relationship?

Christian: Well, in the end we broke up after four or three years, so . . .

Andrew: It was hard on you though?

Christian: It was hard. You know, I really sacrifice everything for this company in the beginning. It was really tough, I almost went bankrupt, I actually . . .

Andrew: I want to ask you about the bankrupt in a minute, I definitely do. I want to know why. The reason that I would sacrifice my relationship with the woman I loved for work is I grew up in New York surrounded by people who were building companies that outlasted them, and you were literally nothing in New York unless you can do something big like that. You’re just not meaningful, get out of our way.

I had to be that meaningful or I had to change my mindset. I wasn’t going to change the mindset, I had to be meaningful. What was it for you? You don’t feel like you’ve got that need. Why did you go into this relationship saying, “I’m willing to sacrifice it for this?”

Christian: Is not about need, I mean, is all about . . . I mean, entrepreneurship is not for everybody, you need to be really passionate about what you do, and it’s about creating something from scratch. And so if you do not realize the amount of energy you need for that, you are not being so . . .

Andrew: It’s just you had to see this through, you had to see it be the way that you thought it would be?

Christian: Either way would . . . I mean, if I do not think that way, maybe I don’t do nothing because is not going to work. You see, if you are not able to really go through a lot of . . . At the beginning, I mean, the real startup like we did it, like raising money from nothing, building offices from nothing, really, it requires a huge amount of energy and so you can’t . . . Like, have you seen the movie, “La La Land?”

Andrew: No.

Christian: No?

Andrew: That’s too much singing for me.

Christian: Well, it’s about musicians. And if you really if you . . . if your son want to be a musician, so the only thing you can tell him is look perfect, but you need to realize how much you need to sacrifice if you really want music to be a job that makes money for you, because if it’s going to be a hobby, is different. But if you want . . . So, is a little bit the same. I mean, you need to know what you’re doing, and yes, if you’re building a startup, you can’t, like, afford to . . . I mean, it’s really . . . it’s a strong commitment and that’s it.

Andrew: That’s it. It’s just you had to see the vision, it’s not, I didn’t have money as a child, this is my way to have money, I had no meaning as a child, this is my way to have meaning. No, is just, I’m an artist, I happen to pick this business world as my canvas, I’m not going to stop until I see the painting through. That’s it.

Christian: Yeah.

Andrew: Okay, talk about then the time when you guys nearly went bankrupt. I see you do have charisma, I see it in your eyes. When you came in here I felt like, “I don’t know, this guy looks like he’s . . . ” The energy was different. Then when I asked you some provocative questions, your charisma came out. And I don’t think it’s coming through in the audio. Even the video that we’re recording is probably not going to go anywhere because I don’t think we can capture that, but it’s in your eyes. Do you notice that? You do, right? You know when you’ve got it.

Okay, talk about the time when you were . . . when you almost lost it all, when you couldn’t . . .

Christian: Well, yeah. I did some management consulting before and some retail, and in management consulting I did some investment banking projects, and so I really calculate everything for the roadshow and how much money I needed to open Colombia and Mexico. But I missed my estimates for 20%, $200,000. So I saw that cash flow was not going to be as good as I thought, so . . .

Andrew: At Cuponatic?

Christian: At Cuponatic. And so yeah, I needed to raise money again, well, second round, not a big deal. And so we find an investor, exactly Metro International, that they bought 26% of the company in October 2012. The thing is that, well, the negotiation took like a lot more time than I expected, I think eight months, and really the last month of the negotiation, it was really we were going bankrupt.

And so it was actually pretty stressful, I mean, by . . . Well, we survived that. But that’s another proof of, I mean, maybe if you’re not committed I should have quit before, but yes, we went up to the end and . . . but it was really tough and . . .

Andrew: You couldn’t pay salaries?

Christian: That month if we didn’t close . . . we hadn’t closed the deal, yes, we went bankrupt.

Andrew: Oh, but you never missed a salary payment? It was that close?

Christian: No, we never miss it. But it was really close. Really close.

Andrew: I got the sense in talking to you before we started that this was so stressful, it took a toll on your health. Like, did you get shingles, did you get sick somehow? Do you feel like there’s damage that even happened temporarily?

