Startup accelerators are becoming an important part of the ecosystem and it is great to welcome Denmark based Startupbootcamp to join Seedcamp in the European scene. The leading accelerators in the US are Y-Combinator and Techstars and one of the things that makes Startupbootcamp exciting is a tie up with Techstars.
The startup accelerator model is to make a small investment (typically tens of thousands of dollars/euros) for a smallish yet significant stake (rarely much more than 10%) and provide mentoring services, usually over an intensive three month period that follows investment. For very early stage startups with say 2-3 people these programmes can be a great way to get a few months cashflow, raise their profile and get help from a bunch of people they would otherwise have struggled to reach. Applications are open to all and applicants go through a structured evaluation process which allows the accelerator to properly review the large numbers of companies that apply.
Startupbootcamp will invest in the ten best companies that apply and work with them over a three month programme from August to October.
Applications close in a couple of days on June 30th, making me rather late with this post. I was waiting on some information from the founder Alex Facet and I missed it in my email when it arrived last week, so my bad. You can apply here.
I’m pretty excited about the power of the accelerator model and Startupbootcamp have set themselves up to do well. Ultimately an awful lot comes down to the people involved and Startupbootcamp have pulled together an impressive list.
This is how Alex described the programme to me in an email recently:
What is it
Startupbootcamp is a startup accelerator. We’re not only modelled after TechStars (have had a casual
relationship for a while) but recently became their first Global Affiliate.
Affiliates are independent entities but get to tap into the TechStars know how
and, more importantly, community. We’re located in Copenhagen, cover
northern Europe and so far have applicants from all over Europe.
How it works
We take up to 10 teams, to whom we provide some micro capital – or
“excuse-removing cash” as we like to call it – free office space and
access to our 50+ mentors who are all hands on entrepreneurs or gurus in their
respective fields. We finish with big bang on Investor Day where we
showcase our startups to a room full of investors (mostly angels and likely
some VC’s as well).
What we focus on
We’re not tech obsessed, we think there are lots of great businesses which
are tech-enabled. But we do expect startups working on areas where
significant progress can be made in three months with very limited
capital. So far many of our applicants are pitching web-based ideas, but
in wide range of industries (i.e. not only B2C). Many applicants are at
idea stage but several have running products and early customers.
How to get in
It’s 99% about the people. We’re very focused on potential, integrity
and chemistry. We don’t care about nationality, experience level or
education. We want to be seen as co-founders though we don’t ask for
preferred shares or board seats. Only when we’re satisfied with the
people do we look at the idea. The idea will change during the program
Who’s behind it
I am the co-founder with Rainmaking – a partnership of 4 very bright entrepreneurs
who have started 12 companies in the last 3 years (some of which have failed,
two of which they’ve sold). I have a corporate background and started
doing what I love 3 years ago when my son got sick and I took a year off to
take care of him. Rainmaking brings some capital and know how, I bring my
sweat, passion and skills set (people and business development, networking,
Applications close end June
Runs from mid-August to mid-November
Investor Day is on November 16th