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News & Analysis

Startmate is on the hunt for the founders of the future with a new fellowship program

- May 21, 2021 2 MIN READ
The Blackbird team. Photo: Anna Kucera
Startmate is launching a new Founders Fellowship program to unearth and support the founders of the future in Australia and New Zealand.

The 20-week program, which kicks off in July 2021, and is seeking people who want to found a company, rather than work for one, but don’t know what happens next.

Sascha Kerbert, Head of Startmate’s Accelerator program, said they’re looking for ambitious people with an idea that keeps them awake at night, need someone to share the ride with, guide them and help turn it idea into reality.

“Regardless of whether you’ve dabbled with entrepreneurship, worked at a big corporate, worked at a startup or have a technical background, if you have a deep-burning desire to build a business, we want to help you unleash your potential,” he said. 

Kerbert said the Founders Fellowship will focus on maximising the number of opportunities future founders have to identify problems to solve, test ideas and relationships, and accelerate early progress on traction, hires and funding, and dismantle barriers to starting a company.

“The Founders Fellowship program serves a uniquely hard-to-reach identity of talent. Scouting the founders of tomorrow, surrounding them with a group of equally talented and ambitious peers, and giving them the network and tools they need to succeed lays down the groundwork for the future success of our start-up ecosystem,” he said.

“Ultimately, we want Startmate to become the best place across ANZ to build a company, whether you’re at the idea stage or scaling to tens of millions in revenue.”

The first Founders Fellowship cohort will begin alongside Startmate’s Student Fellowship. That free two-week virtual bootcamp for university students is designed to give them a taste of start-up life and access to Startmate’s global community, plus access to paid internships with top local startups.

The Founders and Student Fellowships sit alongside Startmate’s Women Fellowship, which has seen 136 women complete the program to date73% of whom are now working in the start-up ecosystem (65% as operators, 8% as founders). 

Startmate Principal Lauren Capelin said the Fellowships attract talented individuals looking to break into the startup ecosystem.

“This is crucial to the health of our startup ecosystem because it not only acts as a talent pipeline, but also nurtures a new generation of innovation and potential success stories for the region,” she said.

“Ultimately, we want to spearhead a ten-fold increase in the number of founders, operators and investors building world-changing companies.”

Applications for the Founder Fellowship close on June 6. Apply here.