Welcome to Remote Start Podcast!
Feb. 3, 2023

E40: Boost Your Business Security with Haseeb Awan

In this episode, we dive into the importance of connecting with your community while keeping your security top of mind. Our guest Haseeb Awan, owner of Efani Secure Mobile and a cybersecurity expert, joins us to discuss the crucial topic of cybersecurity for... See show notes at: https://www.remotestartpodcast.com/e40-boost-your-business-security-with-haseeb-awan/#show-notes

In this episode, we dive into the importance of connecting with your community while keeping your security top of mind. Our guest Haseeb Awan, owner of Efani Secure Mobile and a cybersecurity expert, joins us to discuss the crucial topic of cybersecurity for business owners. Haseeb, who has been featured in major publications like New York Times, TechCrunch, Wall Street Journal, and Hulu, brings his expertise and insights on securing mobile devices for ultra high net worth individuals. He also shares his thoughts on bootstrapping versus venture backing a business. Don't miss this informative episode filled with valuable insights from a seasoned entrepreneur. Tune in now to take your business security to the next level!

Learn more about Haseeb Awan at:

Website: https://www.efani.com/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/haseebawan/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/haseeb

Learn more about Remote Start Podcast at: https://www.remotestartpodcast.com/


Jim: What is up Remote Start Nation, let's get something started. I'm Jim Doyon and I wanna welcome you to another episode of Remote Start. Remote Start Nation, on this episode, we're gonna be talking about connecting with your community, but making sure you are secure when doing so. We'll be covering the topic of cybersecurity and then we're also gonna be touching on subjects like venture back business versus bootstrapping. And to do so, I'm bringing in Haseeb Awan. He's the owner of a Efani Secure Mobile, a company that works with ultra high net worth individuals on their mobile security. Haseeb has also been featured on New York Times, TechCrunch, Wall Street Journal, and Hulu, just to name a few. This isn't his first business. Haseeb has also previously co-founded one of the largest Bitcoin ATM networks. We hear a lot of cybersecurity, we hear a lot about attacks, but is this something that as business owners we're giving enough attention? I know for me, I think it's something I can work on more, but let's find out from Haseeb himself and see what's right for you. So with that said, Haseeb, welcome to the Remote Start Podcast.

Haseeb: Thank you Jim, for having me on the show.

Jim: Yeah, absolutely. I'm excited to have you. We haven't talked about cybersecurity on the podcast before, and not to mention, I'm really excited to talk to you about your business journey and learn a lot from you on, you know, bootstrapping versus also, you know, getting funding and everything else that comes with building a brand. So, with that said, tell us more about what you do and how you got started on your journey.

Haseeb: So as you mentioned the topic, we provide secure cell phone services to ultra high net for individual and people sensitive information like celebrities, moist stores, you know, like athletes. So we work with, we are mobile providers. They don't walk into stores randomly, they don't walk into Verizon stores and say, I wanna have a connection. They come to companies like us and we basically take care of the mobile security, their needs are different, their risk profile are different, and that's all we do. The reason I got started was because I'm an ordinary person, but my cell phone was hacked four times and I realized that whenever you go into a store, they have absolutely no idea that what this person needs are, you know, it's like,think about like, you know, you have a specific, you go to like general practitioner for all kind of your health issues, same doctor for everything. You have specialists for that, so we are specialists informed by security. You know, we are not a pharmacist, right? Like, you know, we basically do a lot of people ‘causewe know what their risk profile is and what there is no service that caters those communities so they either have to figure out everything by themselves, but we said, why don't we just take care of something that is in your pocket, which is a cell phone. So we become a specialized in that and we don't deal with a lot of clients.We don't, with a very niche clients. And we just make sure that they never get hack.

Jim: And so with that said how, like, let's jump right into cybersecurity and cell phone. So how did you get hacked four times?

