Launchpad Verdict

Challenges, cooperation and the four newbies to join :agile crew

24. August 2017 Düsseldorf

Same same but different – this is how the last Launchpad felt for us. Again hosted at Super7000, it was not only a week long boot camp to help startups develop their business ideas, but also a selection tool for :agile team.

The Launchpad emphasized the need for cooperation between companies, startups and municipalities. Honored by a visit of prof. Andreas Pinkwart, the Minister of Economy, Innovation, Digitalization and Energy of NRW and Rainer Matheisen, his spokesperson for Innovation and Founders, participating startups had a chance to discuss the current challenges in the energy industry. Emphasizing the need to enhance collaboration amongst corporates, startups and private businesses, the minister expressed his wish to strengthen innovation ecosystem in NRW.

Seeking to innovate energy industry in order to overcome its current challenges, 12 startups spent 5 days drown in intensive training and one-on-one mentoring sessions that focused on four critical topics: product strategy and business development, user experience and user interface, technology, marketing and product presentation. Shaking every single idea, the mentors challenged not only business models themselves, but also founders’ determination, passion and ability to receive feedback of any kind.

All startups worked for the same goal – to do a final pitch that opens the door to the accelerator program. However, not that kind of pitch that we are all used to. This time startups did not pitch their product, but rather their progress during the week. Critically evaluating themselves, they presented challenges, difficulties and most importantly learnings of the week.

After weeks of discussions the final verdict was taken – out of 12 startups attending the Launchpad, 4 projects will start their 3 months journey with :agile. Impressing the mentors and the team, Cantiero, Platio, WWMove and Gridhound were granted the chance to be a part of :agile family.

Good start is half the battle, they say. If that proves to be truth, our new startups are on a very good track.

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