Prospective founders considering how best to realize their idea are often faced with the problem of how to finance it. Only few can cover the financial costs for building a business or first products with equity. Therefore, crowdfunding has become established as an alternative form of financing startup projects. But how exactly does crowdfunding work? Continue reading
Whoever dares to take the step of starting their own business from a business idea often has to rely on supporters and advocates. Especially in the search for capital, one has to convince investors of the idea and business model. But how to convince major investors and multipliers of the idea?
The most important step: The potential investor needs to get to know about the idea; the founders must introduce him to their business concept. In a very brief time, the investor should understand the idea and realize the market potential. This presentation situation is known as “Elevator Pitch”: In two minutes, at the most, the prospective entrepreneurs present their business idea, waking the potential investors’ appetite for a promising investment. Here, the decisive factor is the first impression that the entrepreneur leaves with the investor. In this important moment, the founder must succeed in selling his business idea and himself as good as possible and make the investor curious. If you believe the elevator pitch, the chances for an invitation to a follow-up meeting are not bad at all. In an in-depth discussion, the comprehensive business plan can then be submitted and the business idea discussed in detail. A well-prepared pitch is therefore the “entry ticket” to key contacts and opportunities for further development.
Starting your own business is always accompanied by a certain risk. Questions arise, such as: Can my business compete on the market? How to finance business expansion? Where do I get the necessary capital from? What do I do if my startup fails? For these reflections, the “Lean Startup” approach can help. It is now one of the common terms of the startup scene and is considered resource friendly and success oriented. But what is behind the now popular term and where does it come from?
The word “accelerator” often pops up in the founder scene. But what does “accelerator” stand for and what lies behind it?
The purpose of an accelerator for founders, as the word suggests, is to get founders to their destination faster.
There are two basic forms of accelerators. On the one hand, there are organizations or programs that have tasked themselves with supporting startups in a specific field or region. They run campaigns, competitions, mentor programs, and much more in order to promote startups, provide support with business building, build networks, and match mentors and investors with startups. The portfolio of well-known accelerators also includes offering spaces, such as co-working spaces. And example for this is the well-known German Silicon Valley Accelerator.
On the other hand, an accelerator is a coaching program within a specific timeframe for selected founding teams during an early stage. Throughout an intensive process, the founders acquire diverse knowledge, continue to develop their business model, and are often supported by an experienced mentor in doing so. Oftentimes, the teams present their output to investors at the end of the accelerator program and thus get the chance to attract funding.
The KIT Founders Forge and its partners offer a variety of forms of accelerator programs.