Business Incubators Programs Have Different Approches

Subtitle: How Qualified The Program Managers are in Selecting The Right Startups at the Right Stage

Business incubation programs have different approaches to the selection of startup clients. The success or failure of a startup in a business incubation program depends on how qualified the program managers are in selecting the right startups at the right stage. Four out of the eight startups mentioned that their business incubation programs did not perform formal due diligence because of two main reasons: 

They were newly established or the program managers simply believed that the product was in line with the program’s focus and competencies. None of those four startups received feedback or were evaluated by the program. It could be assumed, therefore, that incubation programs acted in their own self-interest when attracting new tenants and raising public awareness of their programs. This is especially applicable to university-based business incubation programs, which are more supportive and more inclusive in nature. SE4, who was co-founder of an incubation program, pointed out that demo days are only for community, to show that the program is still operating. 

Overall, entrepreneurs should be conscious that incubation programs are not always necessarily acting in the best interest of startups. Moreover, an incubation program’s admission process should be seen as an indicator of how seriously managers are taking a startup into consideration. Without due diligence on by both the programs and the startups, startups are at risk of becoming part of a program that is not necessarily valuable to them.

Services and offerings: General workshops, courses, and lectures about entrepreneurship were not found to be valuable

One out of the eight startups mentioned that general workshops and lectures about entrepreneurship were not found to be valuable. Startup B emphasized that it was a waste of time to participate in general workshops when the company needed financial resources to develop a minimum viable product (MVP). Without a functional prototype, startup B was unable to demonstrate their proof-of-concept. Despite spending one year in a university-based incubation program, startup B has not succeeded in developing a functional prototype. Thus, startups who are involved in the program can spend a lot of time working on secondary tasks, instead of focusing on primary ones. According to SE3, business incubation programs “keep startups busy with stuff which they don’t really need to do like presentations, instead of helping them with securing first customers.”

Services and offerings: Startups received low commitment from program mentors and advisors

Four out of the eight startups emphasized that they received low commitment from program mentors and advisors. Startup F gave an example in which the lawyer of their incubation program suggested not to file a patent application in China despite the company’s plans to expand globally and build a pilot plant in Hong Kong. Startup E has not received any support from mentors and advisors and wished there was someone to keep them accountable. Startup D, as with start-up E, has been left on its own. Startup H failed to leverage a sound marketing strategy and expected advisors to help them earlier in the process. SE2, who has also passed through a university-based business incubation program, indicated that some of the mentors were professors and a variety of mentors would have been more appropriate. SE4 mentioned that some entrepreneurs do not get appropriate help from incubation programs because that help is untargeted, as service providers are not interested in startup results.

Services and offerings: The incubation program did not meet the company’s initial expectations

Business incubation programs promise startups a variety of services. However, according to SE1, the quality of these services, and even their availability, might be in doubt. Such a situation happened to startup D and startup B. Startup D complained that the program managers promised to help with further product development, but their company never subsequently received such help. Startup B was totally disappointed with their program, as it provided only physical space and general workshops while the company expected to get help with acceleration, mentoring, legal advice, investors, and networking. Startup B was even willing to pay for services if the program was able to provide what they needed. Accordingly, startups should make sure in advance that business incubation programs will provide what they promised and what was expected from them based on the initial formal or informal agreements.

Services and offerings: Tangible services such as access to manufacturing capabilities were not provided or were limited

One of the reasons why startups join a business incubation program is access to office space. However, other tangible services such as manufacturing and prototyping capabilities are no less important. Startup F joined a program because of the potential access to prototyping labs. They emphasized that renting a lab can cost a fortune. Startup F developed a kit to test marijuana oils, but because they did not have access to a workshop, it became impossible to produce the kits. Startup A emphasized that existing manufacturing firms require a continuous production supply and are not interested in signing contracts with startups. In addition, startup A was not allowed to use the resources of the university incubation program for commercial purposes. Thus, it could not achieve a competitive advantage based on early prototyping. Startup C also noticed that startups who have physical products face difficulties in getting into contact with potential manufacturers. Startup G wished that the program facilities had a workshop, where they could test their product.

Network: Startups did not efficiently use the office space provided by the incubation program

The purpose of startups sharing the same office space is the opportunity to build relationships with peers. Startup H emphasized that sharing an environment with people who are going through the same challenges is very valuable. In fact, startup H established a partnership with another startup that was part of their incubation space – something that would not have been possible if they were not using the same physical space. In addition, startup H mentioned that, at a certain moment of time, the attendance of startup teams in the office space dropped down significantly, which reduced opportunities for collaboration. Startup B felt frustrated that only 2 or 3 startups out of 15 used the office space on a regular basis. Startup E also noticed that attendance of the startup teams diminished over time. After all, the entrepreneurs themselves started to question if there was a difference between using the incubation office space and working at home.

