An efficient entrepreneur does not always become a successful investor. And vice versa – stable high-yield investments in other people's projects do not always help you build your own business. However, experts do name certain useful skills that are necessary for an entrepreneur who wants to start investing. 

To learn what an investor needs to know, we talked to Marina Groenberg, a businesswoman who has been managing various projects in many different fields for more than 20 years. She successfully invests in both newly launched startups and stable companies with a long history.


What investors and entrepreneurs have in common

According to Marina, entrepreneurs should not only be able to generate ideas, but also to formalize them into actionable concepts. The ability to connect ideas with the existing state of affairs, as opposed to being a detached theorist, the willingness to constantly monitor and analyze the situation, study the market, set goals correctly and systematically achieve them are typical of both businessmen and investors. They take responsibility for the decisions they make.

She also mentions the specific mindset. “Entrepreneurs and investors can simultaneously see the big picture and the details – the overall pattern and the small but important aspects of the situation. They are able to absorb and analyze information and learn from their mistakes and the success of others. They have to focus on what is important and soberly observe the objective scheme of things.”

According to Marina Groenberg, successful investors and entrepreneurs have good intuition, but they tend to test it by calculating data and analyzing information from external sources. In fact, there are many similarities, but the main ones are responsibility, logical thinking and the drive to achieve. Experts also point out the following important skills that help entrepreneurs become successful investors:

1. Willingness to take risks while being aware of the consequences of failure.   
2. Positive thinking, which helps to overcome fear when making large investments.   
3. Ability to control emotions and not act impulsively.   
4. Willingness to sacrifice a little to gain more.   
5. Constant striving for self-improvement and education, including situated learning.


Researchers believe that successful investors and businessmen do not look for books of “recipes for success,” but use all available sources of information. Instead of searching for ready-made solutions, they talk to the experts in their fields of interest; they also prefer situated learning to general education, which allows them to acquire the knowledge and skills that are relevant for a particular moment.

Marina Groenberg agrees with these points. “I read a lot, but rarely do I read books about business. I rely on the experience I have gained while working on hundreds of complex deals and while negotiating and interacting with the brightest minds.”


What is the difference between entrepreneurs and investors

Entrepreneurs build and manage their own businesses. The scope of the investor's activity is much broader – it can include dozens of different industries. Some focus on passive income, some trade in the stock market, and others invest in technology startups in various fields and countries.

According to Marina Groenberg, all this can be combined in the portfolio of a single investor and reshaped depending on the market situation, strategy and other factors that influence decision-making. “Despite the similarity of concepts, entrepreneurs and investors tend to have different personality types. Although these are sometimes combined in one talented person,” says the businesswoman.


About Marina Groenberg – biography and key projects

Marina Groenberg is a top manager and an experienced investor. She was born on November 10, 1972. She graduated from the French School with honours and got three higher education degrees, all of which were awarded with distinction. She currently lives in the canton of Zurich in Switzerland. She got married in 2008. Her husband is a Swedish and Swiss citizen; he is a businessman and investor and a former hedge fund portfolio manager. Today, he runs a family business in Italy and is an avid golfer and an airplane and helicopter pilot.

Marina Groenberg's key projects are:

• Kopter Group, a Swiss company that created the innovative SH09 helicopter. Since 2020, this startup has been part of Italy's aerospace group Leonardo   
• OCSiAl, a manufacturer of carbon nanotubes   
• NexWafe, a solar technology company   
• Watchers, a developer of SaaS solutions for online stores and video platforms   
• Tallano, a company that develops emission-control technologies