Demo Day at FI Moscow

September 2, 2013, 19:00

On the evening of September 2nd the Digital October Center held a graduation and Demo Day for the first semester in Founder Institute Moscow, the part of international educational accelerator program.

Guests of the event met the founders of twelve new tech companies that in the space of three-plus months and with the assistance of the program mentors have gone from searching for an idea to developing it to understanding how to turn it into a business, pumping out the first prototypes along the way.

We would like to remind you that the FI accelerator’s kick-off at our center was announced in the beginning of the spring. This program is unusual in that the key to being accepted is not having an idea for a future company (that is something that can be found and developed later on within the accelerator), and instead the results of testing that determines whether or not a person has the talent to create a tech business. The second important aspect is that in order to be awarded status as a founder the participants must register their companies in the US by the end of the course.

Of the hundreds of applications, the creators of Founders Institute, an American project, personally selected 38. Two people received scholarships, while the rest paid $950, a sum that was both standard for all branches (there are already 42 around the world) and refundable if the participants chose to leave the project during the first week. Several of them did choose to do so after failing the first stress test: a sizeable and urgent assignment that had to be completed over a weekend.

The rest had 15 sessions with the FI mentors, who are successful local entrepreneurs, investors, representatives of infrastructure projects and experts in particular business processes. The meetings were held once a week from the beginning of May to the middle of August, with participants working on their projects independently for the rest of the time. Quizzes were also handed out during the educational part of the course, as the mentors evaluated the progress shown by the participants and the potential of their ideas. Weak concepts were then sent back to the drawing board or pulled from the program.

The majority of the participants had already dropped out by the middle of the semester. You can read about that here.

Only 13 founders made it to the finish line and created their own companies. Twelve of them are ready to shared their projects with a wider audience on September 2nd.

Founder Institute is a network of local accelerators that offer practical education and access to expertise for entrepreneurs. The program has been developing for the past three years around the entire world.

In that time the program has graduated 807 companies in which more than 5000 people are hard at work, and the FI mentoring network has grown to include over a thousand experts. Udemy and Getable are both Founder Institute graduates.

The Moscow branch of FI is the 42nd in the world and is supported by RVC and the Rusbase portal. Enrollment for the second FI Moscow group will begin in October and continue through the end of the year.

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