A Slice on Peter Costa, Co-Founder and CEO of Baltu Technologies
Becoming an entrepreneur at a young age, Peter Costa has always been familiar with forging his own path. While taking advantage of every learning experience presented to him, Costa has used his life experiences combined with education to create a company geared towards the greater good. Costa is co-founder and CEO of Baltu Technologies, a hands-on training platform for the workplace designed to reduce downtime and make training more efficient.
Costa’s entrepreneurial journey started before most, in high school with a band called Scary Kids Scaring Kids.
After graduating high school, Costa spent his time touring all over the world before residing in Argentina for a few years, where he met his wife and now co-founder. When Costa came back to the United States, he attended Arizona State University to study Physics and Music. He utilized this time to really find out what he was interested in and found that he was really into science, technology and creativity in the arts. Costa worked creating audio and music for video games before working in a biophysics lab. To Costa’s advantage, this was during the time of the emerging technologies: virtual reality and augmented reality.
In 2016, Costa and his wife teamed up to start their first company. They did not hesitate to take advantage of augmented and virtual reality. This was a software development company, building ad hoc software solutions using VR and AR. Targeting the education and data visualization space, Costa and his team continuously stayed on top of learning and understanding problems that their customers were having to find solutions to. “We realized that technology was fantastic but the priority was solving the problem. So it was more about design coupled with technology, and how do you create a solution that really addresses the problem effectively… There are all these ways you can use technology for good.”
Costa got his first opportunity to make a positive impact when he noticed a huge issue in the education system. His father-in-law had immigrated to the United States from Argentina and was unable to get a job. He had to drop out of school at the age of 16 in order to support his family, and became an “incredibly experienced, smart electrician”. Unfortunately, when he came to the U.S., he was unable to find employment as he didn’t have the credentials to validate his past experience. Costa and his family helped get him the credentials but noticed another obstacle he had to overcome. “All of these classroom environments were great for a certain segment of students, and those students were successful, but for my father-in-law, he just could not do well in a classroom environment. He had an incredibly difficult time studying for tests and taking notes in a classroom setting. Knowing how to retain information in this kind of abstract environment was incredibly challenging for him.”
Shown a perspective that was new to Costa, he learned that his father-in-law was not alone in this; a lot of other people struggle with this kind of learning. “I see a huge population of people that this [school] is not going to work for. It’s not because they’re not intelligent, it’s just because the way they learn is different and there’s not really a vehicle that allows them to learn in an efficient way.” Due to the trade industry being extremely hands-on, Costa stressed that there’s a huge gap in learning because of the way these people are being forced to learn, which is an environment that’s not right for them. Noticing patterns with other people having trouble with the traditional education route, Costa used this as a learning experience as well as an opportunity to make a change.
For Costa, one of the most important things within business is diversity. He feels fortunate to have a diverse founding team by his side because it leverages everyone’s strengths and provides different perspectives. “It’s been really helpful because when we come and speak with them as a team, we have great conversations and create an experience. We feel like we come out with a result that is very well-rounded and ultimately doesn’t leave anyone behind.” Costa’s ultimate goal is to create a business that has an incredible impact on society, and that comes with keeping yourself in check, constantly learning and creating a solution that is equitable to all.