With platforms like Tik Tok, Snapchat and Sandbox VR exploding in popularity over the past decade, it’s the age of the creative economy as more and more enterprising and creative youths channel their creativity and passion towards a viable career.
Creative founders are fast rising, yet while there are many resources dedicated to founders in deep tech and STEM industries, there is a global lack of support and resources for tech entrepreneurs in the creative space. Furthermore, in a city where the local arts scene has not yet been able to fully flourish, and creativity sometimes lacks an environment and outlet, these founders struggle to make their creative ventures a reality.
Our partner, a local youth center, aims to provide a platform for creative youths to build up their talent and harness their creativity for good.
Noting that the local youth centre has strategic spaces, networks and resources set out for different creative verticals, we designed a 20 week programme targeted at early-stage creatives who were keen to start up. A first-of-its-kind programme in the city, designed to nurture and engage creatives and equip them with essential business skills, with the understanding that many creative entrepreneurs, while highly skilled in their respective domains, lack the business and finance skills to run a sustainable venture.
We also brought in experts and mentors in the creative space who could show them the ropes and pitfalls in their industries, and worked with our partner to identify potential commercial collaborations for our startups.
Over the course of 20 weeks, the programme worked with 29 creatives to launch their ideas and testbed these ideas in the youth centre. Going through our entrepreneurship curriculum built specially for creative founders, they worked with mentors and established creatives in the industry to refine their ideas and business models, and built their prototypes to ready for launch.
At the end of 20 weeks, the top five teams who were able to launch their creative enterprise and achieve the most user growth and traction during the programme were invited to a showcase where they demoed their products and pitched to investors, partners and collaborators in the creative industry.
Some of the products launched by the teams ranged from dance apps that could help dancers remember elaborate dance moves and sequences, to esports platforms that quickly garnered a database of over 10,000 users, an AI dating service that saw over 700 users signed up in one campaign, a music gamification service that signed on an indie label as a partner and won a blockchain hackathon in Miami, an automated adtech tool that signed on six pilots with major corporations and a music creation platform that was approached by global brands to help create bespoke music for their campaigns during the programme.
Building on the success of the programme and it’s alumni achievements, the programme continues to run today and is currently in its third edition.