About Us

Leicester Startups is a community for existing & aspiring entrepreneurs as well as supporting businesses and organisations.

 

Introduction

Ever had a great tech business idea or wanted to apply your existing skills to something innovative?

We want to bring together people who want to roll up their sleeves and start joint ventures, innovative start-ups and spin-offs with the support of a grassroots community of like-minded individuals. We aim to hold engaging networking events, seminars, mentoring sessions and hackathons to inspire the community.

If you have innovative business ideas you’d like to bring to life or the skills to assist others with theirs then this is the place for you.

We’d especially like to hear from anyone who has the vision, enthusiasm or experience to run events that will help our community.

Although we’re aimed at supporting scalable technology or intellectual property-based startups, conventional business supply companies are very welcome to attend provide they don’t treat it as a sales opportunity. Ideally we’re trying to encourage “give before you get” assistance and mentoring within the community and ultimately joint ventures between diverse people.

 

Background

Leicester Startups was conceived on the hunch that Leicester is rich in the raw materials required for startup activity but lacks the support of a community to inspire and motivate them.

In government and academic circles much hot air is generated about “the knowledge economy”, “intellectual property”, “business clusters”, etc but the outcomes are often patchy, short-termist or just impenetrable to entrepreneurs.

Leicester Startups is inspired by Brad Feld’s ‘Boulder Thesis’ as described in his seminal book Startup Communities which is summarised as follows:-

  • Entrepreneurs lead a startup community while everyone else feeds the community
  • Feeders include the government, universities, investors, mentors, service providers and large companies
  • Continual activities and events are essential to engage all participants
  • Top-down government-driven clusters are an oxymoron
  • Building an entrepreneurial culture is critical

Here is Brad Feld explaning startup communities:-

For more background on the thinking behind Leicester Startups view my original blog post and also my presentation slides (PDF) from our first Open Coffee meeting.

- Ben Ravilious, January 2013