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IKEA has announced it is inviting entrepreneurs all over the world to participate in IKEA Bootcamp, its new startup program developed in collaboration with Rainmaking, a global cooperative of entrepreneurs with experience building innovation programs and bringing startups and corporates together.
The program invites startups all over the world to find new innovative solutions to the challenges in people’s everyday lives. The program will accelerate the young companies by connecting Rainmaking’s understanding of startup mentorship with IKEA’s values and strategic vision.
Ten startups will be a part of the first three-month program that starts September 18, 2017 in Älmhult, Sweden. The program supports IKEA’s long-term vision to look for new and better ways forward and to have a positive impact on people and the planet. IKEA wants to engage with startups to solve three big problems:
- How can we make IKEA affordable for everyone?
- How can we make IKEA’s products accessible to everyone?
- How can we be fully sustainable and enable a positive impact on the planet?
“We believe that the IKEA scale and impact merged with our network and experience from building startups and innovation programs will provide a great environment for the startups. The program will help them speed up their development and create innovative products and services that truly have a positive effect on people’s lives,” says Alex Farcet, Partner at Rainmaking.
The ten selected startups will sit in a new co-working space at the heart of the IKEA Range & Supply Democratic Design center, working together with IKEA and Rainmaking. They will get access to the prototype shop, test labs and the expertise and knowledge within IKEA Range & Supply such as innovation engineers, innovation and creative leaders and value chain experts. Each startup will also get a senior global IKEA business leader as a lead mentor as well as access to tailored mentorship and advice from Rainmaking’s global network of serial entrepreneurs and experts. The selected startups will receive a grant of 20,000 EUR to develop their product and startup, as well as free housing in Sweden for the three-month duration of the program.
The duration of the program is September 18 to December 8, 2017. Throughout the process IKEA will be looking for possibilities to co-create with the startups. After the program, IKEA may end up being a customer, licensing the startups’ technologies or even investing in the companies, but will not take equity in the startups for participating.
How to Apply
To be admitted to the program, startups apply online through the IKEA Bootcamp website, then participate in interviews with IKEA and Rainmaking. Thirty startups will be invited to Sweden for IKEA Bootcamp selection days in August, where they will get the opportunity to meet and present their business idea to the IKEA Bootcamp advisory board consisting of representatives of both IKEA and Rainmaking. The advisory board will then select the ten startups that will be invited to the IKEA Bootcamp in September.
The deadline for applying to the program is midnight August 6 Central European Time (August 5 at 5pm CST). Startups will be considered on an ongoing basis.