Organization:Techstars Startup Weekend
Techstars Startup Weekend is a weekend event where entrepreneurs with various skill sets--whether its technical, business, or creative--come together to share ideas, form teams, and launch their startups. The 54-hour event is designto help participants starting out with their startup ideas. For many participants, Techstars Startup Weekend is where their lives as entrepreneurs begin.
Since 2009, there has been over 4,100 Techstars Startup Weekend events in over 150 countries. Techstars Startup Weekend community consists of over 234,000 participants from all over the globe. Over 23,000 teams hasbeen created. 80 percents of these teams actually continued to pursue their startups after the events were over.
Techstars Startup Weekend sets a stage for the great talents in a local community to connect and innovate. These new connections may be the new co-founders, mentors, friends, or even investors. The event provides the participants with the resources they can use to explore what’s possible, where they will discover their passion for entrepreneurship. This is also a great opportunity for the participants to learn the art of bringing a company to life. A hands-on experience, trials, and errors is something no textbooks can ever teach.
Techstars Startup Weekend has a goal for the participants to start their businesses and continue working on their startups event after the event is over, or at the very least, become much more prepared for the chaotic world of startup. During the event, participants are surrounded by many amazing people, whether they are their fellow participants with the same passion, mentors/coaches who are there to guide them, or the judges who are there to give the participants the honest feedback. The participants also have the access to some of the best tools and resources at their disposal. This is an opportunity for them to take a big leap in learning to develop the best businesses possible. Overall, Techstars Startup Weekend is an amazing event that will put the participants on the path of success.
All Techstars Startup Weekend events follow the same simple, but effective model. On Friday, all participants are welcomed to pitch their startup ideas. Teams organically form around the top ideas, as determined by popular vote, and then it is a 54-hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. The weekend culminates on Sunday with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback.
Day 1: Meet, Pitch & Team-up
The first day of the 3-day event starts with a dinner, networking opportunity with fellow participants, and sharing of ideas. After a couple ice-breaker activities, each attendee will get the opportunity to pitch their ideas in 60 seconds to the crow. What follows is an idea voting process where the top ideas will be the bases for the teams that are competing throughout the weekend. Teams are formed based on individuals skill sets and interests.
After the teams are made, they are shown to their workspaces where the environment is ideal for productivity: brainstorming, visualizing ideas and researching.
Day 2: Learn & Work
The second day of the event immediately picks up from where the first day was left off. Day 2 is all about market validation, learn, and pivot. The teams are asked to come up with the best minimum viable product (MVP) by the end of the weekend. Mentors/coaches are there to give the teams advice and guide them in the right direction. Participants are strongly encouraged to step outside of their working space and go out to talk to their potential customers to gather as much information as they can about the needs that their products are addressing, so they can be addressed effectively. This is the time for the times to refine their business model or pivot, should changes become necessary.
Day 3: Present & Choose
The last day is when teams start to finalize their business plan models and begin preparing for their final 5-minute pitches. The beginning of the day is the time for the team to gather any more information that they need in order to build a minimum viable product. Mentors will also be there to help them with the pitch decks and presentations. This is usually the most stressful day in the 3-day events, as teams are crunched on time.
The Sunday evening consists of a dinner event, an introduction of the jury panel, the well anticipated final pitch, and a wrap-up party.The 5-minute pitch is presented to the crowd and the panel of judges. These judges are big-profile business professionals, industry experts, investors, etc. For each team, after the 5-minute pitch, the question round follows. The jury panel then picks the winning teams as well as giving critical feedback for the startup teams, so they can improve in the future. Besides the traditional first-second-third award format, some teams may win other awards such as a crowd-favorite award.
What comes after the pitching rounds is the celebration. After 54 hours of intensive brainstorming, talking to customers, refining business model, and practice pitching, the participants come together to celebrate all the work that they have done. They will also have an opportunity to network with the judges, mentors, the press, the event organizers, and other participants.
Techstars Startup Weekend has teamed up with different companies to provide the Startup Weekend Attendees the best resources including Google, .CO and Appear.in. In addition, participants will have access to discounts and offers. For more details: http://startupweekend.org/attendees/resources