“I’m a hungry entrepreneur because I’m desperate to reach my goals. I’ll do whatever it takes to complete them,” explains Tony Cueva Bravo, Co-Founder of Drop, a medical hardware start up in Lima, Peru.
In December 2014, Tony was wrapping up his university career with a major in electrical engineering and started having doubts about his chosen career path.
“I really wanted to contribute to society and I wasn’t sure that as an engineer I would be able to fulfill that goal to my utmost ability.”
He decided to take an entrepreneurship course offered by the University on a whim and instantly fell in love.
“I was WOWed! That class has completely changed my life. I realized that as an entrepreneur I would have leverage and an impact on society.”
For the next few months, Tony began spending afternoons sipping on Starbucks coffee and surfing the internet for his big idea. But, each idea he came up with didn’t seem to fit. That’s when Tony realized his hands were sweating again.
He suffers from hyperhidrosis or excessive sweating, a condition he finds embarrassing and uncomfortable. “What if other people are suffering the same pain as me?” asked Tony. That’s when Drop was born.
Drop is a portable medical device that reduces excessive sweating by applying small doses of electricity.
Right now, the device is a prototype but Tony expects to launch the product by the end of 2016 in Peru, Chile, Colombia and Mexico.
His big hurdle has been registration with Peru’s version of the FDA. “It involves a lot of tests and trials. The product could receive registration in as little as six months or as much as a year.” As Tony looks to markets outside of Peru, he’ll have to overcome registration processes in those countries as well.
Throughout the entire process, Tony’s biggest lesson has been perseverance, “If you love what you are doing and you are passionate about the idea, you will gain the perseverance. Perseverance is key because there are a lot of ups and downs in starting a business. Mistakes will be made.”
Need help with YOUR Start Up? Meet MIT'S Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp
Tony says one of the biggest things that has helped him during his start up processes was MIT’s Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp, “a nexus connecting entrepreneurs from around the world to the entrepreneurial ecosystem surrounding the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”
Entrepreneurs selected are expected to start companies in one week and pitch their idea before a panel of investors. Apply for The MIT Global Entrepreneurship Bootcamp here: bootcamp.mit.edu