One of the drumbeats of this office is the "we need structure to have scale" drumbeat.
From the beginning it was clear that priceless collaborations were happening every day in Dublin - between startups and multinationals, serial entrepreneurs and new ones, investors and founders - but the ad hoc nature of it all was also a concern. You had to know someone to meet someone else, or be in the right place at the right time, for the magic to happen.
Over the last two years it’s been exciting to see organizations and individuals put solid frameworks around many of these important collaborations, and as a result, Dublin's offerings to startups have found new depth and new value. As Johnny Walker observed in our 2016 end of year Review: "We’re moving from a very loose, incohesive ecosystem here in Dublin to one that has shape, form and structure".
One of the structure-focused experiments we undertook in 2015 was the Host a Startup program with WebSummit. Instead of hoping visiting startups would bump into local startups on the conference floor, we matched them up beforehand and introduced them over email. More than 700 international startups applied for that program and it was very successful, if maybe a little oversubscribed!
We're launching Host a Startup again today in partnership with Dublin Tech Summit and aim to pair up 80 startups in total using vertical markets as matchmaker. Dublin startups can participate whether they're attending DTS or not. Go to the website here to learn more, and if you’d like to be involved email Sarah: Sarah@StartupDublin.com
We’ll bring the matched companies together for the first time on Feb 14th, the day before DTS starts, and we’ll make sure to finish up early for people with Valentine’s plans.