The Block.IS Bootcamp was a 3-day event gathering 22 Block.IS Experiment Stage Innovators, and designed and carried into effect by CIVITTA, together with other Block.IS Consortium members.
These types of activities help teams to focus, master their product presentation, understand where the weak spots are. The mentors not only provide feedback and new ideas but can also introduce startups to potential customers in their professional networks. As a side benefit, these high pace discussions can help boost productivity and morale in these uncertain times that are particularly hard on entrepreneurs in their early days.
The Bootcamp falls halfway into the acceleration programme. The objective of this activity is to boost product development by sourcing feedback from a diverse group of mentors.
The major most significant outcome I had from the experience from the Block.IS Bootcamp was of the power that an extended network can provide to boosting entrepreneurs with the best tools to succeed in today's purely digital landscape. Through FinTechStage, in the 3 days provided – we were able to connect 11 different startups with 3 seasoned industry experts (plus me), themselves from the corporate, funding, academic, and entrepreneurial spheres, which we believe provided with an encompassing overview of the different resources that can be concentrated for the Bootcamp, and through a wider lens – to the Block.IS initiative itself.
As one of the mentors, I can confirm that the Block.IS Bootcamp was perfectly positioned and set up as a reality and status check for all the programme's innovators. Although having impressive technical backgrounds, experience, and passion to bring top-notch blockchain innovations to Europe, it is also important for Block.IS Innovators to realise that being a tech business owner requires more than just expertise in your craft. It requires an understanding of financials, forecasting, marketing, networking and all the other aspects that go along with turning your dream and idea into a viable business – and the Bootcamp was the place to be to comprehend all these matters!
Acceleration programme participants joined thematic workshops to discuss major trends in their respective industries, discussed PR strategies in the current noisy and information-heavy environment as well as changing business strategies in these turbulent times. Each team met with business, blockchain technology and their sector-specific mentors – 129 individual sessions in total – for short and powerful 30 minutes conversations.
The Bootcamp was a great experience and we did learn a lot. Moreover, certain speakers pushed us in the right direction. For example, we decided to base our digital marketing strategy on the PESO model, elaborated in the PR masterclass. And we wrote a compelling article about sustainability in our company and our product. We wish the sessions with the mentors were longer, as it’s impossible to derive real value in such a limited time. I would really like to have a co-creation session with a mentor in which we can solve one of the problems that a startup is facing.
After the Bootcamp, the teams will continue working with their assigned business mentors to finalize their product development as well as get validation from the market. In July, the 22 teams will present their upgraded products during the Demo Day event. Products having the most market potential will be selected for the final Commercialise phase and receive assistance in entering the market and attracting investment.