Haseeb: So if you, Jim, like, you know, if you have Verizon, just to give example, I'm just picking up a random number. The person in the store, he has access to everything that you have, he can access your call log, he can change your plan, so I'm just giving a random example of sim topic, which is a very common attack. I say, man, Jim, I can probably get your name online, I can find out how you look like, and I can make a fake ID or what I can do is I can do a social engineering and call them, someone in the store and say, I lost my phone, can you transfer the SIM card to a new phone, right? And what they will do is they'll transfer a sim card to me, so they'll issue me a new sim card, it's either through social engineering, but also through Bries. People in the store get Bries, so they will post online or create list that, Hey, I want to, if you want someone telephone record, I'll sell it to you, but they'll charge like anywhere between $200 to $2,000. So if I say I need access to your call record, I can actually pay someone, get her a call record, you know? Yeah. And, but more than that, what happened is that I can actually say, transfer this number to me. So they will transfer the same card to me and they'll say, oh, Jim walked into a store, or Jim called me up, or whatever that or, And I just gave him, I just transferred the name 'cause he says Everything is, everything checks out. So what happened if you lose your phone, you just call them up. You say, what's your mother maiden name or what's your date of birth? What's your, the fourth security number, this random thing, right? You can find that information anywhere and they transfer the phone. The next step I do is actually go into your email account and do a password reset, ‘cause that's connect to your telephone number. Once I connect there, then I get into email account. So we have a software running. People have software running. They get in your account, they see which account, which bank account you have, and based on those bank accounts, they will actually just, uh, drain your account. They'll throw everything in your account within minutes and before you wake up in the morning, everything is gone from your account ‘cause they will unauthorized transfer, and then they will take all your business secrets and then they try to extract money from you in the future. So if you talk to anyone, they will just say all, just release everything that you have, right? So you can't even go to the law authority, legal, and sometimes they just blackmail you ‘cause they found something on you. They'll say, ah, if you don't do that, I'll just blackmail you. So that's what we protect agains, so that was a risk that happened to me full-time, luckily I was, they didn't get into a lot of stuff, but they took away my sleep because I wasn't able to sleep because like, think about it, and I say this to everyone, you imagine you leave your house and when you come back, there's a note on your desk, I was here, scary. And it happens scary, right? So it was happening the same, my cell phone, right? My cell phone will get disappear every few months. And they were not but they were trying to hack me to my auto account. So it's very difficult there. Even if you get like a password reset attempt every day, you know, it's very difficult for you to sleep 'cause no, someone's trying to hack you, you know? So this was in my, so I said let's fix this problem for myself. I realized this is a problem for a lot of people and since then we've been growing so far.

Jim: So what was the first step in starting your business when you said, okay, I want to, I wanna create this for myself so I don't get hacked anymore. There's a business out there that a lot of people need this and they don't realize it. What were some of the first things that you did to start this business?

Haseeb: So, first of all, do you have interest in this? Right? Because this is what, what does it do? So I did it for myself person. I was the user number one, but my main question was that, is there a need for that? You know, would people pay for it? Cause a lot of people, Americans are nice. So the come to Jim this, they said, this is the best idea, you know, everyone wants it. And I said, Jim, would you pay for it? Oh no, you know, I will not be able to pay for it, you know, so you have a lot of friends who would encourage you, but it's, there's a very famous score you can make your clients friend faster than you can make your friends, your clients, you know, people will say, man, yeah, the people will say, people at your dinner table will support you, they'll be there when you author barbecue, but when you ask for business, they will disappear, you know? So I have people would you like to pay for it?


And if yes, I have you have to pay online. And so start, a lot of people start paying for it. So in the first week, I think we got like a seven, eight clients who said, wanna pay for it. And then one guy got hacked, pretty famous guy, and he reached out to me that my cell phone got hacked. It was, I think middle of the night, like maybe two o'clock, something like that. So I was able to get the number back from the hacker. And so he says, so Hacker was trying to, and that's where I said there's a need for it. So he said, thank you for saving my life. I realized this is a big problem. So I put my number in my profile online and I said, if anyone get hacked, call me up. So I started getting calls randomly and yeah, that's how we start, get started. And I said like we were able to, we got lucky in a way that we were able to get client faster. So we don't explain people, we just say, Hey, Jim, on a scale of one to 10, how concerned are you about mobile security? Right. So I just wanna ask you like random, just so people can understand how to validate a business.