Network: The incubation program’s network was not aligned to the startup’s product

As was emphasized in the literature review, incubation programs provide more generic network resources and offer less idiosyncratic network resources, because it is not practical for a program to even try to address each potential startup’s every need. Accordingly, three out of the eight startups who joined a more general incubation program (i.e., with no specific sector of focus) stated that the program cannot help them with connections to strategic partners. Startup F needed access to pharmaceutical and chemical manufacturing industries in order to secure access to a valuable supply chain. Since the program network was not in line with their product, the startup had to build its own network. Startup A needed access to manufacturers and distributors in order to start commercial production. Since the incubation program did not provide the necessary connections, startup A considered finding a business angel with the right competencies and knowledge in the field. Startup D needed access to the automation industry in order to test a product and meet potential customers. However, the incubation program was more focused on the healthcare industry than automation. Startup D spent 10 months in an incubation space without any luck establishing the necessary partnerships in order to commercialize the product or even test it at a customer’s site. According to Mas-Verdú and co-authors (2015), business incubation environments are insufficient on their own and have to be aligned with other businesses characteristics such as technology, size (number of employees), and sector. In general, generic network resources are valuable only for those startups that do not know how to pursue their business idea. Startups who are looking for strategic partners in order to commercialize their product should join sector-based incubation programs.

Network: Startups were unaware of the business incubation program’s ecosystem

Sa and co-authors (2012) stressed that entrepreneurs cannot fully benefit from an incubator’s resources when those resources are not well coordinated. Two out of the eight startups mentioned that they were unaware of the ecosystem of the business incubation program. Both startups were part of a university-based program. Startup F found out about some of the existing resources, but only by accident. Meanwhile, startup E mentioned that the services provided by the program were not very well advertised. Startups who were unaware of the existing program resources started looking for resources outside of the incubation environment, which is a time-consuming process. Therefore, business incubation programs must make sure that their startups are informed about available resources.

Financial resources: Business incubation programs did not provide direct or indirect access to investment

To cross the valley of death, startups can use the resources of the business incubation environment to secure initial funding. Startup D had a proof-of-concept and was ready for investors. However, none of the investors from the incubation program’s network were willing to invest in it. After a few unsuccessful attempts to find investors, the incubation program stopped trying to help with investment search despite earlier assurances from the incubation program managers that startup D would receive funding from their investor network. Startup B was not ready for initial funding but needed seed money in order to finalize their prototype. The rest of the interviewed startups either were not ready for investors or they succeeded in attracting investors by themselves. According to Rijnsoever and co-authors (2016), non-incubated startups who have access to the same investors raise as much funding as incubated startups. Accordingly, being part of a business incubation space does not necessarily mean that a startup will receive funding or be connected to potential investors.

Equity: Equity taken by the business incubation program made startups unattractive to potential investors

Different business incubation spaces operate under different business models. Most of them are looking to promote regional growth, while others are focusing on generating financial returns from equity. Startup D joined an incubation space with high hopes of securing investors, potential customers, and product development in exchange for 38% equity. The incubation program did not help with product development and customers, but it was ready to charge the startup for other services. Startup D did not use any of the services, because the services were not good enough and were not worth paying for. As it appears, the incubation program adopted a for-profit property development model to charge a fee for services offered. However, the startup did not receive any investment through the program. The program only provided office space and connections to investors. In fact, most of the startups in this program received an investment from other institutions operating in the region and the program managers only advised startup D to approach them directly. On the other hand, the funding institutions were running government-initiated incubation programs that filled the gap of financing when nobody wants to invest in early-stage startups. Those government-initiated programs seemed to provide better, free, or much cheaper, mentoring and consultancy for startups.

On the other hand, SE3, who was involved in a government-led incubation program, mentioned that the program focused on taking startups at the point where they are ready for investment. SE3’s company never needed an investment because they used bootstrapping. According to SE3, the best exit strategy for incubation programs is when their client startups are acquired.

IP Protection: Participation in a business incubation program puts intellectual property at risk

Participating in an incubation program can put a startup’s intellectual property (IP) at risk because multiple entrepreneurs share office space, workshops, laboratories, and mentors. Startup F emphasized that their product and IP can be very easily exposed to third parties as everyone can access the incubation program lab and office facility. Since most incubation programs do not provide legal services and obtaining a patent is expensive, startups bear the risk of IP exposure. On the other hand, it is typically not the responsibility of the incubation program to protect their startup’s intellectual property.

Post-incubation: Following incubation, startups looked to join another business incubation program or sought business angels

Usually, startups go through several incubation programs to build or acquire necessary resources for their businesses. After spending some time at a university-based early stage incubation program in Ontario, Canada, startup E applied to join another one, because they were looking for more dedicated hands-on mentoring and business support focusing on growth. Startup B, in Denmark, applied to join a university-based incubator but the application was rejected because the program was for students only. As a result, startup B applied to a regional investment agency in order to receive funding. Startup A is considering finding a business angel who will help with distributors and manufacturers. Accordingly, when an incubation program provides idiosyncratic resources or limits access to complementary assets, startups start to look for those resources in other programs or try to find business angels. Therefore, startups should understand that graduation from an incubation program does not necessarily mean that they will be ready for the market or able to grow and scale-up.

Conclusion

This section summarizes the key insights gathered from our research and analysis. In addition, it focuses on results that can be used to improve an entrepreneur’s understanding of incubation programs. The analysis of the empirical observations resulted in the articulation of the following downsides of being part of a specific incubation program.

Equity dilution can lead a startup to bankruptcy. Startups who have diluted too much equity to an incubator or accelerator will struggle to convince investors to invest in them later. Every time a startup issues new shares, the existing shareholder’s equity decreases.

Startups can face low commitment from incubation program stakeholders such as business mentors, advisors, and external partners. External service providers are usually not interested in startups’ results.

Putting IP at risk. Startups who join an incubation program are risking exposing their product or idea to third parties that have similar access to the incubation facilities. Half of the interviewed incubation programs do not provide legal advice nor IP consultancy.

