Joaquim Valente, the entrepreneur who brought Escape Games to Porto

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Joaquim Valente, the entrepreneur who brought Escape Games to Porto

Joaquim Valente, the entrepreneur who brought Escape Games to Porto

Porto Exit Games is one of the pioneer companies importing escape games from Japan to Portugal. Behind the scenes of this business set in Porto, we found a successful couple: Joaquim Valente and Thaís Nomi, both MBA alumni, who left their careers in civil engineering and medicine to accomplish a wish - provide experiences.

Defining Joaquim Valente's journey is not an easy task. But one thing is certain: what best defines Joaquim is his entrepreneurial path. Although we worked as a civil engineer for four years, he always had parallel projects on his own and created several companies in diverse areas, from consulting, to software or health, until he found his true passion: the escape games.


Thais Nomi is his "partner in crime", both in life and in business. Together they traveled around the world to experience escape games until they finally launched Porto Exit Games, in 2014. At the time this was a pioneer concept in the market of escape games experiences, which has its origins in Japan.


"I feel we're creating different and leaving our legacy to the entertainment industry. My goal was never just to make money. In fact, whenever I was making a lot of money, in previous projects, I was less happy. Maybe because I felt that I was creating less, that everything was a bit stalled. But of course, it was always good because I could use that money to create something else," says Joaquim Valente.


At Porto Exit Games all games are original and are related to the city. “What is most gratifying in this business”, explains the founder, “is the return and the satisfaction of the participants who enter into these experiences and try to escape, “unharmed”.


Porto Exit Games emerged with an innovator business model, to which the experience in Porto Business School has contributed, a lot, explains The Magellan MBA Alumnus of the 2009/2010 class. "In the MBA I felt that I could embrace any challenge (…). Sometimes, it is necessary to be stimulated, to place in practice, not only discuss, in theory, and for this the career of entrepreneur is the best. In Porto Exit Games my wife and I do everything, from the most basic operations to more strategic thinking, marketing, or finances. We are always in research mode, to learn new techniques, new theories that we try to implement with our teams," explains Joaquim Valente.


With 34 years old, Joaquim Valente has already an impressive entrepreneurial track record -  Goglobal, a consultancy firm, founded in 2011, Playnify, in 2014, a web and mobile platform created to players to find other players to practice amateur sports; Codeplace, a platform to help anyone who wants to learn how to code; and By Spectra, a device to measure clinically relevant parameters of blood, serum and urine.


And to keep up the pace, Joaquim and Thais are planning another project that will revolutionize the concept of team building experience. A large investment, supported by the founders of Porto Exit Games, with internationalization goals. A business to keep an eye on during 2018.