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ΤHE PROGRAMME

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Programme Benefits
The main benefits of the IDEA Programme to the teams selected to participate are the following:

 

 

Building infrastructure with fully functional and well equipped co-working offices located at 36 Lykourgou Street, 1011 Nicosia, Cyprus, that will house the new entrepreneur teams for the entire period of their participation in the IDEA Programme. The location provides easy access by public transport as it is within walking distance from the urban bus terminal station of “Platia Solomou” and the “Ledra Palace” crossing. The Programme is housed in a newly refurbished listed building with high tech infrastructure, independent building entrance and suitable spaces for the provision of support services in various aspects of business creation and implementation specifically designed for startups and spinoffs.

The main characteristics of the infrastructure are:

– Office space for up to 10 entrepreneur teams with fully furnished open plan offices for 2-5 workstations/team members per team with access to high speed internet (wired and wireless), one telephone line per team and shared equipment for printing / photocopying / scanning/ faxing.

– Collaborative spaces that promote brainstorming and also cooperation between team members or even between teams. Also the teams will have access to a number of meeting rooms, conference rooms, and a training/presentations room.

– Fully equipped common spaces such as kitchens (sink, kettle, microwave, fridge and drinking water supply) and dining spaces.

– The building has the infrastructure to house disabled team members with appropriate ramps and toilet.

 

Training:

The Programme will provide structured training in the form of workshops (IDEA Accelerator training programme) to the team members during the accelerator stage (the first 13 weeks of the programme), with regular classes (2-3 times per week, afternoon hours, 3 hours per session). The training consists of short workshops (1-2, 3 hour sessions) on start-up creation and growth related topics which cover all aspects of the creation and development of a sustainable venture with a global outlook. Among others, the core subjects will be communication & pitching, business model and business plan formulation, digital marketing, sales and branding and lean metrics. Further training will be delivered through events and public presentations throughout the IDEA Programme duration as well as speciliased workshops on topics of interest and/or importance to the incubator teams.

 

 

Coaching: Each hosted team (stage A or B) will, upon entering the IDEA programme, be assigned a coach. Coaches are individuals with extensive experience and expertise in various sectors surrounding the creation and operation of a startup and are resident in Cyprus and hence within reach and can play a dual coaching – consulting role for the teams and assist in their work towards reaching the milestones. Ideally, the team will have one coach for the duration of its residence in the IDEA Programme.

 

 

Mentoring. The IDEA Programme will utilise its founding and strategic partners as well as mentors, coming from business, industry, finance, academia technical and consulting background and covering all aspects of business creation and development to each participating team. Mentors will play a guiding and facilitating role, meeting regularly with the teams to discuss the progress on the implementation of the business plans and providing consulting and recommendations for more specialised assistance (e.g. the need for specific training, specific services etc) within the network of the IDEA Programme partners.

 

 

Continuous guidance, feedback and monitoring by the IDEA Programme: The IDEA Programme team will hold regular meetings with the teams, both at accelerator and at incubator stage in order to review progress, identify issues that need attendance, provide feedback and monitor the milestones set during the programme to ensure their timely completion.

 

 

Cooperation with other Programme teams: The teams in the IDEA programme are encouraged to cooperate between them and offer any kind of assistance to each other from brainstorming and pitching sessions to testing of each other’s product/service, to feedback and to resource sharing.

 

 

Specialised consulting and other services: The IDEA Programme will provide pro bono consulting services to the participating teams as follows.

  • Accounting, tax and audit services: assistance in the establishment of the company, including accounting, tax, insurance and corporate law advice.
  • Human Resource management services: assistance in the recruitment, selection, development of human resources specifically suited to a start-up business.
  • Corporate identity, branding, marketing, advertisement and communication services: assistance in the creation, branding and promotion of the new venture corporate identity and the branding of their products and services.
  • International business and networking services: Consulting and support on solving all aspects of international business and assistance in finding potential customers, collaborators and partners abroad (Business to Business match making).
  • Legal and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) services: assistance and support in the process of the protection of the teams’ intangible assets such as patents, trademarks, copyrights etc within Cyprus, the European Union and internationally.
  • Information and Communication Technology (ICT) services: provision of ICT assistance, support and software / hardware consulting to the IDEA Programme teams.
  • Individualised development of skills: Identification of the skills the team needs to have enhanced through the recommendation of their mentor and provision of tailor-made support and training for the enhancement and further development of the skills identified.
  • Financial advisory services & networking with investors: To inform the teams of various financial instruments, grants or competitions that can be utilised to cover some of the initial business operation costs. Also, through the IDEA Programme, the teams will be brought in touch with a network of investors (business angels or Venture capital firms) for possibility of funding their start-up with the IDEA Programme preparing the teams for investor pitching.
  • Funding: For the successful stage A teams entering stage B, €10,000 seed funding will be provided for the development of the start-up from the Bank of Cyprus in exchange of 5% equity, the equity going to a not-for-profit entity and any profits will be utilized towards the sustainability of the programme.

 

 

 

IDEA Programme stages

Depending on the development stage of the teams, they can enter into one of the two Phases of the IDEA programme.

Stage A: Three-month accelerator training, suited to early development concept stage teams with no minimum viable product (MVP) or proof of concept or no prior experience in entrepreneurship.

Stage B: Six-month incubation phase is suited for teams with an MVP, ideally at the testing phase and in the process of registering their company.

Stage A teams will be eligible to move on to the Stage B. of the IDEA programme, subject to the successful review and approval of their three-month milestone, ie the creation of a minimum viable product (MVP) by an evaluators panel and based on a written progress report at month 3 followed by a pitching-interview session.

Stage B teams will be able to extend their stay up to a maximum of 6 months based on a monthly review.

The entry of stage B teams will be based on space availability. Priority will be given to stage A teams.