Other | January 30, 2015

Lessons in Entrepreneurship from an Agricultural Innovator

Photo Credit:

Connor Burns, Jamillah Lodge (from the Bermuda Economic Development Corp, the GEW host organization in Bermuda) and EJ Burrows at the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Moscow last year. 

Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology is rapidly evolving, finding applications in a wide variety of industries - including agriculture. The exciting industry took center-stage this fall when Bermuda Aerial Media, Bermuda’s first licensed and insured UAV-based aerial photography, videography and surveying company, won the Future Agro Challenge (FAC).

Held in Athens during Global Entrepreneurship Week, FAC is the world championship for innovators, visionaries and leaders looking to solve agricultural challenges. What better way to solve agriculture challenges then by taking a different perspective, quite literally by looking at the problem from the air!

Connor Burns and EJ Burrows, the engineers behind Bermuda Aerial, are no strangers to being recognized for their work. Soon after the starting out, the duo won the 2013 Bermuda Technology Innovation Award, presented by Bermuda’s Department of E-Commerce, and last year they attended the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Moscow as part of the delegation from Bermuda.

In anticipation of this year’s Congress in Milan, Burns shared his thoughts on entrepreneurship, success and the importance of a good pitch with us.

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Entrepreneurship is full of tough decisions

Partner relationships are vital in starting a company you want to grow, and one of the harder things is having those discussions where two parties may disagree. In the end, it worked out for me but those decisions are tough to make when they can affect long standing friendships.

Tell your story… in three minutes or less

In startup competitions, it's vital to have a clear and concise pitch which tells a story to the judges and the audience. It's a lot of fun and a great experience to be put under the pressure of a spotlight. Plus, competitions like FAC bring together a great community of people to learn from going forward.

It starts with an idea

I have always had an amazing amount of drive towards developing an idea into something not only real, but something that works, and works as a business. The idea for our startup came from a number of people and places, and it just took a lot of tinkering time (early multi-rotors weren't all that easy to fly) and a lot of persistence to get through the regulations and business development.

Know your worth

Don't price yourself low out of fear - and don't give away too much. find what the market can take and if you believe you have a good product, price it as a good product - an entrepreneur generally has a niche market with many clients willing to pay for the niche experience.

Doing good feels good

It's consistently a lot of work to start a business and sometimes it can feel like too much. When we get great feedback from clients and our work is showcased in newspapers, it really makes the effort worthwhile and brings back home the fact that what we are doing is a good and exciting thing.