THE FIRST MAKERS – ACCELERATOR IN EUROPE

Accelerating makers and designers’ ideas 
through a hands-on approach to boot-strapping.
Five months free program in Nod community and makerspace.

Program partners:

WHAT IS AN ACCELERATOR?

Startup accelerators, also known as seed accelerators, are fixed-term, cohort-based programs that include seed investment, connections, mentorship, educational components, and culminate in a public pitch event or demo day to accelerate growth.

WHAT IS
LEVEL-UP?

LEVEL-UP is the first acceleration program dedicated to Romanian makers-entrepreneurs. 
Participants will delve into the methods and the tools to effectively develop an innovative design-product, validate their business model, create a sustainable growth strategy and build a successful company. 

Duration: 5 weeks;

Goal: innovators work on the validation approach to develop a design product that people would want to buy. The validation approach is based on the lean start-up principle: it helps the innovator maximize learning, in a short amount of time, using a minimum amount of resources. Innovators are challenged to sharply look at their business model, segment, team and financial model.

Results: Ready for Validation.

Duration: 9 weeks;

Goal: Innovators work on their first prototype, and improve it through continued feedback and validation. They get hands-on guidance while accessing key partners and prospects, which represent an important gateway to get a proof of market. They improve their launching strategies, and are encouraged to share key learning, failures and best practices with peers.


Results:
Prototype + proof of Market.

Duration: 5 weeks;

Goal: Innovators finalize their business and financial plan, attend a pitch training to practice their pitch and they will work with mentors to improve both pitch content and performance. Furthermore, they get ready for an international crowd-funding campaign: create the website, make a professional video, and work with PR professional to prepare their product launch.


Results:
Product launch.

INTEGRATED APPROACH 

We deliver a professional acceleration program that successfully engages innovators, mentors, field-experts, customers and partners, while providing the tools, know-how and physical resources needed to launch a successful, ready-to-scale product.

1. Offline Master Classes

10 master classes, spread across the 3 phases, which provide innovators with a solid business foundation to move forward rapidly.

2. Online acceleration platform

Online collaborative ecosystem for business modeling and mentoring

3. Business coaching

A selection of experienced mentors provide weekly coaching, structured around your business needs  and tailored to effectively fill the identified gaps. 

4. Space, tools & equipments

Full membership at Nod makerspace and access to special tools and equipment, needed to  build, test and improve your product prototype. 

5. Tailored technical support

Know-how and assistance in:

  • Refining the product concept;
  • Choosing the right materials;
  • Estimating feasibility and costs;
  • Using equipments to build functional prototypes.

6. Pre-sale trough crowdfunding

The crowdfunding campaign will be launched in Indiegogo. Support will be provided with website, photography, video and PR.

NOT SURE? SEE THE VIDEO!

BUILDING NEW IDEAS.
MAKING SUSTAINABLE DESIGN.

winning teams

intense weeks

Tools & equipments

mentoring hours

MENTORS & TRAINERS

Adrian Enache

Adrian Enache

Product Designer

Alex Moise

Alex Moise

Creative Industries Director Banca Transilvania

Andreea Nițoi

Andreea Nițoi

Brand Thinking Consultant & Facilitator

Carla Szabo

Carla Szabo

Product Designer

Cristian Burcea

Cristian Burcea

Regional Manager Micro-financing Banca Transilvania

Florin Cobuz

Florin Cobuz

Program manager Nod makerspace

Emanuele Musa

Emanuele Musa

CEO Babele

Dragos Nicolaescu

Dragos Nicolaescu

Business Angel

Jasseem Allybokus

Jasseem Allybokus

CTO Visiperf

Monica Jitariuc

Monica Jitariuc

Managing Partner MSL Group The Practice

Matei Dumitrescu

Matei Dumitrescu

Business Angel

Mihai Jumuga

Mihai Jumuga

Power Tools Expert Trainer Bosch

Mihai Toma

Mihai Toma

Electronics & 3D Printing Consultant

Ruxandra Creosteanu

Ruxandra Creosteanu

CEO Nod Makerspace

Sabina Baciu

Sabina Baciu

Communication Expert

Sorin Chirica

Sorin Chirica

Production Manager Nod makerspace

Stefan Ghenciulescu

Stefan Ghenciulescu

Architect & Lecturer UAUIM

Vlad Andriescu

Vlad Andriescu

Cheif Editor Start-up.ro

Victor Draghicescu

Victor Draghicescu

Lawyer & Partner Right House

Andrei Tache

Andrei Tache

Designer DTM Designers, Thinkers, Makers

Mihnea Ghildus

Mihnea Ghildus

Designer & Owner Dizainăr

Bogdan Florin Ceobanu

Bogdan Florin Ceobanu

Entrepreneurship & Innovation at European Commission

Adnana Popa

Adnana Popa

Managing Partner Sago Finance

CROWDFUNDING ON

CROWDFUNDING ON

All the projects will be launched in Indiegogo, the crowdfunding platform that counts +6 million subscribers from over 100 countries.

