Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Spotlight on a Startup: Interview with Laurie Hinckley founder of BuySelliQ

In a continuation of our series on startups, we decided to interview Laurie Hinckley founder of BuySelliQ, which was started with no venture capital funding.

1. Let's start by covering the company's business. Why don't you start by describing what the company does? 

            BuySelliQ is an online service designed for the sole purpose of assisting investors, whether novice, amateur, or professional, in the most critical area of investing, timing. Our service provides the capacity to maintain a list of 25 symbols that can be a mix of stocks, mutual funds, ETFs, and indices. At the end of the trading week, after all data for the week has been processed, BuySelliQ sends an email to inform the user that his or her list has been updated. The update provides the closing price of the vehicle for the week, but more importantly, the user is alerted to any change in the status of the symbols in the list. The proprietary algorithm used by BuySelliQ informs the user when the investment has changed trend direction from a buy to a sell, green to red, or a sell to a buy, red to green. The user should then make the trade, either over the weekend or on Monday.    

2. How did you happen to come up with the idea?

            I have been in the financial arena for over 30 years, studying, trading, writing about and speaking about the markets as they changed over the years.  When writing my weekly columns, the focus was always in educating readers in how to take advantage of opportunities in the markets while avoiding the pitfalls. 
            During this time period, technology changed the world of communication, and the way the world engages in social activities, shopping, doing business, etc. The age of the smart phone made it all possible and changed life forever. That said, I wanted to use mobile to introduce a simple, effective, app to make it possible for anyone and everyone to profit from the stock market as they go about their busy life. 
            The algorithm that is the heart of BuySelliQ has been tested, tweaked, and used in real time for many years. The goal is to introduce a tool to people that enables them to make additional funds, with confidence, and give them options to live a better life.      
3. Who are your potential customers?

            Anyone and everyone who wants to enjoy financial security, has not taken the time required to learn how to navigate the world of investing with confidence, or has a 401(k), IRA, 403(b) or a similar retirement plan that is not performing or fully invested.

4. Do you have any direct competitors? 

            Yes and no. To the extent that there are numerous companies, apps, blogs, advisors, brokers and the like, all competing for your business, you could say they are all competitors. On the other hand, our service is unique in a number of ways and the value available to users, is unmatched in the industry. 

5. How about describing your company structure.  How long in business? Location?

            BuySelliQ was just launched in the final week of February 2014. We are located in Las Vegas but the team is in various locations on the west coast from CA, to WA, and as far east as

6. Are you self-funded or do you have investors? 

            Self-funded at present.

7. Tell us a little about your background.

            I started in the financial business at age 21. My entry was through the insurance business. Next was the addition of mutual funds as investments; then it was a five plus year move into the brokerage business where I wrote a weekly financial column for the local paper, along with radio and TV. In 1992, I opened my own investment advisory firm, where I was able to use the technology being employed at BuySelliQ.

8. What do you consider your biggest challenges as a startup?

            Consumer education. The constant bombardment of so called experts recommending stocks and user action in the marketplace has created a vacuum whereby users think a rational and profitable way to invest is constant activity in their portfolio. In fact, a more measured, practical approach is what BuySelliQ strives to deliver to the end user. Our app is designed to help users take advantage of long positive gains and avoid long periods of losses. Because of this approach there is the perception that no change is a bad thing and we need to educate users and change bad habits.

9. Anything new on the horizon for your company (e.g. new type of service) that you are willing to share?

            Many enhancements are in the works for Version 1; our focus remains there at present.

10. What one piece of advice would you give someone who is just at the beginning stages of developing a startup?

            Talk to others who have gone down the same road; read all you can about the do's and don'ts; information is your best friend.  Be realistic. Set up your budget and then build in a 20% cushion.  Nothing is ever as easy as we would like.

Thank you for your time and enlightening us. Readers can see more information about the company at buyselliq.com.

No investment recommendation nor any investment promotion is expressed or implied by either the publisher, the interviewer, BuySelliQ, or the interviewee.

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