Young and inexperienced incubation programs do not do enough due diligence since, most often, their main goal is to fill spots and enhance their regional reputation.

Startups can be unaware of the business and innovation ecosystem of the incubation program. Some programs do not do a good job in advertising the expertise and knowledge of their networks. 

General workshops, lectures, and courses provided by incubation programs are time-consuming and not necessarily useful. Startups spend a lot of time working on secondary tasks instead of focusing on primary ones. For instance, an interviewed startup spent 12 months in an incubator and was not been able to build a functional prototype during that time period.

Incubation program networks may not align with a startup’s product. The majority of the incubation programs provided only general network resources.

Incubation programs do not usually provide seed money, investment, or connections to investors. In fact, being part of an incubation program does not guarantee any investment.

The collaboration opportunities significantly decrease when an incubation space is underutilized and only a few startups use the office facility.

Prior to joining an incubator or accelerator, startups should consider whether or not they would need specialized facilities/equipment. Most of the interviewed founders participated in incubation programs that did not have specialized facilities/equipment.

Startups may go through multiple incubation programs to acquire or build necessary resources. Therefore, startups who have not received necessary help or resources in a specific incubation program consider joining other programs or finding business angels with the right competencies for the startup’s context.

Finally, consider the differences between incubator-like and accelerator-like programs in the way they refer to startups that have used multiple incubation programs. The general tendency for startups using multiple incubation programs is to move from early-stage incubation to more dedicated acceleration programs. As a rule, university-based programs are focusing on early incubation offering young entrepreneurs the opportunity the experience of being an entrepreneur. In this sense, we should be careful when comparing the performance of incubators because their missions could be quite different. On the other hand, acceleration programs tend to focus on growth objectives and stronger investment exposure and opportunities. Even though early-stage incubators also claim to offer funding-related networking opportunities, their focus seems to be on the quality of the entrepreneurial experience and the validation of the viability of the emerging business opportunities.

In conclusion, it is not always a good thing for a startup to join an incubator or accelerator. Or, rather, there are multiple aspects of business incubation practices that could affect negatively early-stage companies, and founders of new ventures should be very careful when selecting a specific incubation program. The answer, of course, cannot be considered in black and white terms since the focus of the selection process should be on the interference of the multiple factors that could potentially affect the future of a startup in terms of operations, market potential, external funding, etc.

We believe that the analysis provided here will enhance the awareness of both researchers and practitioners about the potential negative impact of improperly selected incubation programs. It should enable executive managers of existing incubation programs to refine their startup selection process and better articulate the value propositions of their programs. At the same time, we should point out that our study is based on a limited number of cases. Future studies should build a broader empirical base by selecting a larger number of startups and more sophisticated methodologies, taking into account the distinction between the incubation programs, the stage, and the strategic goals of the new ventures.

startup accelerator indonesia

Launch Your Startup: 7 Essential Steps, Tips to Start

startup accelerator indonesia

Subtittle: Strategies to Start Your Start up

Everyone has ideas. Some of these ideas may be decent, while others are probably not so good. Even if your idea is great, there’s a big difference between having a great idea and creating a successful startup company.

Do you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur?

It will take hard work, dedication, money, some sleepless nights, and even some failure before you succeed. 71% of businesses fail within 10 years.

Once you get your company off the ground, you need to work just as hard to keep it going each year.

You can use this guide as your blueprint for launching your startup company.

1. Make a business plan

Having an idea is one thing, but having a legitimate business plan is another story.

In simple terms, a business plan is the written description of your company’s future.

You outline what you want to do and how you’re planning to do it.

Typically, these plans outline the first 3 to 5 years of your business strategy.

The business plan needs to be the first thing on your list because you’ll use it to help you with some of the remaining steps.

2. Secure appropriate funding

You’ll need adequate capital to get yourself off the ground. There’s no magic number that applies to all businesses.

The startup costs will obviously vary from industry to industry, so your company may require more or less funding depending on the situation.

For a small, part-time startup with no equipment, employee salaries, or overhead to worry about, it may only cost you less than $10,000.

Based on the graphic above, the vast majority of this money comes out of the entrepreneurs’ pockets.

The cost of doing business is much higher than people initially think.

Let’s circle back to our business plan for a minute.

All business plans contain a financial plan. This plan usually includes:

Balance sheet

Sales forecast

Profit and loss statement

Cash-flow statement

82% of businesses fail due to cash-flow problems.

You’ll use these financial statements to determine how much funding you need to raise in order to get started.

You may discover that the number is significantly higher than you originally anticipated.

3. Find investors.

Investors can be:

Friends

Family

Angel investors

Venture capitalists

Proceed carefully because you don’t want to start giving away significant equity in your company before you even get started.

The type of business you’re starting also influences the likelihood that angel investors and venture capitalists will be willing to give you funding.

If you find a potential investor, you need to know how to pitch your idea quickly and effectively.

You need to have your financial numbers memorized forwards and backward.

Refer to your business plan.

Make sure it’s presentable so you can give them a copy, but you also need to know how to successfully verbalize your startup strategy.

It’s imperative that your business plan has a proper executive summary.

Investors are busy and may not take the time to read through your entire plan if the executive summary doesn’t give them a reason to move forward.

Once you secure the appropriate funding, you can proceed to the next step of launching your startup company.

4. Surround yourself with the right people

You’re going to need some help while launching your startup company.

So where do you start?

Certain people often get overlooked when entrepreneurs are getting their business started.

