After reviewing more than 250 entries for the Big Idea Challenge, the participant pool was narrowed down to 12 winners and 48 runner ups. The promising ideas that have passed Round 1 have been attending presentations at Accelerator for the past two days as Round 2 of the process gets underway!
Upon entering into the presentation room Tuesday night, there was paper, sticky notes, and markers of all colours and styles strewn out randomly across the desks. The participants were asked (after a brief presentation by Frances) to fill out these sticky notes with assumptions they have about their idea and business plan. This was done so that other people, or even themselves, could challenge these assumptions. Challenging assumptions is an important step in forming ideas and startups as they can prevent an entrepreneur from correctly planning out his intended market, business plan, and marketing strategy.
With all these participants already past the first stage of the selection process, there is certainly still no time to take a break! Coming up in round two is a video submission where these companies are learning about how to create a 90 second pitch for their product through video. This stage of the process is already due next week!
During the second session of the Big Idea challenge, the participants were taught about a medley of topics useful for their businesses. A presentation by Digital Dandy (a video storytelling company in London) taught the entrepreneurs how to successfully market a high quality video.
Another presentation by Lois Ireson showed the participants what it takes to survive as a startup and how to become successful. With so many activities and information packed into the past days, these hopeful entrepreneurs are certainly getting a taste of the hectic workload to be expected from starting your own business.