Christian: Not physical, but well, you get a little bit . . . You can get a little bit depressed. I mean, after some . . . If it’s a continuous stress for a long time, I mean, yes, of course it’s a little bit, you can . . .

Andrew: But it wasn’t there for you?

Christian: Well, no, I was [inaudible 00:35:19], you know? But you have friends, you need to have a network to support you, and that’s also what your test, I think all good ideas because . . . Yeah, you need your friends and your girlfriend, then your family to know what you’re doing and . . . You know, if they understand you there, they can support you, and, well . . . And at the end when you fail, well, is no big deal, you can start again, but you really need to, I mean, push hard and do your best when . . . until, you know, the end.

Andrew: Metro, I know them, they create these newspapers that you get for free, I think in New York when you come out of the train. That’s their model.

Christian: That’s their model, yes.

Andrew: And it’s full of these news stories with advertising, and it’s ad-based.

Christian: Yes, and they belong to Kinetic [SP], which is actually our biggest holding and they invest in e-commerce. I think they . . .

Andrew: What’s their connection to you?

Christian: Well, in this time they have these daily deal business for . . . in Mexico and Chile, and they try to enter the daily deal business because before it was advertising business they were actually more e-commerce business, and they were . . . they saw it was really hard to operate and it was not on the . . . so close of their model, and so they start to find partner, and we were the perfect partner for them to get rid of that business. And also of course they delayed in the business and I think so that’s why they invested in us, but . . .

Andrew: How much money did they put in?

Christian: They put in almost $2 million.

Andrew: So if they put in $2 million for 30% of the business . . .

Christian: Twenty-six, 26%. First investor was around $1 million for 30% of the company, and the second round it’s $2 million for 26% of the company.

Andrew: Which values the company at eight million at the time?

Christian: Well, yes, eight million. Eight million.

Andrew: Roughly. Okay. And then today it’s profitable and you’re moving on. You’re not there day-to-day, the company just runs itself now.

Christian: I’m day-to-day, I’m the CEO. I’m the CEO . . .

Andrew: But how can you start this thing, Chita, on the . . . You know what, before we get into Chita on the side, let’s talk about my second sponsor, make some money for me.

Second sponsor is a company called HostGator for hosting websites. Let me ask you this. You’re a creative person, if you had to today 20 . . . no, let’s say 2019, start a new company, you got no money, like, all the money went away somehow. All you have is a HostGator hosting plan that I give you. I say, “You know what, we’ve been friends, I know you can start. I’ll pay for your hosting, you build anything you want on it.” What would you create? What’s the new thing that you would put on that canvas? I give you nothing but a hosting company, would it be another deal site that’s smaller, would it be a blog, would it be . . . What would it be?

Christian: Hard question. Well . . .

Andrew: I’ll toss out an idea. Okay, I think you’ve got nothing going on for you, a good way to make money fast from . . . not fast, but to make a significant living is doing consulting of something, something that you’re really good at. Or you can hire someone else to do it. But how do you get clients? What you would probably do is, here’s one idea, do interviews with your ideal clients. Right? So, imagine if what you want to do is maybe buy Google Ads for . . . Let’s say Google ad for e-commerce sites. For bigger Shopify stores, because maybe they’re built on Facebook and they need to diversify back to the old school Google.

I would do interviews with their ad buyers, or with their CEOs, about how they built their business, what kind of marketing they do, just marketing.

Christian: Okay, I see where you’re coming.

Andrew: And then at the end say, “By the way I’ve got a service where I can buy Google Ads for you. Everyone’s buying Facebook. Do you know Google is much bigger than Facebook but we’re all neglecting it? I can do it for you.” And you do it at the end after you’ve got some rapport. You want to have rapport, right? I’ve bullshitted with you a little bit, I got nothing to sell you. But it helps. Right, whether it’s that idea or any other idea that you’ve got, really, take it to HostGator. If you go to hostgator.com/mixergy, they’ll give you the lowest rates that they have anywhere. But frankly the rates are so low, what’s another 5% off what they already have that’s already low? Not that significant.