Sure, you may realize that you’ll need some staff and a manager to help run your company. Is that it?

How many people do you need?

It depends on the industry.

Let’s take a look at an example from a study about the amount of employees for startup companies in the technology industry.

Based on this information, the vast majority of startup companies are small teams.

These numbers would be significantly different if you were starting a business in the restaurant industry.

You would need servers, a kitchen staff, bartenders, and managers.

5. Before you do anything, you need to register your business name.

Once your business gets registered, you’ll need to get a federal tax ID number, as well, from the IRS.

The IRS lets you submit your business information online to get your employer identification number (EIN).

You also need to consult with a:

Lawyer

Accountant

Financial advisor

Unless you’re an expert in law, finances, and accounting, these three people can help save your business some money in the long run.

They can explain the legal requirements and tax obligations based on how you structure your business.

Sole proprietorship

Partnership

Corporation

Limited liability company

While your lawyer, accountant, and financial advisors are not necessarily employees on your payroll, they are still important people to surround yourself with.

Don’t forget about insurance.

Shop around and find an insurance agent who can get you plenty of coverage at an affordable rate.

Now you can start hiring people within your organization.

6. Find a location and build a website

Your startup company needs a physical address and a web address.

Whether it’s offices, retail space, or a manufacturing location, you need to buy or lease a property to operate your business.

As you can see from the graph, leasing property for your business is significantly more expensive than buying.

With that said, it may not be realistic for all entrepreneurs to tie up the majority of their capital in real estate. You should strategize for this in your business plan.

Try to secure enough funding so that you can afford to buy property. It’s worth the investment and will save you money in the long run.

You also need to create a website. Don’t wait until the day your business officially launches to get your website off the ground. It’s never too early to start promoting your business.

If customers are searching online for a service in your industry, you want them to know that you exist, even if you’re not quite open for business yet.

You can even start generating some income through your website.

Once your website is up and running, you need to expand your digital presence.

Utilize social media platforms like:

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Snapchat

Your prospective customers are using these platforms, so you need to be on them, as well.

7. Become a marketing expert

If you’re not a marketing expert, you need to become one.

You might have the best product or service in the world, but if nobody knows about it, then your startup can’t succeed.

Learn how to use digital marketing techniques like:

Content marketing

Affiliate marketing

Email marketing

Search engine optimization (SEO)

Social media marketing (SMM)

Search engine marketing (SEM)

Pay-per-click advertising (PPC)

If you’re starting a small business in a local community, you can take advantage of some older and conventional methods such as:

Print advertising

Radio advertisements

Television

Billboards

While these methods can be productive, outbound marketing efforts are not as effective as they used to be.

As long as you’re doing these things, you’ll be able to fight through any obstacle your startup company faces in the future.

startup accelerator & incubator

What is a Startup Accelerator or Incubator Do to Help Startups Attain Success

startup accelerator & incubator

Subtitle: How Startups Attain Success with Accelerator or Incubator 

Are you ready to make your side hustle becomes your main hustle? Or maybe you’ve got an idea you just don’t quite have the details fleshed out. You may be considering an incubator or accelerator to help you get started. But what’s the difference?  And What is a Startup Accelerator or Incubator do to help startups attain success? 

Accelerators

Accelerators usually begin with a rigorous application process. Top accelerators like Techstars and Y Combinator are highly selective, accepting less than 2% of applicants into their programs.

Typically, the accepted companies have already demonstrated fast growth and a minimum viable product (MVP). They’re often given a small seed investment and paired with mentors from the accelerator’s vast network.

The goal of the accelerator is primarily networking, mentorship, and resource allocation to skyrocket the success of proven business ideas. A business’ time at an accelerator typically ends with a presentation sharing the growth and development they’ve achieved during their weeks or months in the program.

Things to Consider When Joining an Accelerator:

Is it the right time? Make sure you’re joining an accelerator at the right time. If you’re still searching for a co-founder or your first few employees, you may be a better fit for an incubator.

How fast or slow are you growing? If you’re a fast-growing company, an accelerator might be the right fit. If your growth plan is still developing, an incubator might be a better choice.

Will you relocate? Many accelerators require you to relocate for the few months you’re participating in their program.

Incubators

Some incubators select candidates through an application process while others only work with companies or entrepreneurs passed along from within their network of advisors. Some incubators are focused on specific verticals. For example, Monarq Incubator supports female-led startups through their programs.

Incubators also tend to focus on businesses or entrepreneurs from a certain geographic location — or require participants to relocate to their coworking space or local community for indefinite periods of time.

Participants spend their time at the incubator networking with other entrepreneurs, fleshing out their ideas, determining product-market fit, and creating a business plan. Intellectual property issues are also vetted and dealt with at this stage as well.

The incubator process usually lasts a few months — but is often open-ended — and ends with a pitch or demo day where the entrepreneur presents their business idea to the incubator community and/or investors.

Things to Consider When Joining an Incubator:

Do they have the right mentors? Make sure your incubator can offer specific and experienced guidance for your business or idea. The last thing you need is someone advising you on your shipping business idea who’s spent the last 30 years mentoring young restaurateurs.

Do you need funding now? If you’re looking for capital to grow your business, an accelerator might be a better fit. Incubators focus on preparing the entrepreneur or founder with the business model, plan, and mentorship necessary to confidently pitch their finished business plan to investors.

Can You Get By with a Coworking Space?

