And it is not just because we coincidentally went on a startup tour this summer. Entrepreneurship is more tempting than ever thanks to the infrastructure and system in place today. If you have a brilliant idea or not, it doesn’t matter anymore. There is support available for any and every kind of profile that was not possible just few years back. Here, we try and jot down reasons (and super cool start-ups) that got us excited about being an entrepreneur, and hopefully excites you too.
- Capital: Let’s kickstart with some real numbers. Year of 2018 saw an all-time high of VC funding of $251 billion globally. This year, at least in US the trend already seems to be on its way to beat 2018’s $117 billion (1). Capital investment aside, if you are afraid of leaving your job and stable income, there are accelerators providing comfortable monthly stipends to get you started. Letting go of your current job/ job offer in pursuit of entrepreneurship has never been easier.
- Not only capital: VCs are starting to provide not just capital but also business support ranging from marketing to data management to strategy (likes of Project A in Berlin, Atomico in London). This is if you have an idea that they are willing to bet on. If you don’t, that’s not worry either. There are numerous accelerators such as Antler (met in London, but present globally) that are investing in people and teams first before brainstorming on ideas, providing mentorship and connecting them to VCs. So, if you believe you are cut out for the world but missing the big idea, there are plenty of opportunities for you still to take the plunge.
- Climate Change and Fashion: We all know by now that we don’t have enough resources to sustain all of us and it is going to get worse. Much worse. Nothing we are used to will stay the same. Clothes that we wear, food that we eat, way we use energy, land… anything and everything will change. And this is precisely why entrepreneurship and innovation are desperately needed now more than ever.
Fashion industry in particular is in a phase that energy sector was 30 years ago. Said to be the second most polluting industry in the world, it desperately needs a big overhaul of not just existing practices, products and supply chain but also that of customer behaviour. Here, we briefly introduce you to start-ups that are aiming to do just that.
Circular Fashion: Based in Berlin, Circular Fashion is the winner of H&M’s global change award this year. It provides expertise and support to designers and big corporates to move towards a regenerative system through their unique “circular IDs”. This digital tag provides transparent information to users and sorters to ensure closed loop recycling. Learn more about them: https://circular.fashion/
Colorifix: The company has developed a natural dyeing technology using microorganisms engineered with advanced synthetic biology methods to produce, deposit and fix pigments onto a variety of fabrics. This natural dyeing process uses 10 times less water than traditional dyeing methods, has same quality and similar cost structure. They have industrial trials planned in India later this year and we have our fingers crossed for it to be a huge success. Learn more about them: https://colorifix.com/
Stuffstr: Built on the vision of “No Unused Stuff”, Stuffstr aims to let consumers capture value of used stuff. By partnering with retailers to buyback products, it is also trying to change customers purchasing behavior. They envision that customers will think more about resale value of a product and in process go about purchasing more quality products that can have a second life. Learn more about them: http://www.stuffstr.com/
Save your Wardrobe: SYW is another cool start up trying to give your clothes a second life by digitizing your wardrobe and providing a whole eco-system of services around it to take care of them. They have the app launch coming up soon in London, so if you are around do sign up! Learn more about them: https://www.saveyourwardrobe.com/
– Team FTS