Founder Profile: Hugo Bernardo, Founder of Easy Vino

4 min read
Startup Mentoring

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Founder of Easy Vino

Hugo Bernardo, Founder of Easy Vino

Hugo Bernardo

San Francisco, CA


  • Business Management, Major in Finance from Universidade Católica Portuguesa
  • MBA, Business from MIT

Prior Experience:

  • Co-founder of Piictu, a direct and simple way to talk and play with pictures from your mobile phone.
  • Co-Founder of Piensa en Red, B2B mobile solutions
  • Client services & Telecom Practice at The Nielsen Company
  • Consultant at The Boston Consulting Group

Current Startup:
Easy Vino; an easy way to drink great vine in a restaurant.

To scale the sommelier experience and make it accessible to every consumer everywhere. As it is now, people are usually overwhelmed by the amount of choices they have and Easy Vino wants to make that choice easy, while bringing more power to the consumer.


  • Alpha version of mobile app is built.
  • Alpha users for testing.
Current Focus:
  • Launching public beta version.
  • Finalizing app for the Appstore.

Lessons Learned:
“Make sure to give due diligence to your board and your investors in the same way you do to everyone else you work with. I find that people do this a lot with co-founders, employees and even suppliers but they are usually not as demanding when it comes to investors and board members. I would say that this tremendously important in terms of success and how happy you are as a founder. You should look at your investor the same way as you look at everyone else you work with in a startup and make sure that you will be happy working with them in the long term. Bring your key values to the table and make sure that the whole group makes sense. That is probably the biggest lesson I learned from the first company that I started. Another thing I have learned is that if you are in the mobile space, focus on only one platform at a time. Make sure that you get it right before you expand, especially if you’re short on money or are bootstrapped.”

Staying Motivated:
“I would say that I naturally like to build things. Especially in the beginning where I think some people struggle, whereas I particularly like that stage of coming from an idea to start building it, launching, testing. All this is naturally motivating for me. One thing I do try to do is have frequent milestones so that progress is evident. This way I never have to go two months without seeing something being accomplished. Of course frequent milestone should only be made where it makes sense but I think bigger tasks like building something during say two months, can easily be split into smaller milestones.”

Biggest Mentor:
“Im lucky enough to have several friends who are or have started businesses successfully so for me it is more a network of mentors if you will. This way I have a bunch of people that I can go to for advice if I’m stuck or if I lack motivation one day. Another thing is that I try to join other people that are at the same stage as I am and I that sense I would say that the Founders Network is another mentor for me. It is a bunch of people that are doing the same thing that I am so if I have any question or doubts I can easily get here from the people in it. Finding these mentors or advisors really depends on two things. One is experience, that they have been in the same place or situation and even better if more than once. Secondly, how articulate the person is, that they are able to convey the message, tell you what happend and how their experience can help you.”

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