If funding, business savvy, and a proven business idea aren’t an issue for you, you might consider simply joining a coworking space. You’ll get the office space you need with built in networking opportunities and events. Some coworking spaces even help you outsource administrative tasks so you have more time to spend on the bigger tasks at hand.

Another benefit of joining a coworking space is that you don’t have to give away equity in your company. Incubator and accelerator mentors generally receive equity in exchange for their expertise. That’s not an issue with coworking spaces.

If you’re joining an incubator or accelerator, make sure you have clearly defined, actionable goals. And be honest about whether or not you can achieve those goals without joining an incubator or accelerator. The process for applying to and joining these programs is lengthy and arduous — and it’s time you could be spending getting your business off the ground without parting with equity.

-Incubators

An advantage of being a part of an incubator is that your startup business gets access to a wide range of financial capital alternatives. In addition, it also provides mentorship, networking, and expertise in your specific startup industry, as well as helps startups turn ideas into new businesses.

Sometimes these benefits can also be a disadvantage to incubators. Certain types of mentorships and networking with entrepreneurs may hinder the startup owner’s focus during the risky early stages of their startup and your idea might not always lift off.

Accelerators

On the other hand accelerators in general work extremely close with everyone involved in the startup, which is an advantage. Accelerators also match the partners and investors to fit with the chosen startup.

In accelerator programmes they also focus on the development of pilot projects for their startups to ensure growth and success. Accelerators try to provide a platform for the startups to grow fast while enrolled in the programme to increase the probability of receiving startup investment.

Y Combinator accepts about 1.5% to 3% of the applications it receives.

A disadvantage of accelerator programmes is that they are short-lived and won’t provide as much support as an incubator would over an extended period, however the short-term acceleration might produce better results in the long run. Another con is that these programs only accept a few startups every year and require equity in each startup they accept.

In the end, it depends on how developed your startup is and what type of support it will need to grow.

At a high level, startup accelerators and incubators are organizations that seek to help startups attain success. Startup accelerators tend to focus on providing startups with mentorship, advice, and resources to help the startups succeed, including a Demo Day, a day to focus the attention of the startup investor community on the startups through hosting a series of investments pitches from the startups to startup investors.

Accelerators tend to not offer dedicated office space to startups (and may encourage startups to find their own dedicated space), but may have a physical location for shared resources and accelerator events such as invited guest speaker talks and advising office hours. Incubators tend to offer dedicated office and development space to the startups for a set period of time.

Startup accelerators and incubators can get involved at all stages of a startup’s development, from idea stage to revenue-generating, late stage. However, most tend to focus on relatively early stage startups, as this is when companies can typically most benefit from outside help.

Startups are usually admitted in batches, with many incubators and accelerators offering 1-3 batches per year. Some focus on a specific industry, market, technology, stage, or other thesis, whereas others are more generalists. Most seek to run an application and screening process.

However, while a handful of accelerators and incubators have been very successful in helping startups attain success, being admitted to a startup accelerator or incubator is not a guarantee for success to a startup founder, and not a guarantee of a sound investment for a startup investment.

startup accelerator indonesia

Early Steps of growing Succesful Startup business with Help of a Startup Accelerator

Early Steps the application process is done in stages

Startup Accelerator | Building a startup business not easy in the beginning, that’s why you need help from a Startup up Accelerator. Here are steps on how to grow your startup business with help of a startup accelerator.


1. Application

 An application will ask for specifics on a startup’s idea, market, traction, team, and other aspects vital to success.


2. Assessment

 Promising teams from the pre-screening phase move on to be assessed for investability, revenue potential, and overall strength of the product/service offering.


3. Interview

At this stage the accelerator is very interested, but wants to know about the team, product and evidence of traction. The interview process typically takes 20-30 minutes. 


4. Evaluation 

Interviewees provide documents to prove their statements about revenue, legal standing, or any claims made about the company.


5. Acceptance

Upon completion of the final evaluations, the investment committee will meet to finalize where the funding will go during the 12-16 week program. Roughly 30-60% of the teams that made it to Assessment phase will receive funding.

6. Helpful sources to spark new ideas

Try and Find Inspiration in the World Around you


Sometimes you need a source of inspiration to spur that lightbulb moment. Try and find inspiration in the world around you. Here are four places to look for inspiration:

Study successful entrepreneurs. It’s hard to know where you’re going if you don’t know where the great entrepreneurs before you have been. Read origin stories and study successful business titans. How did they come up with their business idea? What advice do they have to up-and-coming entrepreneurs? Learn all you can before you embark on your own journey.

Use your smartphone. If you know you want to create an app, but you’re not sure exactly what you want to create, search through the app store. Search categories of interest. Do you notice whether anything is missing or how apps in that category could be improved?

Can you find similar products or services using search engines? The internet is incredibly helpful when it comes to finding products and services that you are in the market for. But have you ever searched and searched for something, and not been able to find it? That should be a tipoff of a potential opening in the market that should you act on.

7. Turn to social media. 

People on social media are often quick to identify issues and problems they have with current products, places, processes, etc., but few take the time to come up with a solution. Reading through people’s grievances can give you great insight into problems other people have that you can solve. Online review sites can offer the same.

8. Best practices for startup accelerators

Given the potential—but not the guarantee—of significant benefits from accelerators on local startup ecosystems and wider economic growth, it bears considering what works:  What traits and conditions make accelerators effective?

Recently, Brad Feld sat down to discuss the accelerator concept, and importantly, accelerator best practices.

