For the 4th year, The International Create Challenge is back. This (free) 3 weeks intensive and immersive technology accelerator program will take place from 25th of August to 15th of September in Martigny. Started by the Idiap Research Institute and the Association for Interactive Multimodal Information Management, now also supported by Polytech Ventures, the challenge is like an extended Startup Weekend (so you have to be fit and ready to last this marathon!): you work within a team of 3-4 people (people and projects have to apply until May 4th) on your project, get access to high technologies developed by the Idiap and are extensively coached to build a Mininum Viable Product and a credible and promising business case.The 3 winners will be get a CHF 10’000.- award each and get a potential investment, as well as additional subsidies and in-kind services worth up to CHF 100’000.- (provided by TheArk)!
The program is limited to 30 participants, which will form 10 teams. If you are an entrepreneur, a researcher, a developer or a designer, you should apply until May 4th 2015! You can apply even if you do not have a specific business idea… you will be able to find co-founders (which is a tricky challenge faced by future entrepreneurs!). And then you will have until mid-June to submit the “definitive” project.
I have asked the participants of the previous editions what they think about the program and the experience of International Create Challenge. Here are the feedbacks from 10 entrepreneurs who participated to ICC:
“For me, the ICC was an incredible experience, where I had the chance to focus on a personal project for 3 weeks and to learn many things about setting up a start-up with hands-on practice and talks from international experts. For our team it was even more important because of two main reasons: first, we all came from the academia and we had no idea on how setting up a business and, second, we were from 2 different institutes in two different countries and this was the sole chance we had to really work on a common project together. Moreover, this was when I met the guys organising the TEDxMartigny and since then I started working as a volunteer with them: this was my great opportunity to meet this passionate team of innovation lovers that paved the way for a still ongoing fruitful collaboration.”
AGE, Maurizio Caon
“The ICC is an outstanding opportunity for someone with an idea to start-up.
3 weeks of mentoring, support and time to convince yourself and others that what you want to do is worth doing. After these all inclusive 3 weeks, free of charge, you will leave with a strong confidence in your future and nothing will ever stop you on your road to succeed. That’s what happen to BIOWATCH. That’s where everything started. From an idea to a prototype, to traction, to company, to growth, to succeed.”
BIOWATCH, Mathias Vanoni
“ICC gave me the change to transform my idea to a solid project.
I have got the experience of becoming extrovert by learning how to express my idea to the public. I have got the chance to meet very interesting and amazing people. It was a chance that will be unforgettable.”
MS Maya, Zoe Zindrou
“We had the opportunity to take part and win the ICC2013 and it was a real turn point for Luma7.
It’s incredibly helpful as you spend 3 weeks on a distraction free environment with access to coaches and other people that can give incredible advice.
About one year after the ICC we created our SARL and got our first clients (Government of Valais) through contacts initiated with the ICC. A must-go experience for any passionate entrepreneur.”
Luma7, Nelio Barros
“We were broken at the end but, men, it totally worth it! Great advancements in your project is on the menu for sure!”
Opticale, Philémon Favrod
“It is a very well organized event that gives you the chance to focus on your project for 3 weeks and get feedback from experts. Francois and the Idiap team are very welcoming and make you feel at home. Highly recommended!”
“ICC is an excellent platform for aspiring entrepreneurs especially researchers trying to commercialize their latest research breakthroughs as technical products. I presented my start-up idea for the first time at ICC 2012. I got so much motivation, support and knowledge through ICC that I decided to pursue my career as an entrepreneur.”
Geneemo, Lakshmi Saheer
“International Create Challenge was a great chance to meet many international teams. During three weeks, we worked everyday on our startup to bring it to the next level. With the available mentorships we made it.”
Horus Technology, Benedetta Magri
“ICC was an incredible opportunity. Our project gained a lot of maturity. Working during 3 weeks 100% on the project with the team and not to have to worry about anything but work was awesome. We even met a company in Valais that will produce our device.”
Anemomind, Julien Pilet
“This was an enthusiastic event allowing to meet great international people.”
9-99, Rodolphe Dewarrat