Jim: Yeah. I mean, before I would say I'm, it's up there like, I mean, it's internet security, security to me, my phone, like, it's definitely up there on you know, close to a 10.

Haseeb: Yeah, close to a 10. Okay. So, if it's close to 10, how much are you willing to pay on top of your current search plan for you to set to, for yourself to, right.

Jim: It's a, yeah, it's a good question.

Haseeb: Right? Yeah. So I just wanna ask like, you know, because this is very useful for, in a business because a lot of times we don't ask questions, you know? And so I ask people and they will say, someone say, okay, I'll pay $0‘cause I believe myself and company should protect me. I said that's like, you know, you never get a, you never lock your car cause you be, your cops will protect you, right? or you don't do anything because ibid everyone. So these were the things that were really critical for me. And then third thing is, if it's $25, just to examine how soon are you going to take an action if I come with a solution, right? Is this something you would write right away? Is something that you would have to ask your spouse is something that you have to ask your, like, you know, uncle, you know, is it something that you have to do? So based on that, we basically start like three qualification questions and these are very helpful to me 'cause I was able to find out, okay, if you're willing to move right now, this is a credit card, like, can you pay right now? You know, cause if don't wanna pay right now, then this means that I don't have the product that they, you know.

Jim: So in that exercise and going through and asking these questions, is that when you, from a branding perspective and trying to figure out your perfect customer, is that when you started to go after ultra high net worth individuals as your perfect customer?

Haseeb: Yeah, because I believe they're number one, so you always think about like, you know, I said, if you wanna be cheaper, you have to be cheaper than Walmart, right? If you can't be, be at Walmart and Costco. You cannot make money, you know, and they will beat you out. Like that's a difficult, so what we said was, companies tell you one thing, if you go for average plan, they'll give you, I'll give you, a cheaper plan. The only thing they, I'll give you a iPhone. I'll give you this thing, I'll give you Netflix, right? So I said, what if person, we don't have to compete on that game, this is not the level frame. We said, we'll give you one thing that's security, because when I was looking for a solution, I was looking for security. That's it. You know, so a network, they have money, they're at risk, and I had a lot of friends who were at ultra high networks 'cause I was in crypto. So that made a lot of sense for me to be in that market. And then we said that, Hey man, we are not for everyone, like, you know, if you go after everyone, we'll just fail. So like, I'll give you example, we are offering a product, our lawyers. So we say we are only offered to merger and acquisition lawyers in Florida not anyone else at all, so first of our criteria, this is a emerging acquisition lawyer and they lived in Florida, we asked them these three questions and then we will probably refer 50 people. And then based on that, we'll just see if this product works or not.

Jim: So a lot of it is first doing that research, really inching in on the customer persona and then asking the right questions so then you could come to the market, correct?