Feld provides a number of useful perspectives, given his experience with accelerators, and so it’s worth noting a few of Feld’s “dos” and “don’ts” for accelerator design and operation:

Along these lines, Feld suggests strong accelerator organizations:

  • Understand what an effective mentor is and knowing how to effectively engage with them throughout the program’s duration
  • Have a good rhythm for the program that is absorbable by founders—don’t go too fast or too slow
  • Create awareness of the stress and conflict points among and between the various participants (companies, founders, mentors) that will inevitably occur throughout the program, and strategically channeling those into learning opportunities embedded in the program itself
  • Build a culture and network around the accelerator that feeds on itself and perpetuates a lifetime process of learning
  • At the same time, problems arise when accelerators:
  • Fail to have a clear view of the mentor dynamic—not helping mentors understand how they can be effective in working with companies.
  • Fail to set expectations at the outset around what the accelerator can do, and what is sensible given a company’s individual situation.
  • Fail to focus on the people, rather than idea (at TechStars the mantra is people, people, people, idea—the idea is the price of admission, the key thing is the people), because it is the people that matter most and will be lasting, while the idea will morph a lot.
  • Fail to understand how to scale their program (how fast do you want to grow? What is your strategy? To expand geographically? To expand the number of programs?).
  • Fail to have a point of view about what they are trying to accomplish.  Simply emulating what other accelerator programs are doing, for example, fails to understand that there is more than one approach.

Tip: Throughout the application process, write concise answers that leave room for future conversations. Create interest in your proposal but don’t try to answer every possible question.

Make it easy to access critical business information with links to slide decks, LinkedIn profiles, videos, references, and anything else you think would help investors realize the potential of your startup.

Useful for accelerator creators and managers, these watchwords should also be considered by state and local policymakers, university officials, and economic development leaders who are increasingly investing in or otherwise engaging in the establishment of new accelerators in U.S. cities.

The systematic information available about the impact of startup accelerators is as yet thin and fragmentary. Much research needs to be done to better understand the effectiveness of these programs and the broader impact they have on startup communities—particularly as national and regional authorities look to them as tools for economic growth.

However, early evidence points to the potential for substantial benefits. Done well, these programs can be effective at helping some of our most high-potential companies reach goals more quickly and assuredly. Perhaps more importantly, they have been shown to attract more investors and focus energy on the nascent startup communities that have been spreading throughout the United States, which will no doubt be critical for boosting high-impact entrepreneurship and hard-to-come-by growth in the future.

startup business

Knowing Startup Business and The Oppurtinity

Here are 10 of The Best Reasons for Starting Your Own Business

Deciding to start your own business is a leap of faith. It requires pushing out of your comfort zone and trying something new. If that idea excites you, why wait around? You’re ready to take the leap and be the CEO of your OWN COMPANY. It’s a lot of work and there are some risks, but the potential for rewards is huge. If you’re not convinced yet, here are 10 of the best reasons for starting your own business.

1. Each day at the office will be motivating.

When you’re working for someone else, it can be tough to find the motivation to do the best possible work. No matter how much work you put in, the owners of the company will get the ultimate rewards.

When you’re your own boss, you’ll find motivation at work every day. Following your dreams is exciting, and you’re in control of your own success. The day-to-day vitality of your business depends on you, so you’ll be driven to make each day as productive as you can. You’ll know that your own hard work and drive will help you reap the rewards, and that’ll keep the fire burning in your belly to make each day count.
 
2. You’ll be following your passions


Many entrepreneurs start their own business to follow their dreams and fulfill their passion. Following your dreams will fulfill you in a way that working for someone else may not do. You are in charge of creating your business from the ground up, so you can shape your company to be something you’re proud of and that you may even be able to pass on to your children as your legacy.

3. You can pursue social justice or support non-profits


One of the most fulfilling parts of becoming an entrepreneur is setting up your company for social gain. You can opt to support non-profits, charities, or community efforts with your profits. Or you can set up your business to solve a problem in your community or in the world at large – whatever your passion may be.

For example, consider Snowday, a company started by teach-turned-entrepreneur Jordyn Lexton. It’s a food truck, but it’s doing more than just filling the hungry bellies of passersby. Snowday employs young people that have been incarcerated (which makes it harder for them to find work) and helps them gain valuable skills and experience on the job. Starting your own business gives you a unique opportunity to make the world a better place.

4. You can achieve financial independence


Many people commit to starting a business with the dream of financial comfort. While it’s true that getting your company off the ground can take grit and result in some lean times while you’re getting started, the ultimate goal of being your own boss is cultivating financial independence. With determination and hard work, there’s no cap on how lucrative your own business can be. If you aspire to build wealth, there’s no reason why you can’t achieve that goal.

Starting your own business has several financial benefits over working for a wage or salary. First, you’re building an enterprise that has the potential for growth – and your wallet grows as your company does. Second, your business itself is a valuable asset. As your business grows, it’s worth more and more. You may decide to sell it or you may hold on to it and pass it down to your heirs. Either way, it’s valuable.

5. You can control your lifestyle and your schedule


Perhaps you’ve spent years in the corporate world and you feel ready to turn over a new leaf after years of reporting to a superior. Starting your own business can give you a more flexible lifestyle and schedule so you don’t feel like you’re running in circles on that corporate hamster wheel. You can opt to schedule meetings around your family schedule or you can opt to work from home – the sky’s the limit when you’re the boss. You still have to get the work done, but nobody’s looking over your shoulder making sure you do it their way on their time.

