Mr. Darren Ku: The Business Of Sincerely Helping Other Businesses Succeed
Venture Haven Pte Ltd
The road to entrepreneurship is one riddled with heartaches, headaches and yes, money aches. Thankfully, one company offers a haven for individuals who desire to venture out on their own and become successful entrepreneurs.
Venture Haven Pte Ltd offers professional business advice and accountancy services to help entrepreneurs throughout all their business life cycle. Helmed by Mr. Darren Ku, a Chartered Financial Accountant, Venture Haven desires to change the financial consultancy and accounting service industry by offering not just company formation services, but in-depth financial advisory crucial in priming any business for success.
A year after it was founded in October 2013, Venture Haven has now helped up to 200 businesses. What makes them a success story? Mr. Darren Ku tells all here.
Breaking Grounds: The Start Of Venture Haven
Mr. Darren Ku is quick to acknowledge that one inherent attribute of all businesses is that getting started is always the hardest part. Venture Haven was no exception. “I started alone. There were challenges on cash flow and gaining the trust of clients because we were brand new,” he said.
To gain the trust of clients, Darren did one thing: He served them sincerely. “We were true to ourselves; we were sincere in our service. We gave them the right solutions.” Darren shares that other company set up consultancy firms would advise new businesses to register as a Private Limited company because there would be recurring income for the consultancy firm if their client would take this route. He had seen many new businesses experience high attrition rate and eventually fold up because of the wrong choice of company set up. “Probably the recommendation was not so good. This time, Venture Haven is about how to sincerely serve the client’s interest. If the client will have better results starting as a sole proprietorship, then that is what we will recommend.”
One may ask, where does Venture Haven base its recommendation? The company has a team of Chief Financial Officers who currently works or previously worked in corporations, both listed and unlisted. With new business owners having very limited resources, the tendency is for them to hire junior accountants to update their books of accounts and meet compliance requirements. Doing it this way, new business owners are unable to strategise financially in terms of business planning, budgeting, forecasting, and business analysis. CFOs from Venture Haven bridge this crucial gap.
Aside from this, Darren brings in his personal experience as an entrepreneur who has had two failed ventures before finally succeeding on this one. “I actually lost my entire business last year with 400-500 clients. I learned one important lesson. Never forsake the bigger side of things. Express terms and conditions in black and white even if an agreement is amongst friends.”
Seasoned entrepreneurs often advise young entrepreneurs to follow their passions to succeed in business. Darren’s personal experience gives him a finer perspective on this. “Sometimes we are driven by impulse. We have to be mature enough on this road of entrepreneurship. We have to understand ourselves better, what are our trigger points. If there is distrust and disharmony we will not be contributing to the success of our business. We have to understand ourselves so as not to make a bad and unfair decision that spoils a good partnership,” he shares.
Making It Big: Don’t Rush, Don’t Just Do It
Mr. Darren Ku believes that the secret to making it big in any business is in keeping the fundamentals right.
“To become an entrepreneur is beyond the “Just Do It” mentality. You have to do a lot of homework. Why do you want to do it? There can be many reasons, like, I want to provide a good living for my family, I hate working for people, I want to be millionaire, or a billionaire. Don’t rush into entrepreneurship, do your homework, do your research, find out more, meet more people.”
For Venture Haven, Darren has the fundamentals in place. His vision in the next five years is founded on principles he firmly believes in. “We have to propose value. We do not sell our clients what they don’t need. What I see is that the business services industry is very fragmented consisting small players. There’s a lot room for improvement in this industry. Using a platform to have alliance and bring people together will give value to clients and transparency,” he shares.
Darren acknowledges that fear is present when you’re just starting in a business. He advises entrepreneur to first recognise fear so that they can think of the right solution. “Recognise the fear, calm down, don’t go into emotional state, have patience, think of a solution. Don’t get too complex. Sometimes we tend to overthink. Let’s learn how to simplify our thinking. The processes could sometimes be simple even to solve the complex problems.”
Love For Entrepreneurship: Sacrifices Are Worth Every Satisfying Moment
Today, Mr. Darren Ku jumps out of bed excited to work. This is not to say that his advisory work is easy. Instead, it is a reflection of his satisfaction as an entrepreneur. “Physically I am quite fatigued. Generally I like to come to work, I love meeting my clients. This meeting is a chance to provide value. Meeting different people also means we are exposed to new things. This way, we are consistently motivated and excited to work.”
Darren has had his share of sacrifices in terms of time away from family, the lack of stable monthly income, less sleep, and emotional turbulence at times. All these are worth every satisfying moment he has as entrepreneur where he gets to grow to his desired destination. “I love the freedom to decide how I want to grow.”
Darren also gets a huge kick when he has clients walking up to him with a smile. “I am happy when I hear my clients say that they made a good decision based on our advice.” For Mr. Darren Ku, success is not defined by money, recognition, fame and power. “Success is how much we are contributing to others, to our clients, to the industry, our country and society, and to mankind as a whole. If we live with sincerity, all good things will come back,” he concludes.
Venturehaven Pte Ltd Address: 531A Upper Cross Street #04-95 Hong Lim Complex Singapore 051531 Tel: 6444 3130 Fax: 65320243 Website: www.venturehaven.com.sg