Mono. This is the start-up where my boyfriend works. They produce fresh smoothies and fruit shots – every week. Their motto: no compromise – best quality possible. And they deliver it by bicycle. “Very romantic”, is how founder Sandro Gassmann describes it. But what does my boyfriend Simon do all day? I know he was the one on the bicycle, who had to start his day at 6 a.m. This is the time of day when I am asleep. Then Simon was the one who managed the smoothie and shot production every Wednesday and Sunday night. Again, while I slept. And now he is responsible for the finance and accounting duties. He says: “To work for a start-up is a new challenge every day.” I see how he does this with his heart and soul.
When I visited Mono’s office, I am submerged in start-up feelings. The Werkhof Grubenstrasse at Binz in Zürich is a big construction area. A few weeks ago, the office was still in Gassmann’s apartment. In the new one there are three tables, some chairs, a printer in a bookshelf and a green wall. Voilà. And the fridge had just been ordered by the trainee. Simple, and totally a work in progress, much like the environment outside their door.
That was three weeks ago, so my boyfriend had to do the end-of-month accounting like the paying the wages, paying the bills and doing some customer calls. “The groceries work is very dynamic. Oranges are not the same every day. Sometimes they are very juicy and pricy, sometimes not,” says Simon. It must be very difficult to plan a business when you are a new company, with your business components still unsure and in flux, and you are obliged to rely on a branch of trade that is as unstable as the varying quality of orange juice.
But he manages to do all of it, this learning-by-doing experience! And I go along with him on the journey.