Haseeb: Correct. Because we asked them, Hey, like, you know, like, we have a product like, you know, what would be your biggest challenge? So it's a very common challenge that you may say, Jim, I don't know you right? I don't trust you. I trust Verizon rather than it been for long enough. I don't trust you, shouldn't be around for tomorrow. Your business may shut down tomorrow, that's a valid concern, right? And why should I trust you? You know, it could be, Hey, I don't have a problem right now. So there's could be a lot of people. The only time that you have to take someone serious when they pay you, you know, until they have to take off their credit card. Before that, it's like window shopping, you know, so, people do, it's like tark kicking and you know, you don't get real research. So if you do a research, 50 people and obviously there's some connection there. So you say, Hey man, if I don't deliver what I said, I'll give you a money back. So I'm not even a fan of trial accounts, like on a company, we don't give trial account, we just say, Hey man, if you don't like you, we'll give you money back after 60 days. And we have, so if you don't trust, like, you know, if you weren't, you have six months to do a chargeback, right? I'll write down, you can do chargeback anytime, and if you don't like the service, you know, what's the worst thing? This is my personal number, take it and I'll be there. So it has a certain bit of personal cloud as well, but ultimately, you know what, what happened is that just keep on building your brand and we just say we are not for you. If I come to your gym, you're not for us, like, you know, do you fit in portfolio. Welcome, come to say, Hey, we deal with gyms and X, Y, Z area who works in branding? That's all we do. The more you can connect with people and more closer you are, people wanna go to that. And a lot of people say that, Hey man you, why should I trust, trust Verizon? And I said, do you when you're too small? I said, no, we are not to be exclusive, we're not small, we're exclusive, right. You don't want everyone to wear like, or you don't want everyone to redx, you know, you, when you buy like a, you wanna have a steak. You don't go to like a or a coffee, you don't go to McDonald's, you go to like a French coffee store in the city, you know you want chiro, you don't go to like a Walmart to buy ice cream. So we are special, that's why we exclusive and it's perfectly all right if we are not for you, ‘cause we are not for everyone, only for the specific people. So I'll guide you on how to be secure without using my service. So that is where you built a kind of a trust about like, you know, how do you work? Because we work with a lot of people who are not our customer, but we teach them how to be secure. You know, and we just say, hopefully one day you'll become our client when you need more security, but right now you're not at the right fit for us, so, this is a kind of and it helps us too, like for me personally, it helps us because we can work with smaller amount of clients and give them better rather than working with bigger money. Like, I'll give you a number, like we have a 98% retention rate.

Jim: Wow. So you're giving people that we will give you your money back if it doesn't work and 98% of the people that use your product keep it.

Haseeb: 98% people keep it here.

Jim: That's huge.

Haseeb: Yeah. After one year, right. So I'm talking about one year, not even monthly. I'm just saying anyone who joined in the last three year, only that 2% people have left since we started.

Jim: That's incredible. Indian group, people who died, people who left the country, people who had some other issues, and that's about it, yeah, and, so this is pretty much what we do, right?

Jim: That's a really good lesson in branding in general, is finding out your niche, understanding your client, and giving them exactly what they're looking for, and not trying to just appeal to everyone, and you've done that really well. Now, I imagine in your business, this isn't your first business, you started you and I'm sure you've learned lessons along the way. Let's talk about, you know, what you were doing before you started Efani and really figure out, like, okay, what did you learn from your last business? How has it changed here?