So why would you do that? Number one, because you’re going to be supporting Mixergy, and number two, because Mixergy is going to be supporting you. Which means if you ever have an issue with them or any sponsor, we’re here to stand behind you and make sure that things are taken care of. Well, I can’t always make sure things are getting taken care of, I don’t want to over-promise. But we’re here to make sure that your voice is heard, and god knows, people don’t want me to keep talking to them about a problem that my audience has. They will pay or do whatever it takes usually to just get me to shut up and take care of their customers.

So, if you want hosting and you want me to . . . and my team to stand behind you, go to hostgator.com/mixergy. If you hate your hosting company, switch to them too.

So then what got you to start this new business, Chita?

Christian: Why?

Andrew: Yeah. You have a company, you’re a CEO, you got a full-time job.

Christian: Well, I have two reasons, and actually . . . Well, the first reason is that e-commerce, it’s really fun as a retail for example. I mean, you have many clients, you have promotions, you have assortment. I mean, is really dynamic. I mean, is a great business and . . . But to be honest, with retail, most retailers lose money today, the other ones do not make much money, and that’s what happened with e-commerce. I mean, you see e-commerce, Amazon set the bar, they lost money for eight years, then they went with this free-shipping idea, and today is free shipping, everybody is trying to follow them, and most of e-commerce and retailers are losing money today.

So, we are more beside of the coupon business in a not-very-profitable industry. And so I said, “Well, look, if I start another company again, I’m going to take care of . . . choose an industry which is more profitable.”

And if you see banking, like at least in Chile, every banks are really profitable. I think they all earn more than 10% ROE per year, and so at the end I say, “Well, that’s an interesting . . . ” And nobody like them.

Andrew: What’s ROE? Return on . . .

Christian: On equity.

Andrew: So they get 10% return on equity . . .

Christian: At least. At least. And so it’s . . .

Andrew: And nobody likes them. Oh, so they have a big, fat margin, nobody likes them, and they’re not . . .

Christian: And they are regulated, and so since they’re . . . Because, you know, is so important for the economic system, banks and everything is regulated, and relation is actually, you know, like constrains, like, you . . . is not . . . So it breaks change, basically. And so the opportunity in fintech is huge. I mean, really you need to address it differently because you can’t at least in some verticals of fintech be the . . . I mean, not like in Cuponatic that we . . . for example we own like 70% of the company, the founders today, it’s different because you need to have depth, and so it’s harder, and so you need to partner up with financial institutions with spinoff, not inside a company but with spinoff, but it’s really attractive how . . . So I started to find business models in fintech, and I end up with this, well, factoring, online factoring business model . . .

Andrew: Here’s what factoring means. I actually remember the way that I got into factoring was I was running an online business where internet companies could not afford to pay their bills fast enough and so they were taking too long, and I wanted the money and somebody said to me factoring, and I remembered my dad kind of talking about it a little bit, and what I understood was I went to this dude’s office in some random place in Manhattan, and he said for every $100,000 that I have owed to me by these internet companies, he’ll give me like $70,000, but he’ll give it to me tomorrow. And if you’re starving for cash, that’s a good way to do it, and then let him go be the jerk who goes and pursues your customers, right?

Christian: Yes

Andrew: Because I don’t want to be the jerk, I want to be the guy who takes care of you. And that was it. And I thought, “All right, 70 cents on the dollar is not worth it for me, I can wait,” and I waited out and I got my money back. But that’s the model.

Christian: That’s the model, that the opportunity . . . Well, we are focused on small and medium companies, so . . . and we’re doing really low tickets. So, what happens is that most of the factoring companies in Chile, they don’t do this ticket, they do not have the cost structure to serve these clients because they are too small. So, we’re addressing a very small but huge amount of clients. I think there are 900,000 small companies in Chile.

Andrew: What size invoices would they have that are outstanding?

Christian: We do $15 invoice.

Andrew: For what?

Christian: I mean, we take any invoice.

Andrew: Well, why would somebody get an invoice for $15? Why wouldn’t they just pay for it upfront?