Starting a business is hard work, and that flexible schedule may not happen right away. Even if you’re working long hours, however, you know that you’re doing it for yourself and your family and not for a distant boss or shareholder.

6. You can start from scratch


This is your business! You make the rules. You’re not restricted by the standards and procedures of your boss or corporate culture. You can offer a product or a service that fits your vision. You can also build your company according to your own ideas. Maybe you’ve thought of a way to make processes more efficient. Maybe you want to make sure your employees get fair wages and family leave time. Whatever problems you’ve encountered in the working world, you have a chance to do something different with your own business.

Many entrepreneurs say that once they’ve sampled the freedom of being their own boss and calling the shots at running their own company, they’d never want to work for someone else again.


7. You’ll get tax benefits


Starting your own business takes funding and it may take some time to turn a profit, but you can start taking advantage of some substantial tax breaks right off the bat. Government programs support small business entrepreneurship and seek to reward these endeavors with impressive tax incentives. You’ll want to work with a financial planner or an accountant to make sure you’re setting up your business in a way that will allow you to get the benefit of these government programs.

Note that there are also a variety of programs aimed specifically at business started by women and minorities, so you may be able to get grant funding and other benefits to get your business off the ground.


8. You’ll have true job security


The stress of climbing the corporate ladder is real. You never know whether you’ll be promoted or whether you may be handed a pink slip – these life-altering decisions are in someone else’s hands and beyond your control. When you start your own company, you know you’re investing in your future and in your own job security. Moreover, should you choose to start a family business, you could be providing jobs for other members of your family, as well. Your destiny is in your own hands – no more layoffs in your future.

9. You’ll become an expert at a broad range of skills


Part of running your own business is learning to wear a lot of different hats, especially early on. You’ll have to pick up a lot of new skills, from HR decisions to inventory management to customer service. You’ll soon become a pro in your own industry, as well as a pro at a variety of new skills you’ll learn on the job. As your business develops, you’ll continue to pick up new knowledge and abilities. You’ll know how every tiny aspect of your operation works. You can’t get that kind of experience anywhere else.

As your business grows, you may opt to continue manning the helm for those tasks you enjoy – whether that’s graphic design or accounting – but you can outsource those tasks that you dread. You can also turn those skills to new tasks. Who knows? You may even want to start another business!


10. You can be creative


It’s up to you to decide what your business will produce, sell, or which services it will offer – that’s exciting! Rather than following the formula of those who came before you, you’re looking at a chance to develop a concept or an idea that nobody else ever has. Even if you stay mainstream with your product or service, each day as an entrepreneur allows you to find new, outside-the-book ways to problem solve. Innovation and creativity are necessary traits for a successful entrepreneur, and you’ll hone those skills daily.

Knowing that each day brings new challenges, exciting opportunities, and a chance to engage your passion is reason enough to start your own business. Knowing that you’ve decided to take control of your own future is empowering. What are you waiting for? The time is now!

startup accelerators

Most Succesful Startup Accelerators in The World, What are They Doing Right

Nothing is easy at the beginning. There are processes and struggles but we can imitate from what is done and the lessons shared by successful Startup Accelerators in The World.

1. Solving real problems.

Spenser Skates, co-founder and CEO of Amplitude, says that the most important factor for a startup comes at the very beginning: figuring out exactly what problem your customers need you to solve.

In the early days of a startup, founders need to prioritize talking to potential customers and really understanding their problem so that they can help solve it. In fact, customer feedback has remained essential to Amplitude’s product development and company success.

2. Staying focused 

Will Canine, cofounder and CPO at Opentrons, has taken his company through two tech accelerators. The first was Hax, a hardware-focused accelerator based in Shenzhen, China. Then, Opentrons was accepted to Y Combinator, which is really what put the company on the launch pad.

“Probably our biggest learning that comes with it is focus. Having clear, concrete goals and a strategy for getting there keeps everyone in the company on the same page, working toward the same thing. “Once you feel the clarity of this type of focus–and see the huge advantages in productivity and progress it gives–you will never want to work any other way.

3. Leadership, values, and culture set you apart.

Having a great idea is only part of the battle, says Fred Stevens-Smith, cofounder and CEO of Rainforest QA. To make your company truly impressive, it’s all about the human element.

Another thing Stevens-Smith appreciated about the tech accelerator experience was simply the networking, learning, and camaraderie that came built in.  being a CEO is hard. Building a company is hard. For everyone. It’s easy when you’re inside the founder journey to think that you’re exceptionally bad compared to your peers, so it’s crucial to see that other founders are experiencing the same rollercoaster as you are.”

4. Be intentional about figuring out how to scale–in all aspects of the business.

The eventual goal of any startup is to grow, of course. To Vivek Ravisankar, cofounder & CEO of HackerRank, buckling down and learning how to scale has been critical.

“Agility is important at scale. It’s easy to do this when you are a three-person company, but how do you do this, and make sure people are aligned with the company proposition and values, when you are 100?

“Hiring people at scale. The bar is extremely high for the first 10 hires. The most important part is figuring out how to maintain this bar at scale.

“Customer love. When you’re first starting out, it’s extremely important to make 10 customers happy. But how do you do this for 100 customers, 500 customers, 1,000+ customers?”

The earlier you start thinking about how to scale your company, the better you’ll be able to grow. “These lessons were very instrumental in the early days of founding HackerRank,” says Ravisankar.

