Investment Readiness Accelerator by Connectology

By: Connectology Team

In this article, we are going to introduce one of Connectology’s flagship programmes. In an edition tailored for the EIT UM, already 86 innovative companies from 27 countries graduated from the programme, featuring women in top management in more than half of the companies, while being successful in attracting private investment exceeding 20 million euros. And this number keeps growing month after month.

Methodology that Actually Works

Two times per year, out of hundreds of startups determined to change how we commute, Connectology picks a few and invites them to the Investment Readiness Programme. Together with one of the biggest innovation and mobility investors in Europe – the European Institute of Technology and Innovation Urban Mobility (EIT UM), Connectology is creating a portfolio of first-class innovators trained to revolutionise the mobility market. All the startups have something in common – a desire to change the existing solutions and integrate their philosophy into mobility niches. The statistics of graduated startups’ fundraising success are above the market average. More than 70 per cent of participant companies already received investment, while the market average is 60 to 65 per cent.

One of those startups that did pretty awesome after IRP is Autonomous Knight. The Belgian company decided to replace LIDAR as the preferred sensor in autonomous transportation and convinced the investors on IRP’s Demo Day that they could pull it off. It’s estimated that until now they attracted around 1 million euros, and one of their first investors was EIT Urban Mobility. Geoffrey Ejzenberg, the cofounder of Autonomous Knight, was complete and precise in describing their intentions: “We’re going to demonstrate it to all the big players in the world. Participating in the IRP opens the doors and that is invaluable. We wouldn’t come this far without them.”

Moreover, when you go through the IRP programme, he adds, it’s a certificate of quality. Another great indicator of IRP’s value is that Geoffrey is not a beginner; he is a serial entrepreneur and still says he learned a lot during the programme. “Even though I studied finance and venture capital and founded eight businesses, the IRP had great relevance and was very valuable to me. Connectology has very good experts and the programme addresses everything required for a founder to get a clear idea and roadmap on what actions need to be done. And what is even better, the EIT Urban Mobility has an investment fund to support startups and give them a head start.”

Insights of What Makes the Programme Unique

Now, let’s dive deep into what makes the programme so special. Don’t expect corny tricks; there are no marvellous recipes to get a fortune in ten days or other sorceries. In Connectology’s programme, there is just a group of more or less ordinary, but very experienced people willing to share their knowledge and time to make a difference and help some potentially prosperous startups to strive. If the founders listen carefully and implement the new findings in their business, IRP or EIT UM mentors may just become their investors. Since they have a potential interest in investing in startups, founders can be sure their mentors will give their best to help them transform into desirable investees.

One of the key elements of the Investment Readiness Programme is the Academy, which is designed to familiarise the participants with the essentials of equity capital, fundraising process, grants, public procurement, risks, potential law obstacles intellectual property issues, sustainability, collaboration with companies and other topics. Training includes pitching sessions, special workshops, webinars, and 1 on 1 consultations. Experts share their expertise, and startups are evaluated in every business aspect.

Business case deep dive is a rule, not an exception. When Demo Day comes, and startups pitch their hearts out in those crucial three minutes, the IRP team likes to feel like they have outdone themselves and presented completely revamped projects in comparison to when they started with the programme. That is the perfect occasion for startups to face their potential investors.

And that’s not the end of the voyage, that’s just boarding. Startups leave the programme full of inputs on what should be done to perform better and get the desired capital more easily. Even after the six months of the official programme are over, they stay in good company with hundreds of alumni, peers, mentors, and investors.

If you’d like to know more about Investment Readiness Accelerator by Connectology, get in touch with our Team today via [email protected].