Christian: I mean, most . . . Almost every small and medium company has cash flow, has working capital issues. So, yes. And they do not have access to capital.

Andrew: But no-no, I get it. But give me an example of a business that would give someone $15 worth of something on credit?

Christian: They don’t give you one invoice, they give you many. So, the operation, the operation, maybe they give you . . . Right now we have $2,000 amount, but it’s in a lot of invoices. And so there is also the side of . . . Some, they are lending because it’s lending at the end, you also get the service that you don’t need to collect that money. Okay? So, that’s another . . .

Andrew: So wait, if I understand you right, maybe an example of this would be someone who does laundry for restaurants, and maybe they’re washing something for $15, is that a good example of a business that would be one of your clients?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: So, every time that they’re washing the chef’s jacket, it’s $15, and it’s on credit because the restaurant is not giving them a credit card, and then they come to you and they say, “We’ve got a bunch of jackets that we clean for them, $15 per, give me money upfront.” Am I right?

Christian: Yeah. And I bought maybe $100 invoice from them, I give them the cash immediately, and then I do the collections for . . . You know, and so that’s another value added.

Andrew: And your cash . . . Right, because nobody wants to be knocking on your customer’s door with anything except service and [inaudible 00:45:32], right? It’s hard one day to say, “Hey, pay up fast,” and then the next day say, “Hey, you should buy more from me.” Right?

Christian: Yes. Versus saying, “Oh, those guys, they own the credit, I don’t know what to do. They’re little jerks, I know I understand it, I’m sorry.” Right? “I’m sorry for their being so aggressive.” Why did that make you feel uncomfortable that I said that? Because you guys don’t want to be called jerks, that’s what . . .

Andrew: No. Well, I mean, the financial institutions that finance this kind of invoice, they charge, you know, 4% per month, because also it’s a pain, you know, to collect all that money. So, we lower the rates a lot, we are charging 1% per month in advance, plus some fees, but at the end we are much cheaper, we are 100% [inaudible 00:46:15], you know, we take any kind of invoice, and we are really, really fast, you know, because of technology, because . . . So that’s the differential that we are seeing, that we are able . . .

For example, our partner in Chile, it’s the non-banking biggest factoring in Chile. They own 9% of market share of . . .

Andrew: Nine percent? Okay.

Christian: Nine percent, which is huge. And for example, yes, they operate . . . I think we have 1% stock money of what they have, but we have 20% invoice, the number of invoice that they have. So, and we are able . . . With us we are a team of 20 people, to collect 20% of, you know, the little we have, but with a lot less, and that’s because of technology. We really crack out the problem of really . . . of financing thousands of companies every month, and collecting all that money every month. And so we really have this machine that at the beginning we almost went bankrupt, again, because also one thing we do which his really hard, is that you need to assess risk and put correct price on it, that’s typical from the lending business. But in such amounts that it’s so hard to know, you know, this small company has a small invoice for this, all . . . another small company, how . . . So, difference so hard that you get you get also people that does fraud. And so they invent invoices, and at the beginning we lost half of our equity in fraud, you know? And so that’s another issue.

Andrew: And how do you stop fraud?

Christian: Fraud, it’s people that . . .

Andrew: No, I get it. How do you stop it?

Christian: You stop it because the model behind the platform, we start to put some rules and we start to learn, and so now we filter . . .

Andrew: What’s an example of a filter that you put in that’s obvious that . . .

Christian: For example, yes, the people that does fraud, or most of the company, they have digital offices, they call, they don’t have a physical office. I mean, so if they had an address, and so this address there is nobody. And so that’s the thing. All the company . . . The companies that have many . . . I don’t know how you say it in English, but when you put a company in Chile, you need to choose, I mean, what you’re going to do. Sell . . . I don’t know . . .

Andrew: Oh, and they do too many things?

Christian: Too many things. So, they do too many things, so they use the same vehicle to do fraud, one and one. So you start to filter that and so that’s one thing, and of course . . . But at the end . . . And so we’re doing good, we are profitable in the second year and we’re growing in three digits every year, but we’re still on a linear growth and we’re trying to cracking how to get to these 900,000 companies in Chile, and I think we’re going to make it because we have a project that we call Uber Chita, and if this project is successful, I think we’re going to be really exponential and . . .

