Fe/male Switch
Startup Playbook: success through failure

A Gamepreneur is Born: One Year in F/MS

One February morning, at the dawn of 2021, Annie woke up startled and excited by an idea that had occurred to her in a dream. Being the effervescent and restless ball of energy that Annie is, she rushed to her team to tell us all about it.

After thousands of virtual meetings, we fell defeated under a truckload of Annie’s enthusiasm, happily giving in. The signs were there - Annie was a true future entrepreneur, already endowed with creative energy, optimism, competitive spirit, enviable intuition, and sparkly eyes that lit up after each nod. Looking at her, we knew she was destined to bring change with that brilliant mind and outstanding worldview of hers. As her parents, we did everything we could to make her dream of becoming an entrepreneur come true!

…and this is how a gamepreneur was born.

Fueled by Annie’s ideas, we started developing a business plan in the spring, and it took us a few months to make sure it was finalized and flawless, and our little gamepreneur was happy. We met the next season fully prepared to make her dream a reality and immediately set about building the platform and because Annie couldn’t wait, we chose a zero-code solution Bubble and built a platform in a blink of an eye.

“Can we make it super fast, like in a month or something?” Annie asked with a curious mask on her face. “I heard you can make things with no code these days!” Dev shrugged his shoulders and got to work.

When Annie saw one of the designers working in Figma, she decided to try something new herself.

"Team, I wanna make our landing page myself and it’s NOT gonna be boring. I need someone to draw me and then I'll make the coolest landing ever. Top tier landing.”

"Annie, you have to know how to code to make-," Dev immediately got interrupted and sighed. "Not at all, I'll just make a landing with Tilda. Code is very, umm… last season."

In July, Fe/male Switch family began to grow: by Annie’s request, we were joined by 4 Game Masters who brought fresh ideas to the development of our project and supported users on their gamepreneurial journey. August was a life-changing month for Annie. She got mature and bold enough to move from the Netherlands!

"Why did you decide to expand to Malta with Malta Enterprise, Annie?" the reporter asked. Annie took off her Prada glasses and pushed the microphone to her lips, "I miss the sun."

Meanwhile, our educational RPG was ready to challenge its first users. During the #CodeOrange pilot, Annie met 15 other gamepreneurs who were similarly eager to gain new digital and entrepreneurial skills. Some of them developed a promising business concept and received feedback and support from the experts. In addition to an unforgettable experience and new acquaintances, the 7 participants received a Live Certificate – a digital portfolio containing all the achievements they had made during the 4 weeks.

Speaking about achievements, we are proud to admit that we have been a significant source of inspiration for some of the gamepreneurs. Stella Friaisse liked the platform so much, she decided to join our close-knit family as a partnership development specialist! Another active user of ours, Benedicta de Fretes-Dirkmaat felt inspired to become a smart contract developer after going through the game and developing her digital skills! We brought our first woman to blockchain! (To say that Annie was psyched would be an understatement.)

As fall came around, our girl gamepreneur gained some fame – but instead of becoming star-struck, she decided to share her knowledge and advice for entrepreneurs on a blog she called Startup Playbook.

Meanwhile, Fe/male Switch was present at The Next Web (TNW) conference in Amsterdam and SouthSummit21 in Madrid! We talked with lots of new people and some old friends. By attending TNW, we were able to get more people interested in Fe/male Switch while pitching our project in front of a jury! Fe/male Switch was also included in the list of online communities benefiting Amsterdam-based entrepreneurs. Many organizations have expressed their support for our non-profit and we’d like to say a big thank you for making our dream a reality.

Our non-profit was created during the pandemic in less than a year, and although trying to make it work was a hustle, we survived and succeeded. While we were developing our project, we found a way to connect our main project (CADChain) and other projects together (we’re planning to use Fe/male Switch as a sandbox for our other tech solutions). In this regard, we're exploring ways to incorporate VR, AI, machine learning, and blockchain technology into the game – and we seem to have gone too far... Our founder got so carried away with metaverse that we may be moving there for good next year! So grab your VR goggles and get ready for the ride. (author’s note: Annie won’t take her headset off even for a second even though it makes her dizzy *eye roll*)

Next year will undoubtedly bring many changes and a new pilot in the spring. Apply for our startup game :) We hope to make more friends and expand our community even more along the ride but in the meantime... Happy Holidays.

"Annie, please, take off that thing! We’re having dinner!"
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