Leaders from the winning teams at the upcoming Startup Weekends in Auckland (15-17 June, http://auckland.startupweekend.org/) and Wellington (27-29 July, http://wellington.startupweekend.org/) will get to spend four weeks exploring the opportunities for their startups in North America at the Kiwi Landing Pad in San Francisco.
Startup Weekend announced today that a special prize will be given to the most promising team at each event, including airfare, accommodation, and a desk for one person at the Kiwi Landing Pad's co-working facility in downtown San Francisco. They will also receive tailored sessions on how to successfully enter the U.S. market, get funding, find a partner, and take their business to the next level.
Startup Weekend is a 54-hour marathon of inspiration, perspiration, and collaboration where entrepreneurs, designers, and software developers get together to form new businesses. Events have been run in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch, as well as over 580 events in 93 countries worldwide.
Dave Moskovitz, Global Facilitator for Startup Weekend in New Zealand, said that the prize will be a game-changer for the winning teams. "Kiwi Landing Pad will provide the jet fuel to help our startups take off in the massive North American market. It will greatly shorten the time to go from idea to international market traction. We expect it to take the competition at Startup Weekends to a new level."
Kiwi Landing Pad was conceived specifically to create opportunities for New Zealand startups to get going quickly in North America. The winners will participate in the Catapult Programme which is run by Kiwi Landing Pad and funded by the Ministry of Science and Innovation (MSI). Kiwi Landing Pad's sponsors include MSI, K1W1 (Sir Stephen Tindall), Jasmine Investments (Sam Morgan), Valar Ventures (Peter Thiel), Powerband (Craig Eliot), MOVAC (Phil McCaw), and Evander Management (Simon Holdsworth).
John Holt, CEO of Kiwi Landing Pad said, "Our core business is helping early stage companies validate their offering in-market, and pivot quickly to avoid wasting precious time and resources in the lead-up to making the jump offshore. Startup Weekends in New Zealand have created promising opportunities, and we want to work with these entrepreneurs to help them achieve great success for themselves and for New Zealand."
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