Startup Reykjavik is now open for applications

For the fifth year in a row, Startup Reykjavik will be held during the summer of 2016. Iceland’s first seed stage, mentor driven accelerator is again on the move. We’ve just opened up for applications and the deadline is March 31st.

The long term view

By no means is it given that an accelerator is financed and executed. Maintaining a program like an accelerator is a long term project. Most or all ideas are in the seed stage, meaning that there are countless obstacles to overcome before the “right” business idea and model are found. Not to mention to obtain all the customers to drive revenue and further into the future lies a potential exit for founders and investors. Or maybe there won’t be an exit at all because the founders want to build a huge company. Along the way, many teams / companies will vanish, some linger in their hope of sustainability or growth. The selected few will flourish. And if we’re lucky, a star will be born. This is the risk in financing an accelerator. A very long term view on people and their aspirations.

We look for highly driven teams… and then some

What kind of ideas or teams do we look for? The formal answer is this:

“Startup Reykjavik seeks companies that are not limited in geography in regards to their customers”.

In real words, this means scalable business ideas/models that are not limited to any single market. Yet, experience tells us that the business idea only counts for a fraction of success. Ideas need execution and it is people who execute. Therefore we look for committed and driven people whose dreams are to not only maintain a living, but improve the world with their products or services. Or just make the world a little cooler.

Ideas can range from design to FinTech solutions, from software to hardware, from gaming to pharmaceuticals. And so on.

We encourage women to apply to Startup Reykjavik

Since the 2012 inception of Startup Reykjavik, women have always been in a minority of both applicants and participants, although the ratio has improved over the years, ranging from 12% – 30% – one may measure participation either in terms of individuals or whether there is a female in a team. My figures represent individuals). Generally, women’s participation ratio has reflected their application ratio. I do not have a firm explanation for why fewer women apply, but I would personally like to see that change.

Therefore, I encourage women to apply for Startup Reykjavik.

For those interested, these are the teams that have had female participation over the years in Startup Reykjavik:

  • EskiTech (2012)
  • Aevi (2012)
  • Herberia (2013)
  • Þoran Distillery (2013)
  • Another Creation (2013)
  • Zalibuna (2013)
  • Inspirally (2014)
  • Mulier (2014)
  • SuitMe (2014)
  • Spor í sandinn (2015)
  • Ludis (2015)
  • Elsendia (2015)
  • hún/hann )2015)

For the data driven, see other key figures about the accelerator.

Ample time for sending applications

As said before, the application deadline is March 31st. Mark it in your calendar. You have plenty of time to think through your application. If in doubt whether to participate, don’t even think. Just send in your applications. It’s as easy as one, two, three and is done via startupreykjavik.com (Apply button on the home page).

Startup Reykjavik has proven to have become an important part of the Icelandic startup community. It’s a place where founders have the chance to improve their business models via a comprehensive network of mentors, other entrepreneurs and investors. I look forward to work the 2016 cohort.

Full blast ahead!

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