If you decide to apply via our video tool or submit a pitch deck, you probably wonder what we are looking for. First, we have some problem areas, which we hope entrepreneurship will solve. However, if you have a great idea which makes the world a better place, we definitely want to hear about it.
In addition, we collected five basic principles that we recommend to keep in mind when applying:
1. Be a great team: Rarely a start-up follows a straight path to success. We want to believe in you as a founder or founding team when things are not all bright and shiny. Just ask yourself: Could a group of randomly selected people solve the same problem? If yes: Why do you still win? If not: Why are you the right person to solve the problem? We want to understand which experience, skills, and unique insights you bring to the table.
2. Nail the problem: Ideally, you can boil the problem down to one sentence. Be as concise as possible and back your hypothesis with data. Make sure, that you really have nailed the problem. An example: If you want to build software to facilitate brainstorming, are you really solving the problem of brainstorming, or is the real problem you are solving to generate better business ideas? If you want to dive deeper into this topic, we suggest reading about the concept of Jobs-to-be-done.
3. Know your customer/target group: Again, be precise. Of course, we want to know if your idea has market potential, but in the first step it might make sense to show us just one person who has this problem. Proof to us, that you understand your customer better than you understand yourself. If you want to get an idea of what we mean, look at this early pitch of Tinder.
4. Solve the problem: Ideally, you have some indication that your solution is working. We don’t expect you to bring a full-blown MVP. On the contrary: The results of a fake-door test or reactions to a simple click-dummy presentation could be sufficient.
5. Think about monetization: Honestly, we couldn’t care less about your Q4 2023 forecast. Don’t waste your time building crazy Excel sheets. Instead, you should be talking to customers. Still, we want to see if you’ve wrapped your head around the finance topic:
How much are your customers are willing to pay?
How much does it cost to produce your product?
How much does it cost to acquire a customer?
Are there any other costs, affecting your contribution margin?
How much financing do you need to get up and running?
As always, there is no guarantee that you will get funding if you have all five, but from our experience, you increase the likelihood of an investment tremendously.
If you want to work with us, don't hesitate to apply for funding.