The last phase of Level-Up will focus on the campaign preparation;

Support will be provided with website, photography, video and PR;

The goal is “product-pre-sale”:  to consolidate the customer base;

Participants will have 1 month to reach the target of 5,000Euro;  

TIMELINE

'
10.12.2018 - 31.01.2019

Project registration

APPLY NOW

T
01.02.2019 - 06.02.2019

Participants selection

N
07.02.2019

Jury Announcement

\
08.02.2019 - 15.02.2019

Lean Startup & Problem Validation

\
15.02.2019 - 20.02.2019

Market, risks & opportunities

\
20.02.2019 - 25.02.2019

Value Proposition Development

\
25.02.2019 - 30.02.2019

Brand theory

\
25.02.2019 - 03.03.2019

Business Modeling

\
04.03.2019 - 10.03.2019

Production Planning

\
11.03.2019 - 17.03.2019

Marketing & Sales Strategy

\
18.03.2019 - 24.03.2019

Financial planning

\
25.03.2019 - 31.03.2019

Strategy for Growth

\
01.04.2019 - 07.04.2019

Pitching & Storytelling

\
08.04.2019 - 15.04.2019

PR + Crowdfunding

\
16.05.2019 - 20.06.2019

Prototypes final tweaks

\
15.06.2019 - 29.06.2019

Crowdfunding final tweaks

\
30.06.2019

Demo-day & Products Launch

FROM OUR MENTORS

“Chase the vision, not the money; the money will end up following you.”

Alex Moise

Creative Industries Director, Banca Transilvania

“What do you need to start a business? Three simple things: know your product better than anyone, know your customer, and have a burning desire to succeed.”

Andrei Huettner

Corporate Communication, Robert Bosch

“Starting your own business is like riding a roller coaster. There are highs and lows and every turn you take is another twist. The lows are really low, but the highs can be really high. You have to be strong, keep your stomach tight, and ride along with the roller coaster that you started.”

Carla Szabo

Product Designer & Lecturer @ UNARTE

LET’S STARTS SOMETHING NEW!

If you’re ready to get your idea to the market, hit this button and tell us about it!

A FEW QUESTIONS…

…that our community is usually asking. And answers. 

Who can apply for this program?

LEVEL UP targets European Makers and Artisans with a clear product idea. Criteria for selecting applicants are:

  • Development readiness: The applicant must have validated the product concept and come with a
  • Commitment: applicants must have made reasonable steps to refine their initial idea and advance toward the creation of a first prototype;
  • Feasibility & cost: The product must be realizable within the program’s budget and scope. There must be a fit with the competences it requires and those that the Nod community can provide.
  • Innovation and Coolness: The product must be truly innovative and original (e.g. breakthrough design, original use, innovative material, etc.)
How much does it costs?

Not only the program is Free of charge for Participants, but we also provide you with the funding to develop your High Definition prototype. Compared to similar program, we don’t get shares of your company, nor we ask you a part of your revenues.

How much time do I have to invest in this?

The program requires in average 2 hours for the master class + 1 hour of mentoring + (at least) 1 hour to work on your prototype, per week. So that’s a commitment of at least 4 hours every week during 3 months.

Do I have to do the crowdfunding campaign?

The Crowdfunding campaign aims to help each product find its first customer segment. It is a pre-sale opportunity that allows each of you to get some real feedback on the super cool product that you have developed during the program. So we highly recommend each  entrepreneur to do this invaluable experience. The last phase of Level-Up will focus on the crowdfunding campaign preparation, so we will help you creating a website, do awesome photography, make a video, implement a powerful PR and media strategy. It will be an exhilarating experience!

What about copyright?

The Product, strategy and legal entity that you will develop during the LEVEL UP program is owned by you and your team. We neither get royalties from your sales nor require equity from your venture.

HAVE ANOTHER ONES?

If you don’t think your idea can fit in this program,
ask us before throwing it into your brain garbage.

ARE YOU READY NOW?

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Level-Up si a program designed by:

Business Partner

Tools Partner

Romania