Andrew: What’s Uber Chita?

Christian: It’s a commercial project we have, that we are trying to crack how to reach all these companies, because . . .

Andrew: Yeah, how? What do you think is going to work?

Christian: How I know it’s going to work?

Andrew: No, what do you think is going to work? What do you think is going to let you grow that first?

Christian: Because, we are doing . . . we have . . . today we have done 1,000 clients, 1,500 clients, companies, and there are still 900,000 of them . . .

Andrew: No, I know, what’s . . . what are you going to do to get the rest? What’s the special thing that you’re going to do?

Christian: We are working on it.

Andrew: Oh, you’re looking for the thing that’s going to?

Christian: I mean, I don’t but it’s not working still, so I don’t want to tell you, but if it works, we’re really . . . we are going to be able to reach all these clients and we have the product and the machine, and so we can scale and I think this is going to be, one, really successful.

Andrew: Let me ask a couple rapid fire questions, just to understand. Factoring doesn’t work for you the way that it did, that I described. I described getting paid 70 cents on the dollar immediately, then it’s their job to go get collect and they get to keep 100%. The way it works with you is different, it’s a percent per month. You do the collection for them and . . .

Christian: No, it’s a percent per month, which is calculated immediately, because you show me my invoice, they going to pay me in 90 days. So you calculate how much . . . At the end I buy your invoice . . .

Andrew: And you give me the money upfront?

Christian: Upfront, yes. Okay? And I do the collect, bank your accountables for your . . . So, if the guy doesn’t pay us, you’re accountable. But I do the collection for you.

Andrew: But you come to me if in 120 days or a year, at some point they don’t, you come back to me?

Christian: They don’t pay, you’re accountable.

Andrew: And if they pay earlier?

Christian: If they pay earlier, you get your . . . We do it, so . . . It’s hard because there’s a lot of cheating in factoring, and most factoring companies, some of them, they try to collect a late, so you get more interest on the . . . You know?

Andrew: Yeah.

Christian: And so we don’t do that, but in general you do not collect earlier.

Andrew: It just doesn’t happen?

Christian: No, because you need to go [inaudible 00:51:27]

Andrew: I thought I read on your website that they get some of the money back if you do collect earlier.

Christian: Yes, we do it.

Andrew: You give it to the customer?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: And say, you know, we anticipated three months, so we’ll charge you 3%, it turns out . . .

Christian: Yes, we always . . . That’s another trick of most factoring that do. You never finance the 100% invoice, you finance 80%, and you keep this 20% in guarantee in case the guy doesn’t pay and so you can charge them more interest in that case. And so most of them, they keep that 20% unless you ask for that. Now, we do it automatically. I mean, once we collect, we pay you and so we try to be transparent and fair and . . .

Andrew: You’re in a relationship now?

Christian: Yeah, I’m married, I have two kids.

Andrew: Are you ready to say to the . . . Will your wife tolerate if you start traveling around to put this in other states? In other countries?

Christian: No, I don’t think so. That’s why this company is going to stay in Chile.

Andrew: It’s got to stay as a Chilean company. If there are 900 companies here that could be your clients, you might as well stay there.

Christian: Yes, it’s a big enough market for now.

Andrew: That shirt, is that the shirt that you were talking about? That pattern? Devin?

Devin: I was saying that a lot of the patterns on clothes are very . . . it’s very loud here. There’s a lot going on . . .

Andrew: Oh, okay. I thought you saw this pattern shirt. I can’t stop looking at your shirt. It’s not loud, it’s just . . .

Devin: It’s just a little more brief stuff happening, like things are . . . you know, it’s . . .

Andrew: He’s saying that we’re plain, but . . . I hope people can hear it, Devin saying we’re plain here, you guys.

Christian: It’s a map actually, it’s an architect, architect map.

