For an entrepreneur, making the leap from a 9-5 to fully immersing yourself in your startup’s vision can be one of the most intimidating moments of your life. But what if you had help determining whether your idea was viable before you make that life-altering jump? One rapidly-scaling startup is putting a program in place to help new founders do just that.
The Finnovation Studio, the brainchild of the team behind cybersecurity startup Trust Stamp, will provide a crash course “Startup MBA” that will help entrepreneurs decide if the startup life — long hours, uncertainty, the difficulty of customer discovery, etc. — is for them.
“Unlike accelerators or incubators, most of our participants will be aspiring entrepreneurs who are in graduate school or maintaining a regular day job,” says Trust Stamp co-founder Gareth Genner. “We expect participants to commit nights and weekends on the curriculum and practicum. Most importantly they will have the benefit of experiencing the Atlanta Tech Village community to help them grown and learn.”
The Atlanta Tech Village-based studio will also partner with European software development company 10Clouds. The growing company recently set up shop in Atlanta (in Trust Stamp’s ATV offices, at the moment) as their first office in North America. 10Clouds offers web and mobile development and UX/UI design to startups to bring their product vision to life.
That product expertise will be essential to the entrepreneurs enrolled in the studio. “I really like the idea behind the Finnovation Studio,” says 10Clouds CEO Maciej Cielecki. “On one side, it’s about the education of fresh entrepreneurs and helping them grow and on the other side, it might actually breed a future unicorn.”
The studio will begin accepting applications on April 3 to fill in a max of 20 applicants. It will focus on startups within the FinTech, Blockchain, and Digital Identity industries.
“Many people believe that in order to become entrepreneurially minded, you must be born with the mindset or be lucky enough to stumble into,” says TrustStamp co-founder Andrew Gowasack. “The reality is that while entrepreneurship is not a science, there are established methodologies that can be learned and more importantly practiced. We want to share this structured approach with other hopeful entrepreneurs.”
The curriculum will be comprised of three sequential modules: how to create a lean canvas, customer discovery, and building a prototype with the 10Clouds team. Each module begins with an online learning and research portion followed by practical application.
“We are fortunate to have the Finnovation Studio already funded and we are thrilled that the 10Clouds team has committed to support prototype development,” says Gowasack. “The studio presents a unique opportunity for aspiring Atlanta entrepreneurs to test not only the merits of their ideas, but to explore the innovativeness of their mind and their grit.”