Lior Elazary is a true serial entrepreneur. He sold his first business while still in school, and is now heading up a robotics startup worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Whether he intended to or not, Elazary has become a real dealmaker, building and exiting at least three companies, and is now on his fourth venture. Lior recently graced the Dealmakers podcast sharing his approach to building companies, his early entrepreneurial spirit, his methods for funding his startups, and why more founders should look forward to failure.
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Born Into Startup Nation
Lior Elazary was born in Israel. Now often dubbed ‘startup nation,a place where entrepreneurship and invention run deep. There, many innovations were and are birthed out of necessity like drip irrigation for agriculture.
From very early on Lior found that he loved creating things as well as technology and science. At a young age he had his hands on Spectrum and Commodore computers and wrote basic code for motors and little robots.
He also liked to take things apart. When his family could not afford a brand-new TV or a brand-new VCR, he bought old ones that were broken and fixed them. His friends were amazed.
During his high school years, he moved to the US. His mother was an entrepreneur, running a perfumery, and found it was much easier for a female business owner in the US.
Even once Lior was running his own multi-million startup, his mother would call him in to work at the family perfume store to wrap gifts. She didn’t get the whole internet thing.
From their time together he learned a lot about entrepreneurship. Especially about the hard work involved. He saw that his mother wasn’t just passionate about the product, but also about the business and solving problems for other people. That’s what will get you through when you are running into the daily frustrations of product and various roadblocks.
Fixing Things For Others
If there has been one consistent theme throughout Elazary’s career, it has been solving challenges for others.
Before diving into starting his own businesses he took a detour to study music in college for two years. Then driven to do something more productive with his life he switched to computer science.
Then he and his soon-to-be cofounder were fired from a PC repair store and they decided to startup something together.
The original idea for FoodMood was something like a very early version of Uber Eats. They tried to sell the concept of advertising and taking orders online, but businesses did not understand it.
That was until Caesar’s Palace saw them. They saw it as a great branding opportunity to demonstrate they were being innovative by being online. Then came Baskin Robbins and other customers.
They became engulfed in hosting these websites and email servers. That became HostPro. HostPro was bought by Micron in an all-cash deal. It was a $20 million payday for the three founders who had bootstrapped the business, all at just around 21 years old and while still juggling college classes and living at home with his mom.
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