New Program Offers to Elevate Startups for International Expansion: Venture Elevator
- US Embassy in Georgia
- Ilia State University
- Startup Grind
- Innovation and Technology Agency
- Project “Paving the Way to Knowledge-based Economy: Enhancing University Research and Entrepreneurial Skills in Georgia”
What is it?
Venture Elevator is a program to help startups learn, grow and have better chances of succeeding internationally. It is built around an 8-weekend series of trainings, working-sessions with mentor support and startup development including competitive pitching
Who is doing it?
The program is sponsored by the US Embassy in Georgia and Georgia’s Innovation and Technology Agency, Startup Grind, and Ilia State University
It is being led by a team of respected startup founders and mentors:
- David Chechelashvili, successful founder of startups in US
- Colin Donohue, marketing and business strategy consultant from US
- Giorgi Tukhashvili, Co-director of Startup Grind Tbilisi and startup founder
- Nikoloz Gogochuri, Startup Founder and mentor
- Nato Chakvetadze, entrepreneurship academic at Ilia State University
- Ketevan Darakhvelidze, Head of Development Office/US Embassy Programme Manager
- Avtandil Mghebrishvili, Manager of Fablab Iliauni
- Goga Saatashvili,Business Expert at Fablab Iliauni
- Teona Bebia, Pre Accelerator Manager at Zoomout Pre Accelerator ISU.; Patent and Licensing Associate at Technology Commercialization Office (TCO).
6 guest speakers and mentors from more developed startup ecosystems will come to Georgia to deliver seminars and directly mentor Georgian founders
How is it different?
There are many programs for startups in Georgia now. This one brings the strongest team of local and international mentors together to help teams be ready to succeed at a higher level. We don’t want to “sugar coat” things. Succeeding in a startup is hard. Companies need to get beyond the level of the Georgian market and ready to compete internationally. We hope to “get real” with startups and push founders to be better, work harder, and really be ready to compete at a higher level.
How can I learn more and apply?
There will be in info session at Terminal coworking space on April 21st, 7-9 PM. This will be an opportunity to hear about the course, ask questions and meet mentors involved with the program.
April 30th is the application deadline. You can apply at https://ventureelevator.ge
May 17th the launch of the program for selected startups
Who should participate?
Are you a startup wanting to go to next level?
Do you wish you had experienced mentors to talk with about your challenges?
Do you want to increase your chances of succeeding beyond Georgia?
Do you wish you could get honest and tough feedback from experienced advisors?
If you have a startup team and are ready to learn and grow and be part of a community of motivated founders this may be for you. You will need to be ready to hear critique, prepared to do hard work and grow, and ready to discard your idea if the data indicates you should do something different.
The Venture Elevator Process
Two weekends/month there will be intensives for learning and working on the startups.
- Before weekend intensives teams will have background readings and videos about the weekends’ topics
- Saturday morning will be a lecture, discussion, seminar or other high-level information for teams to reflect on and apply to their projects. Saturday afternoon teams will work with mentors on the topic.
- Sunday there will be open workspace for teams to work together, with local mentors by-appointment.
At certain stages teams will pitch to continue to the next stage, demonstrating their startups have been developing to a good level. Mentorship resources will be available throughout to help teams progress. There also will be some special opportunities and prizes for top teams in these pitch competitions, such as participation in Web Summit.
Apply April 30 for the Venture Elevator program with up to 60 hours of mentorship & coaching as well as pitching opportunities, international contacts and more valued at $4500 given to Georgian startups free sponsored by the US Embassy.
Make Your Move!
The main lesson of startups is to move forward, learn, try things, and grow. Only by trying things, experimenting and learning can you grow a great company.
Take advantage of this opportunity to benefit from local and international mentors to help accelerate your learning and growth!
Attend the April 21st Info Session 7-9 PM @ Terminal Coworking
Apply for Venure Elevator by April 30th, and make this you year to grow your startup!