Haseeb: So I'll give you my quick battle. I was born in Pakistan, we had a website there, it was about car cars, like orator, right? People would buy and sell cars. And, it went to almost 5 million clients and users. And we, I left the country, I moved to Canada to study, but I learned that we were into passionate people who have car, they are passionate, right? And whenever there's six cars standing, like, you know, even whoever you are, if you see, see like six Ferrari standing anywhere, your head will turn and you'll get directed to that group, like that's the thing, right? This is the thing, so we started with that and we were really passionate about, I really wanted it to be done. So when I moved to Canada, I started, I bought some Bitcoin back in 2013, you know, and Bitcoin was growing up and it was really get difficult to get by Bitcoin at that time. Right Now everyone knows that, but at that time people were actually walking to stores, they were like, Craig, list of poor Bitcoin. You'll meet up with someone like really sketchy stuff or you would send like, you know, envelope to some people, outside the country are mail it people physically mailing, right? And so we decided that why don't we just set up a chaos that you can walk up to and buy, like, you know, Bitcoin? It's a simple problem, nothing else. And our goal was simple buy, sell Bitcoin within 60 seconds. You know, 62nd, we said, you get a Bitcoin. And we kept on growing that, right? Like, we didn't augment with other currencies, we said, this is what we are going to do and we got acquired last year. We had like, I think 10,000 locations, over half a million clients in processing, over a billion dollar per year. And so what we learned is that number one is that there was a theory that said for any start of celebratory survive, they need thousand, celebrate. They need thousand super fans, that's all they need, you know, if you have a a thousand fans, you can probably charge them like maybe a hundred, that's a hundred thousand dollars per year, Per year, and that's like a hundred thousand dollars per year, right? Which is double the average income by, so how do you find thousand people? You know? So one is you work with one client and basically they give you a lot of money, or you work with a lot of client who pay you less money. So my thinking has been that do one thing, but do it really well, like in our case, when we were selling Bitcoin, we would just say, we'll do one thing now, we get sold gift cards on the same. We could have sold like, you know, airline tickets, I'm just saying we could have done multiple things on the same machine ‘cause it's the hardware, right? You know, buying Bitcoin and operation from buying gift cards, same formula, same everything, but the thing is, when you monopoly the specific niche, it's very good, like, I'll give example, like, you wanna buy a coffee, you know, you wanna go to a bestest coffee shop that you wanna buy most of the time, that's where you'll be able to buy the most amount of money, like, have the best experience, right? You want to eat steak, go to McDonald to buy a steak, right? You have like, you know, nice kind of a burger, you go to both burger shop, you know, it's a joint shop, right? Like, you know what I think is that if you have whatever comes in, people mind when they hear about your brand first, that's what your brand is, when you have a Walmart, it's cheap, you know, you hear about Costco, it's bulk, right? You hear about like, you know, a range of a like guy in a suit, right? So that's like, so it all depends on what people associate with you, you know? And the way for you is to we think about that hopefully in the next five year, people say who's building a funny for internet, you know, who's like, you have like Uber for this, Uber for this, Uber for this. So we say ideally this should be gold, people should refer us, who's building this for Efani for security. So we become like a synonymous with security, you know? And if you have one thing in your hand, it's just like, if you have to run right now, you run with your cell phone before you and pick up your shoes, you know? And if we can establish trust with one thing, that can actually open up a lot of gates for us, you know, like you may want to look at other, that's why Apple is such a strong brand, because we use computers and this is something that we spend 10 hour, 12. David, so in term of branding, what I've seen is that the less you do, the more it is.

Jim: Explain that one a little bit more to me, I'll give you simple, like, look at logos, let's start with logos, like, you know, look at stripe logos pretty simple, stripe square logos, pretty simple, you know? What happened is that sometimes we actually do everything for everyone, you know, and that becomes a challenge for a lot of people is because as a business owner, if I'm opening like a steak restaurant, steak should be for everyone, you know? But it's not for everyone, I'll give you example, first of all, you have to be non weg, so a lot of people are vegetarians, so you just lose those people, right? Then who basically eats takes, it's between like a specific age to specific age, right? If it's not halal, it's not kosher, you exclude a lot of community too. So you say, okay man, it's only for people who eat this and this kind of meat. It's expensive, steaks are generally expensive. So you look at what's the price point you're targeting? Who can afford that meal? Who can afford like a $200 steak? So the more you become, the branding becomes according to that. You know, so this is, I think, so the less is that, less is more is like, you know, the more, the less people you wanna. And the more clear you are, the youth self steak to people who make over $80,000 lived in zip code, right. And that's about it. Like, you know, that's a very thing. I don't know how many girls would like to go out on a girl's night out to each steak, you know, but it's pretty common that are men, boys will like to go out and have a steak dinner, you know? So then you look at, okay, what wine should go with the steak? You know, what beer should go with the steak? You know what I'm saying is then you, everything inside the house is like a brand, you don't wanna have like a fashion and TV subscription in the steakhouse, you should ha So I'm just saying that if you include a very, if you work on like a very specific niche, it's really good for you, like, you know, you may not go to a steakhouse if Kim Kardashian advertising it, you, but you may do it if it's a rocket is eating a steak. You know? Cause that's how relation works in branding, so less is more is that if a was doing everything for everyone, like, like we don't provide hardware devices to anyone. We just say buy it from Apple directly, we don't do that. It's not our business, you know? We don't give Netflix, we don't give you this, we say we only give you one thing, security that's, you want security to come to us, you don't want security, don't come to us, we'll guide you on what you need.

Jim: And right now, that focus right now for you, that focus is on cell phones, but that's in the future, as you said, the focus is going to be on internet and cell phones and just security in general with devices. Is that it?

