How many years have you been a Founder?

I have been a Founder in the Deeptech space for the last 5 years. Over the last ~18 months, I have been working at the intersection of hardware, software, and biology with a GREAT TEAM that includes an Agronomy PhD with an entrepreneurial spirit and professional exporting farmers.

Are you a first-time or serial Founder?

I am a serial founder on a mission to revolutionise high-value crop farming by unlocking Earth's Equatorial land potential while empowering farmers, disrupting commodity trading and facilitating agriculture micro-financing.

What's your backstory. How did you come to be a Founder?

I have long been obsessed with liberating the lagging Colombian territory agricultural potential from the conflicting interests of those exerting violence and coercion in order to generate wealth building opportunities for the general population, and work on a massively scalable, high-recurrent profit business, while capturing carbon, and leaving a positive social footprint.

What has been your highlight as a Founder?

I have had so many highlights as a Founder. These include introducing several new products to the market and opening new opportunities that generated millions of dollars in profits, leading multi-disciplinary teams under scarce and limited resources while maintaining relationships, environment, motivation, engagement, and high-quality derivables, and managing companies, teams, brands, products, sales, machine shops.

What has been your lowlight as a Founder?

I’ve crashed and burned a couple (lots) of times. 🙃

How did you come across Landscape?

I don’t clearly remember but I think I found it somewhere on Twitter... However, I’m grateful I came across Landscape and its insightful community.

Biggest challenge right now/thing you need help on:

So many!

- Questions like "So you 'only' need U$25k to kickstart your project? Why don’t you 'just' raise a friends & family round?"
- We’re constantly exploring options to get up-to-speed; while making good of what we have and doing the best that we can with the available resources.
- Particularly in Deeptech, it takes money, talent, and resources to build boots and straps.


What's the biggest mistake you’ve made so far and what did you learn from it?

Distribution > Product. I spent 3+ years at my past project developing and launching a new technology for the underground infrastructure industry in Horizontal Directional Drilling. I heavily focused on the product, making it work and proving doubters that the technology provided the benefits we stated. I overlooked and undervalued distribution and infrastructure stakeholders interests (besides from, duh, citizens...!?), learning the hard way that the incentives between most of those involved in the execution and decisions of such projects are so f*cked up.

What piece of advice would you give to other Founders?

My advice to founders: work on something you’re passionate about, follow the money on the problem you want to solve (beware the world ain’t no Narnia), and build a team with whom you’d be willing to spend a long and stressful time with.

What is the most frustrating thing you find about the startup fundraising ecosystem?

Access to networks, “pedigree”, and the question “why don’t you just raise a friends and family round?”.

What you would like to see change in the startup fundraising ecosystem within the next 5 years?

In the next 5-10 yrs, I looking forward to seeing LATAM founders and early employees becoming rich — and invest their money into the local ecosystem in a way the “old money” in the region never did.

Luis is the Founder of Rooty which is currently in stealth mode. His LinkedIn profile can be found here & his Clubhouse handle is '_lfmm_'.

His email address is also felipe.morales.mor@gmail.com and he is happy to be contacted.