Bootcamps and acceleration programmes are an amazing way to pick up new skills, meet new people and develop new ideas, and you’ll find them in a variety of industries. Often, they serve for people to get introduced to specific disciplines, but they’re also known to be demanding.
While these programmes are a popular training and ideas development route in a plethora of sectors, they’re immensely popular in the world of technology. For instance, coding bootcamps are already widespread, and more are always popping up around the world.
There are also bootcamps available for entrepreneurs and businesses. In these contexts, they give individuals and groups a way to turn their ideas into viable business propositions. Often, they’ll last for a few days, weeks or months, and in this time, entrepreneurs are given the support to create promising start-up businesses.
Wayra is one of the world’s leading start-up accelerator programmes. Launched in 2012, it has helped to launch and grow more than 140 businesses in the UK and Ireland. So far, they’ve raised over $100 million in investment.
The Telefonica-backed programme is based in London, but in 2017, it’ll expand to the Midlands and North of England. Lasting for several months, it provides participating entrepreneurs and businesses with access to masterclasses, dedicated mentors, an investor network and high-quality office space.
Startup Weekend is another scheme aimed at accelerating growth in the technology industry. Run by American tech giant Google, it’s a bootcamp-style entrepreneurship competition that lasts for up to 52 hours. These competitions are run all over the world, including in London.
The premise is that entrepreneurs, creatives and developers come together to brainstorm potential business ideas. They then vote the best and are split into teams. Usually, they become early-stage start-ups, and over the weekend they’re tasked with developing a product and brand. Once they’ve done that, the participants pitch to a panel of judges, and the winner is given start-up funding.
While bootcamps tend to be quite broad, there are some that are dedicated for specific industries. Startupbootcamp runs tech and business accelerators for start-ups with different focuses, including the Internet of Things, fintech, smart transportation and digital health.
In total, there’s a family of 17 bootcamps, and they’re supported by mentors, partners and investors from all across the globe. Similar to Wayra, businesses are provided with support and resources to help them grow in the early stages. The program is backed by companies such as Intel, Amazon Web Services, Google and Cisco.
Brand Entrepreneurs is also worth checking out. First set up in 2016, the organisation runs bootcamps and training programmes to provide entrepreneurs with the skills and knowledge needed to launch and grow a successful business. It also hosts online workshops, and there’s a specific bootcamp for introducing companies to emerging technologies such as AI and IoT. Last year, it helped more than 2000 entrepreneurs in 6 global locations.
There are many accelerator and bootcamp programmes across the world, and Oxygen Accelerator is highly popular in Europe. It’s probably one of the more demanding ones out there, lasting for 13 weeks. Participants get intensive training in building and growing their start-up businesses, and they’re surrounded by experts and other entrepreneurs.
Admitting 10 teams per session, the organisation presents them with 21,000 euros in start-up funding, a collaborative work environment, access to 100 experienced business and technology mentors and 10 investors, and start-up freebies. Currently, the Oxygen alumni is at 46 businesses, all of which have completed the programme successfully.
While these are some of the best tech business bootcamp and accelerator schemes available, there are still plenty of others out there. Either way, they all have one common aim, and that’s to help grow a new generation of tech firms.