Haseeb: I think the focus will be only in like the current people communication. Whatever way, shape, or form it is like you want to communicate with us, that's how we secure. So it could be i it in the future. Because in the future what's going to happen is that your car will have all auto pilots and everything. So if you're traveling from one place to another place, no one should know your location ‘cause someone can technically intercept your card location just by having a sim card number. So now you and I will be simple, but what above is a tank is going from here to like Bakerfield Los Angeles. You know, you know there must be, they need to track like how states can attack. And the next war would not be like a proper war. It could be like a cyber attack, like why do you need to go into a country if, while you can just destroy them communication wise? And one thing I have to bring down would be communication. So you cannot talk to anyone, you cannot communicate and everything goes down. If you look today there were like, you know, I think airlines could not fly today, I dunno if you heard the news, like, airlines could not fly today because of them clashing the system. So what happened in Southwest last month? First of all, you wanna bring down, you just wanna focus on their communication. If they can't communicate to each other, everything goes down, and so our goal is can we make a safe communication, that's about it.

Jim: And is that something that you feel is that an attainable, is that going to take a lot of resources, is it something that you feel you're prepped to do?

Haseeb: Well, we prepped to do, it'll take resources. Do have the resources, absolutely not right, because it's a massive thing, it's like a cyber security is ever evolving, like, you know, we may be it's one of the most curious thing in the world in a way that you are as good as you are yesterday or something like that, right? Like tomorrow, attack vector can change, you know, tomorrow, like, you know, we may be able attack against Russia, but what if, can we attack? Can we save you against China too, you know, ‘cause they may come up with the different exploits, you know, they're constantly attacking with AI-based attacks, attacks are always changing. So, but our goal is, can we, at least from a branding point of view to begin with, is that whenever you think about our brand, it comes to secure communication. Remember the Blackberry days? People use Blackberry and the Blackberry will represent, okay, this person's serious businessman. And if you look at signal, if someone says, signal me or something that's like, you know, okay, I wanna have focus on privacy, so our goal is first of all, understand the needs of people, because chatting with cybersecurity and privacy, both of them is that it's very difficult to change people behavior, like I'll give you example, like you live in a rough neighborhood and if I ask you to gym where, Bulletproof vest, every time that you leave house, it's not practical, you know that you're wearing a helmet and everything ‘cause you just want to chill, right? But at the same time, what can we do that you don't have to wear that, but still you're secure. So our thing is that what's the least amount of work that you have to do right now to be more secure possible? And that's always a difficult task because you may wanna watch Facebook on your phone, but you don't want to track it. Like you still wanna watch TikTok video, but you don't want them to share any information, you know? So these are all, this is all, then how do you not change people behavior, but at the same time providing more security? Is it achievable? It's not like a binary, it's not like zero to one, right? It's always going to be linear. You know, can we make you more secure today than you were yesterday? You know, are you well prepared for that? And it's like weakest link, are you the weakest link? Are you the most vulnerable that can attract today. So, and as long as we can, attract, and in our brand too, like if you look at any major innovation, it was mostly for Aite, high network individuals like who will fly maybe 150 years ago, a hundred years ago for the luxury. Right now we are flying, as in there's nothing, you know? Horses used to be, common cars were very luxury things. Now horses are luxury and cars are, you know, common. So everything was built for like, you know, ultra hybrid network individual, like cell phones were very expensive, you start with those and then you basically make that money and you go into mass markets.

Jim: So what's one piece of advice that you can give to the Remote Start Nation right now on being more secure with our phones?

