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In this episode Nataraj spoke to Marius Ciocirlan who co-founded ShareGrid, a marketplace for filmmakers and photographers to rent and sell their equipment. It was acquired by Backstage and is now Managing Director of Techstars Seattle. Techstars expanded to Seattle in 2010, and since then more than 130 companies have gone through the program & collectively gone on to raise more than $2.5 billion in capital.
[00:00:00] Nataraj : So Techstars is an, you know,
traditionally what we call as an accelerator, right? Yeah. Uh, so what are the
founders really getting outta, um, joining tech?
[00:00:09] Marius : Yeah, for sure. So, um, the Tech
Techstars program essentially, uh, falls into almost three phases. So it’s a 13
week program and it’s kind of, uh, set up in three phases. The first phase is
customer discovery, so we worked with you to ensure that like, , you truly
understand who your customer is and what are they buying from you.
[00:00:31] Marius : Like, you know, you, you would be
surprised how many people have an idea of who their customer is, but it’s not
clearly defined. They don’t really understand why that customer is interested
in their product. So even companies that are farther along, we find. , it’s
always good to like really reflect on who your customer is.
[00:00:50] Marius : So the first phase is customer
discovery. Second phase is go to market and execution, which is more important
nowadays, especially given the market [00:01:00]
situation. More important than ever to actually gain real traction in your
business and prove out that your business has some product market fit. And
product market fit can mean different things at different stages.
[00:01:12] Marius : But at least in your initial M V P,
there needs to be some product market fit. And then the third phase is we’re
preparing you to go out in front of investors. So we’re working on your pitch
deck, we’re working on your delivery, we’re working on all of your documents,
uh, getting you ready to ensure that you’re ready for, uh, investors and
putting you in front of investors.
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