We had the good fortune of connecting with Mark Frieser and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mark, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I will assess a market and then build a business to serve it. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial bent. I started my first business when I was 12, then my first real business (an event organisation company) in college, so creating something out of nothing is second nature to me. I like to create and build as well as to be of service. And though I’ve worked as an executive at public companies, my nature has always been entrepreneurial. So when I looked at starting my businesses, I started by looking at sectors of a marketplace and from there assessing where the growth areas of the market may be in the future. This has been the case with my previous company, a mobile content business, and my current company, a music licensing business and educational company.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Well, I would say two things about my career. First, I’ve always been a bit of a self-starter. I’ve always had goals and wanted to work towards them. Second, I’ve always loved people, and I’ve learned over the years to work with, mentor and uplift people. These elements of my personality have guided my approach. My passions in life have been people, music, work/business, writing and politics. Getting to this point in my career has had its challenges – all entrepreneurial lives have them, but the joys more than make up for it. What lessons have I learned? Serve others, listen to them, have an open, kind attitude towards people and always try to do your best.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Hmm, well, my home city is New York. If I was to take them out, we’d go to get some great food and drinks. NY has some of the best food in the world – I’m partial to Japanese and Italian, but there’s so much more. And I’d take them to the bars and places that are interesting, lively and cool. I’d take them to see intellectual important places, and of course the tourist sites. And we’d go shopping too. We would play it by ear for the most part, letting the city guide us.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many people it’s difficult for me to choose one. In this case, I would like to give a shoutout to my friend, collaborator and mentor of over two decades, Makoto Kaneshiro. Makoto is a classically-trained violinist, entrepreneur, investor and business executive based in Tokyo Japan who has always been there to support my efforts and business ideas. And he taught me a great deal in business and life over the course of our relationship.