5. Pay attention to what people want, not just what you think they want.

The more transparent you are about what you’re trying to create, the more time you’ll have to gauge the reactions of your target audience. Segment cofounder and CEO Peter Reinhardt experienced this during his time for program Startup Accellerators.

6. Lean on your mentors. When you’ve made it, pay it forward.

Startup founders may feel like they have to bootstrap their companies all on their own. But you’ll get further if you embrace the power of mentorship and learn from those who’ve gone through the process before you.

Challenges and Opportunities for Startups during the Covid-19 Pandemic in Indonesia

Since the year 2019, the covid-19 pandemic has left the country’s economy devastated. Based on an article shared by CNBC Indonesia, Indonesia’s economic growth was halted by 2.97% (YoY) in 2020. On the other hand, the government has been working recklessly on giving its citizens their vaccine jabs so that the situation will soon recover. Based on the health ministry data, by September 2021, it is estimated that the total number of doses administered is at 100.7 million doses snd it is still growing.

Startups have emerged as key drivers of economic growth and job creation and are often catalysts for radical innovation. Based on an article in voxeu.org, in the US alone, Young firms like startups account for about 20% of employment. They also create almost half of new jobs on average across OECD countries (OECD 2016). Additionally, innovation by young firms contributes significantly to aggregate productivity growth, accounting for half of it in the US (Klenow and Li 2020).

Startups accelerators and incubators see startups as one thing that keeps the economy in a country moving. Apart from that, HUB.ID, as a startup program in Indonesia from Kominfo, sees the challenges that are faced by them as well. From the information that HUB.ID gathered, here are some challenges and opportunities that are expected in the pandemic:

  1. Government Relaxation that is prone to corruption and fraud

In the era of a slowed-down economy, the government frequently gives relaxation or even incentives to the citizens. In Indonesia, it was implemented by programs like Kartu Pekerja and credit relaxations. UNDP sees the government effort forced them to move fast to keep up with the pandemic. This, in turn, might cause compliance, oversight, and accountability measures to be weakened, making them more vulnerable to fraud.

2. Unemployment

Startups, like mentioned above, account for 20% of job creations. Take a look at the numbers for Indonesia’s unemployment rate. Quoted by Kompas with Data from Badan Pusat Statistik (BPS) Indonesia, unemployed people reached 8.75 million people. The numbers haven’t gotten better enough. 

Startup accelerators, incubators, and business matchmaking like HUB.ID is aware that the youth have to keep bringing innovative ideas, thus creating startups that can be birthed through HUB.ID or other acceleration programs so that these startups can create more job in the future.

3. Support existing and the creation of new firms

Pivoting and being flexible is one the things that make a business win or lose. The existing businesses have to see this pandemic as an opportunity to change how things have been done before. According to VoxEU, “startups can help the constraints created by difficult health or economic conditions, and respond to changing preferences and needs.”

As for new firms, numerous successful innovative startups have emerged from periods of crisis. The likes of Dropbox, Airbnb, Whatsapp, and Pinterest are the best examples.

4. Business Sustainability

Young business owners often pursue sustainability. They care about the future and the environment, and that’s a fact. So investing in them through this period is critical because it means more future employment and can help the government address environmental problems. HUB.ID already thought this through and has a tailored mentoring system for Government solutions to tackle issues that may arise in the future.

So those are the challenges and opportunities we are facing in the pandemic. Remember, it’s all about perspective. Even in the worst of times, you can always find a silver lining. HUB.ID, with its business matchmaking programs, is ready to assist your post-seed startups! 

startup accellerator

The most successful startup accelerators in the world, what do they have in common?

startup accellerator

As most of you know, startup accelerators help connect startup companies and investors by doing business partnerships for periods of time. When a startup company has a plan for collaboration in its mind, it must have those ‘special’ criteria that act as requirements. The most successful accelerators must possess those criteria. Here are the top 5 standards compiled by the HUB.id team from various sources.

1. They focus on collaborations.

They usually focus on collaboration between mentors and founders. It is important to note that for a startup company to flourish, they create impactful partnerships. The mentor’s ideas with the founders are aligned, and they know they are here to change the world. 

Here on HUB.id, we’re looking for startups that have already acquired funding, so the mentoring that will take place will not be too basic. The inventors already had previous knowledge.

2. They strive for innovation.

They focus on innovation while staying true to inventors’ intent. Of course, they can pivot just a little but not do a drastic change because of a single accelerator’s needs. Here’s where integrity plays the most prominent role. You change, you waste.

3. Demo Days

The best startup accelerators routinely have their demo days where inventors can pitch their ideas to angel investors or investors in general. There are also days when inventors can learn the financial aspects of their business.

4. High Exit Rate

Numerous sources such as Forbes.com, gathering data from Crunchbase, ranked accelerators based on a metric called Exit numbers. According to betaboom.com, top accelerators like Techstar Boulder Accelerator even have an exit rate as high as 24.7%. One of the top accelerators, such as Y Combinator that birthed Reddit, Dropbox, and Airbnb for a total of 9.7% exit rate.

5. Transparency

According to an article by newswise.com, in an environment where inventors can communicate openly with mentors and fellow inventors, they can help each other out. When working in an open space together, it was initially believed there would be competition among inventors. It turned out it was unlikely that they would’ve competed amongst them.

So those are the five main criteria for top startup accelerators by HUB.id. Do you think there are more not listed here in the article? Let us know in the comment section!