Andrew: All right. So here’s what I learned from you today. Number one, totally fine to copy, even still to this day. Number two, I feel like if you’re in a hot market obviously you can raise money fast, but you can’t lose your cool, you can’t get carried away with it, right? That the reason that you outlasted even Groupon was you said, “I’m going to be rational, I’m still going to spend money with the expectation I’m going to do it.” Unless . . . and we talked about friends and people around here who intentionally said, “Screw it, I’m going all in, I’m going to invest everything, we’re either going to sell and do great, or we’re going to collapse.” But if you want a business that lasts, you’ve got to think rationally and not get carried away by the competition. Am I right?

Christian: Yes. The other one too there, I do not believe in exits.

Andrew: You don’t believe in exits?

Christian: Founders that build companies for exits, it’s different game, which is closer from the casino, than from being an entrepreneur. You need to be honest and at some point think your business is going to be profitable. And I think most . . . a lot of founders are playing the casino game. So I don’t play that game.

Andrew: All right. And . . .

Christian: Or the IPO, the same. IPOs are the same.

Andrew: What’s another lesson that I should take away from you? What’s one last thing that you want me make sure that I remember? Here’s what I would say. Look for businesses that are unsexy but profitable. Right?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: Like this whole e-commerce thing, it does look like it’s very sexy. It is a lot of fun, your friends and family could get, like, spa deals from you, and they could talk to you about it. Nobody even knows what the hell factoring is, even me, and as I explained it, I didn’t get it fully right. But it’s so annoying and so boring that it’s ready for a little bit of a facelift.

And number three, you couldn’t create your own business to do this, you had to partner with one of the existing ones, give them equity in your company to get all the advantages that they have from the regulation and the money point of view? Right? And the credibility?

Christian: Yes.

Andrew: I think I’ve got it. Do you think somebody is listening to us right now who is in Mexico City going, “Factoring, of course, why am I copying Americans? I should be copying Chileans.”

Christian: I think yes, they are, in Mexico.

Andrew: Saying, “We should be factoring there.”

Christian: Yes, that’s a great word point, yes.

Andrew: Does that bother you a little bit?

Christian: No, I . . . The opposite, I’m happy . . .

Andrew: That they’re doing it?

Christian: Yes, they need to execute.

Andrew: All right. Well, thanks so much for doing this. For anyone who wants to go check out your website, it’s Chita . . . And Chita is spelled, like, the natural way, not the way that we do in America, like, C-H-E-E-T-A . . . What is that? Just Chita, C-H-I-T-A, Chita. There’s only one way to pronounce it. I love reading in Spanish.

Christian: Same animal, the different spelling in Spanish.

Andrew: Is different spelling, and is that C-L, right?

Christian: Is the fastest animal on earth.

Andrew: And why do you want the fastest animal on earth to be your mascot?

Christian: Because our main differentiation is being fast. We give you money in two hours.

Andrew: In two hours, yeah, I saw that. Look at this, I got your whole website translated into English, and it even says, “Try now without compromises.” Boom, I hit that button and I get to go. And get my money.

All right, if you want to check out the coupon site, first of all, move to Chile, right? Or Latin America, and then you go to Cuponatic. Again, no C-O-U in coup . . . Just C-U-P-O-N-A-T-I-C. I don’t even know I’m spelling this for people, because frankly, they’re not going, number one, and number two, it’s going to be on the show notes, they just swipe up or tap on the cover art and they get this.

Finally, how am I doing? I feel like this was really good for a while, and at some point I became a little overbearing. Overbearing is like a too much, Andrew, don’t you think?

Christian: No, it’s good.

Andrew: It’s okay. All right. Finally, I want to thank the two sponsors . . . I just shut my iPad. The two sponsors who made this interview happen. Honestly, thank you guys for supporting me for so long. It is Toptal for hiring developers. Check them out at toptal.com/mixergy, and HostGator for hosting websites. It’s hostgator.com/mixergy.

And finally, this is part of my series of interviews where I fly around the world to do interviews with entrepreneurs, and if you want to see as I do all this, go check out Run With Andrew. Running is a big part of this. Literally running. Run the Santiago Marathon. Check out runwithandrew.com.

Thanks so much for doing this.

Christian: Great, Andrew, thank you.

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