According to the internet it’s thousands of startup accelerators programs & incubators out there, looking for the most talented startups to accelerate.

What started with Y-combinator back in 2005, was followed by Techstars, 500 startups and a couple of thousand other organizations which now all are competing for the same talent, according to Angel Garcia, director of Startupbootcamp IoT, Data & Cybersecurity in Barcelona.

It’s turning into a very crowded space, it’s much harder to find good startups for every round we do.

He continues:

Online I’ve seen lists of thousands of so-called accelerators. Many of them provide mentors, a table to work at and other perks, but they don’t run sustainable businesses.

From the left: Angel Garcia (Startupbootcamp) Patricio Hunt (Intelectium) & Bernat Farrero (itnig).

The business model

Just like venture capital investors, both accelerators and incubators are betting on a large volume of projects, and hope one out ten get’s a big exit.

That’s why it’s hard to say exactly what accelerators that are successful and which that are failing, says itnig president Bernat Farrero and points to the business model:

In practice, we’ve had virtually no time to see any of this models succeed just yet, even the few biggest ones have kept growing their expectations and none has yet consolidated and shown a real business success case.

Unlike most accelerators that are funded by VC’s, Startupbootcamp is funded by corporations that all get access to the products the different startups are creating, according to Garcia.

We’re different from most of the accelerators out there. It’s not only our business model, but 82 percent of our startups that have gone through our program is still going, and that’s a high number.

Evolving into venture builders?

Both Farrero and Hunt used to run accelerator programs, but later chose to leave the space to dedicate a deeper focus on fewer projects.

President Farrero explains that itnig didn’t find it sustainable to have a large number of startups go through a fixed program:

If we look at all of the accelerators today, both the ones we call successful, and all the others, I’ve never heard of anyone being profitable.

Startup studios or venture builders has been gaining more and more tractions lately, with studios like eFounders, Betaworks, Idealab & itnig pumping out new companies annually the last years.

Also Patricio Hunt, managing partner at Intelectium has been transitioning over to an approach of building talented teams, instead of accelerating already existing startups.

We have, as Farrero, evolved into more of a venture builder the last years. We study the markets, talk with corporations and possible future customers, and create products we know are needed.

Talent-focused

Farrero says their approach has changed drastically the last years, they now focus on finding makers:

Instead of using valuable time on accelerating tons of projects, we are using that time to study the markets and current trends, as well as attracting the best talent to come work for us.

Even though Startupbootcamp is working with a different business model, also Garcia stresses the importance of knowing your markets.

As we work in industries where everything is changing very fast, we need to understand the markets better than most people do.

The amount of accelerators getting started is not decreasing, but as the amount of programs increases, the less credibility the accelerator gets.

All the three directors agree that the few accelerators with an established brand will survive, and so will the ones that have implemented sustainable business models, but the rest will have to pivot or innovate into something new, something startups actually need.

To get the full interview, go to the video in top of the article.


The post was written by Sindre Hopland, media manager at itnig.

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W.

WHY YOU SHOULD CONSIDER A COWORKING SPACE FOR YOUR STARTUP

Your home office or a coffee shop won’t be enough!

Yes, we all know the tale about the guy who starts a small company in their garage or basement, has a brilliant idea and becomes the next Steve Jobs. It’s true, most successes have very humble beginnings. It’s also true that not all garage or basements are going to magically get you a successful business. They might work in the very (veeeery) early stages of your startup, but you can’t always meet a client at coffee shops, not to say your basement. 

A great, if not the best, solution is to find a coworking space. Coworking spaces have become very popular all over the world, either for freelancers or entrepreneurs and startups. 

Coworking spaces are not just big rooms with desks and chairs with high-speed wifi. The areas are made to be exciting places to work and improve your productivity.

As a startup, you need to find resources fast and affordably. More importantly, you’ll need motivation. This is why you should consider a coworking space. 

Here are some basic but amazing benefits from coworking spaces:

Community

Joining a coworking means joining a community.  Being surrounded by other entrepreneurs, freelancers and talented independent people is without doubt a one of the best features of a coworking.

Motivation is key when starting a new project and trying to develop your own business. The road will get though and you’ll appreciate other entrepreneurs’ vision and support! Other workers’ feedback can be very useful to improve your service/product before trying to sell it to the world. 

Networking, networking and…networking!

As a startup, you’ll be looking for networking opportunities. Most coworkings host professionals from different kind of industries, which can open up many doors for you and your business. Not all coworking spaces are about networking, some of them prefer to have a quiet individual work environment, so as a startup you have to make sure to choose a coworking with networking opportunities.

At Itnig, for example, we love to share ideas and support other entrepreneurs. Don’t be shy, some of the other coworking tenants can bring great business opportunities, or even become new clients (and friends)! 

Budgetfriendly

As entrepreneurs (or people for that matter) it’s very important to understand the importance of money, more specifically: budget. Tight budgets call for smart spending. Coworkings are usually budget friendly, most of them offer different membership options depending on your startup’s needs and budget.

Amenities 

A coworking provides you with everything needed to be as productive as possible. High speed internet connection, printers, conference rooms and COFFEE. Some coworkings even plan afterwork activities and events to make it all more fun! As a startup, a coworking space is your best chance at having all the basic amenities but also the fun ones, like a ping pong table or a nice chill out terrace. 

Happy clients

As you grow and have more clients, it can get messy if you keep meeting them in coffee shops. Coworking spaces offer office services such as conference rooms. That way your meetings will be more professional and comfortable for everyone. 

Barcelona is a city full of coworkings of every kind! Our Itnig community keeps growing, we now have up to 20 startups such as Andjoy, Classlife, Factorial and Freeverse, all under the same roof. We have afterwork activities and we also plan different kinds of events open to anyone interested in marketing, tech stuff, entrepreneurship and design. Our space is about 2.100m2 with up to 800m2 of conference rooms, events space, ping pong and fun activities. 

There’s also  wifi, endless coffee and talented people. Join us!