Haseeb: So self phone security is like part a bigger problem, the only thing is like, first of all, I'm, again, family plans. Obviously I'm biased, but family plans are always vulnerable. If you have a business to run, you should not put your daughter on the same plan, I know it's rative, it's easy, but at same time, your risk portfolio is different than your daughter portfolio, right? So it's like, you know, you don't use the same computer because you are different people, you know? So keep them separate, cause on average, if a mobile hack get, I think the average cost is like $43,000, $44,000. And what I've read is that any business who had a debt breach, they got a business within six months or something, you know? So it's a very high cost second, they just use like two factor authentication, you know, like use like authenticator, Google authenticator, like t and use the, you're the hardware key and you're the password manager. These are like three or four things like you have to just have to do, and we secure the 99.99% people of the world. So literally takes half an hour, less a hundred dollars than cost, and you can avoid like a lot of things. The challenge is cybersecurity is because not visual people ignore it. If I ask you to like put a fence on your, on house or like put a doorbell with a camera on your house, you may do it ‘cause you can visualize it. But cybersecurity, you don't realize it. So people take, not take it seriously, but not as to take seriously, they also think that no one, I'm not important, why would someone come after me? But no man, hackers do not discriminate, they will come after anyone who is at low risk, ‘cause that's the high ROI. And they will be attacking from all across the world, so why take risks? Like if you can spend half an hour and get your security up to date, why not do it right away?

Jim: That's great advice, I want to change the topic a little bit. We've talked a lot about security, but one thing with your three businesses that you've started and ran, you have a background in both bootstrapping and venture, and I'd like to kind of talk about that a little bit and, you know, hear your opinion and how they differ and this business is different from the others.

Haseeb: So a lot of people, like, you know, like especially in businesses, so they say that, Hey man, oh, I need funding to get started, like something that's do require funding, right? You wanna patent something that is like, you know, a next generation medicine or you wanna build like a rocket, obviously they'll be required funding, but a lot of business you don't need funding, and people will say, oh, you know, like you can in our business, like, you know, we frankly in the beginning, like, you know, and I was running, but it was one stop till we go to like almost half a million revenue. One person and I recently moved to us, you know, I moved and I started a business off after a month and it was Covid times, people were very scared, like very hard for you to talk to anyone. And so we started the business, so one thing is that venture back business, a totally different, totally different thing, everyone think about, oh my God, like, you know, we hear about Uber then like, you know, Left and all those big things that you see, but behind those, like they're 99.9% people who are basically in shamble than no one hear about them anymore. It's more, you know, like we hear about Elon Musk, but how many Elon Musk exists there? You know, so I'm not a favor against anyone, I'm just saying that choose what you want. And people believe that a funding has to happen before you start a business. But 99, I think 97, 90 8% business do not have any funding, they have bootstrapped in the US too, and they need to have fancy office. No, you don't need to have a fancy office, so to summarize it, just depends on your own lifestyle, I personally like profitable businesses, that's my style, you know, even if you are funding, you can just use it to grow your business, and you should be okay with like, you know, personally I'm saying is that not every outcome has to be zero one, it can have a really outcome too, frankly, like if you make like three, $400 in your, in like couple of like five, 10 years, that's a massive outcome, and that is easy, achievable, at least in the US as compared to you wanna be a unicorn and say, you know, I really wanna be a unicorn. So to summarize all of this is that all depends on your own thing. Both are good, but both are bad too, personally, I like food start, but even maybe a hybrid where you raise some money, but very little money to get started, but ultimately you keep on grow business, sustainably.

Jim: Profitably, yeah.

Haseeb: Profitably, yeah, yeah, sustainably, profitably, yeah.

Jim: So were your first two businesses bootstrapped or did you get capital?

Haseeb: First, bootstrapped second was capital.

Jim: And then this is Efani is bootstrapped as well?

Haseeb: So this is profitable, this is kind of venture backed, in a way that we raise money from our clients, right. But we run it as a bootstrapped. So we, our mentality is purely, we like make a pin and every month and we say that, okay, you know, this client has been sustainable. So we make decisions as in it has to be a bootstrapped.

Jim: That's awesome, I like that model.

Haseeb: Yeah. So you can raise money in time, you can tap into the money any time, but basically it replan. So you think about that as a loan that you took. But on your own terms, it's a bank in your, in a company that you take money out from anyone, but you have to replenished it.

Jim: That's awesome. So what is one piece of advice you'd give your younger self, looking back now at where you've grown, what you've been able to accomplish with your businesses and in your professional career, what's one piece of advice you'd give to your younger self?

