Should your business idea sink or swim? Is your new customer segment viable? Is your company a few years old and need to refocus? Find out in 10 weeks with Co.Starters!
What is CO.STARTERS?
CO.STARTERS is a platform to help communities grow local business. This ten-week program equips aspiring entrepreneurs with the insights, relationships, and tools needed to turn business ideas into action. True to our nature as Lean Startup founders, CO.STARTERS applies lean business modeling methods to help new and existing entrepreneurs validate their business idea.
10-15 participants enter into a facilitator-led, collaborative process with a small and supportive group of like-minded peers. Working together, participants identify their assumptions about why and how their businesses will work, and then talk to customers in order to validate their ideas. This approach enables entrepreneurs to rapidly uncover flaws in their concepts and find viable models more quickly. Participants leave the program with a deeper understanding of how to create a sustainable business, articulate their models, and repeat the process with the next great idea.
The Challenges of early-stage businesses
Who are my customers? What do they want and what are they willing to pay for? Will they like my product? And if so, how do go to market, promote my product and scale my operations? The life of an early-stage founder who has the ambition to scale his/her business is a riddle that can only be solved through human-centered design and testing, testing, testing. Based on the lean startup method, The CO.STARTERS program guides entrepreneurs through the process of customer discovery, prototyping and validation and introduce them to the basics of launching a company, new customer segment or rediscovering your customer's needs.
The Co.Starters Philosophy
How We Define Success
After ten weeks, participants will have:
A deeper understanding of how to create a sustainable business, i.e. a repeatable method to figure out whether or not an idea is good and how to change it to make it work.
The ability to articulate how their business works.
A roadmap of next steps to help you move forward.
A community of peers, mentors, business services and a network of support.
Program Dates & Fees
The program fee is $500 for every participating founder. The fee includes course materials, a 10-week full-time coworking membership at 804RVA, bi-weekly office hours with four different mentors, networking opportunities, collaboration with other entrepreneurs, business model canvas template, and introductions to mentor networks upon program completion.
To run a great program that all participants benefit from, we are rely on sponsors to cover costs for space use, facilitator training, licensing fees, a final event as well as admin support.
*If more than one person per team joins, the only additional fee will be additional course materials as needed.
The program will run weekly on Thursday nights for 10 weeks. Participants will be expected to meet with their mentors via phone or in person weekly in addition to the schedule session.
Applications open Spring 2018
Phone Interviews will be conducted to select the final 20 participants for the program.
THANK YOU! To our sponsors that help make this program happen.