Today, almost a month after announcing the launch of its AI dedicated accelerator, Rockstart launches the pre-cursor for this program, called LaunchTrack AI. The founders and teams participating in Launchtrack AI will have a chance to fast-track to the accelerator.
Launchtrack AI focuses on first-time ‘talented’ founders with ‘deep technical knowledge.’ In contrast to its regular accelerator programs Rockstart doesn’t ask for equity share in return for the guidance and coaching its gives to potential entrepreneurs. It also doesn’t ask for any proof of traction or IP rights and single founders as well as teams can apply. Candidates are selected based on their AI programming skills, the potential impact and originality of their idea as well as their ‘entrepreneurial potential.’
By starting this pre-accellator progam Rockstart aims to empower first-time entrepreneurs. But also talented engineers and researchers in the AI field who would otherwise join large corporate companies, because of a lack of guidance in entrepreneurship. By filling this gap Rockstart aspires to support them in this very early stage by giving them the knowledge, skills and confidence to go out on their own.
The Launchtrack AI program does so by guiding AI experts through the validation process of building a business. In other words validating whether they have found problem-solution fit or as Rockstart says, ensure that ‘their products solve real-world problems.’ “Founders are challenged to prove that their assumed customer segment has a visible problem and would use their product as a solution, this is done through customer interviews, experiments and behaviour observation”, says Karin van Soest, Launchtrack AI Program Manager.
Rockstart Launchtrack AI is set to start in partnership with INCO as a part of their Start&Code initiative and a number of universities specialised in AI research. The INCO Start&Code initiative is sponsored by JP Morgan.
If you want to participate in this track you have the be fast deciding so. You have to apply before August 11 here. To show your commitment you have pay a commitment fee of €250 for a team and €150 for individual participants. The program runs from August 29 to September 28.
Kajsa Ollongren, deputy mayor of Amsterdam, says that for city like Amsterdam it’s important to learn how AI can be used to build smarter cities. “I’m happy to see that Rockstart is encouraging startups to focus on AI technology. AI will transform how we work and live.”
Photo by Kaci Baum on Unsplash