JFDI.Asia today announced that applications are open for the first of two business acceleration programs it plans to run during 2013. JFDI.Asia operates the longest-running seed accelerator program in South East Asia, taking teams of digital start-up entrepreneurs from idea to investment in 100 days, with greater than 60% success raising an average S$650,000 per team. JFDI.Asia was first in SE Asia to be accepted into the Global Accelerator Network founded by acceleration pioneer TechStars in Boulder, CO, USA.
While some teams applying will already have businesses up and running with customers, others may simply have an idea and passion for solving problems in an area of life where they have direct experience. Teams accepted onto the program will receive S$25k cash investment, over S$100k in technical facilities, office accommodation, intensive mentoring and an introduction to more than 100 active early-stage investors.
The program starts 14 February 2013 and runs through May. It will be the second time that JFDI.Asia works with a large batch of startups this way. Hugh Mason, co-founder and CEO at JFDI.Asia said: “Independent valuations prove that we increase the value of start-ups by a factor of 4–5 in 100 days. Just as important, we probably cut a year or more off the time it would take an independent business to achieve traction. That’s why we call it an accelerator. Informally, we also call it a ‘bootcamp’ because it is a life-changing intense experience, like basic military training for entrepreneurs.”
The accelerator program will operate from JFDI.Asia’s new premises at 71 Ayer Rajah Crescent, in the heart of Singapore’s thriving digital technology hub. Interest in advance of today’s official opening for applications has already resulted in over fifty teams registering from Singapore, India, Thailand, USA, Korea, UK and New Zealand. All are looking for support to help engineer innovative businesses around their ideas.
JFDI.Asia’s approach is based on new insights pioneered by academics including Professor Steve Blank, at Stanford University, and Professor Saras Sarasvathy, at Carnegie Mellon University. Their work sheds light on how ideas can be transformed into valuable businesses systematically, de-risking the process of innovation.
“Traditionally, entrepreneurship has been seen as a game of chance played by individuals born with a special gift. Today, that view is changing,” said Meng Wong, co-founder and Social Engineer at JFDI.Asia. “Around the world, accelerator programs like JFDI.Asia are creating thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in equity value, proving that it is now possible to teach people to think and act entrepreneurially. We believe that innovation need not be a mystery, and that entrepreneurship should not be painful or lonely. Both can be learned, working with peers and guided by mentors.”
Note: This post uses content from a JFDI Asia press release.