Haseeb: I can take more risk. No, it doesn't mean that you should basically crash your car and get it to UI, but it also means that, okay, you should start your business earlier on, like, you know, don't get a corporate job, you need your care, lot of people go for that. Now, sometimes they have problem, but like, you know, if you can live on a mattress in San Francisco or anywhere where you can work with someone and optimize for learning till 30 up till 30, your goal should be, to optimize for learning, you know, don't worry about money and then plan properly, you know, like start planning earlier on, like investing is very simple. You can invest your time and effort, but take more risk, if you have a chance to make a hundred X in the next step, you know in the first 10 years of your career, go for it and build your network.

Jim: I love that. Where can the Remote Start Nation find you?

Haseeb: I'm pretty active on Twitter or LinkedIn https://twitter.com/haseeb, and same, if you can search my name, H-A-S-E-E-B-A-W-A-N, you can find me some. That the platform is that you love.

Jim: Excellent. Haseeb, what's in a closing statement, what's one piece of advice that, from everything we talked about today, that you wanna make sure the Remote Start Nation keeps in their mind and can learn from today?


Haseeb: I think, so cybersecurity, like it takes half an hour to secure, frankly, do it, you know, don't like, you know, delay it tomorrow. Because you may delay, but the hacker man will not delay. The moment he get a chance, he'll come up to you. That's one thing.

Jim: Excellent.

Haseeb: And the second thing is, man, like just have, invest in yourself, right? So, you know, keep and yeah, that's about it, right? Invest in yourself and frankly, just be a better version of yourself, I know this is pretty simple to say, just be a better, don't compare yourself with anyone.

Jim: I love that, that's great advice. With that, said, Haseeb, thank you so much for taking your time today and meeting with us. I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart, thank you. I know you're very busy and congrats on all your success and thank you again for sharing what you've learned with the Remote Start Nation.

Haseeb: Thank you, man, really appreciate. Thanks for having me on the show.

Jim: Absolutely. Well, with that Remote Start, we will talk to you soon, we'll see you on the next episode. In the meantime, go start something, go take 30 minutes, get secure, listen to what Haseeb said. Let's do this Remote Star Nation. We'll see you next time. Thank you.

Haseeb: Thank you. Thank you.

Jim DoyonProfile Photo

Jim Doyon


My name is Jim Doyon. I'm a father to three awesome kids, husband to an incredible wife and the oldest sibling to a large split family.I'm currently on a mission and I can't wait to share with you. We sold our house back in 2020, and we've been traveling this beautiful country in a 42-foot Travel trailer ever since. We visited 34 states, and are about to embark on our second loop around the country, stopping at some of our favorite spots again, but also getting to see new areas that the US has to offer.We are trying to experience this life to its fullest spending quality time together. I'm running a business and building brands along the road. We've been fortunate enough on this journey to meet new friends, catch up with old friends and family on many of our stops. We love exploring each City from downtown's to the natural resources it has to offer. I'm passionate about mountain biking and it's not only in my way to get out and explore but to exercise, clear my head, think, and strategize.

Haseeb AwanProfile Photo

Haseeb Awan


Haseeb has a track record of two successful business exits, raising over 100M in venture capital & growing the customer base from 0-4 Million users & expanding the business globally into 15 countries across 4 continents within 18 months. He has been included among the top 100 influential people in FINTECH globally, won multiple international awards, wrote for and is mentioned in multiple international media & frequently speaks at international conferences & government committees. He has a degree in Electrical Engineering and a Masters's Degree in Engineering Management. He also has studied Financial Markets at Yale University & actively holds Project Management Professional (PMP) designation. He is also a Y-Combinator & Next Founder Alumni. He was an early Bitcoiner. His career in crypto started when he co-founded the Bitcoin ATM company six years ago & installed the first bitcoin ATM in Toronto, New York, San Francisco, Montreal, Ottawa & 50 other major cities in 15 countries on four continents within 18 months. He has personally invested in 30+ companies & advising over ten companies on branding, marketing & sales.