Student Support Center
Student Support Center provides you guidance and support as you build your dream startup. We mentor you through the following stages of converting an Idea into a Startup:
For support with developing your business ideas please come to?
DIGISTART Support Center, UNIDEMI,
Room 3.9, 3th Floor, Building VIII
Department of Industrial and Mechanical Engineering
Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia,
Universidade Nova de Lisboa,
Monte de Caparica, Portugal
Tel: +351 962282558
The Student Support Center provides you with our assesment of your startup ideas. We will work with you to play with the idea till it matures into a clear and actionable business strategy.
The digital space allowed companies to innovate and differentiate their business offerings in a way that was never previously possible. Some of its natural characteristics such as globalised online markets and low incremental per user costs enable rapid expansion of a successful digital business. Digital businesses are based on effective use of information highways for bidirectional communication between the business and the clients. It makes use of a variety of rich graphical displays which are no longer limited to Desktops and Portable Laptops. Recent advances in mobile technology have expanded the potentials of how technology can be harnessed to provide users with rich content over interactive interfaces on the move.
Thus digital business can provide infinite opportunities for innovation to create new products and services that fulfil different customer needs and often creates new user needs. digital business has brought in radical changes to existing traditional business sectors such as online travel booking sites to the hotel and airline industry, digital libraries to the publishing industry, music on demand apps like spotify to the traditional music record industry. The interconnection of users has also given rise to new user needs such as the rise of Social Networks like Facebook, video sharing sites like Youtube, Product Review Sites, amongst others. The web and mobile app interface allows entrepreneurs to start digital businesses and provide innovative services at a fraction of the costs required to set up traditional businesses.
The initial idea is just a starting point, not a blueprint, but a question. To generate such questions you need two things: to be familiar with promising new technologies, and to have the right kind of co-founders and colleagues. Universities have the right environment for innovation, and that's why so many startups grow out of them. They're filled with new technologies, research activities and creative young people. We help you turn your passion for innovation into sustainable startups poised for growth.
The Student Support Center looks forward to seeing students coming through the office door with creative ideas that they want to turn into startup companies. The center facilitates the spread of new startup ideas and encourages dialogue about the ideas.
A good startup idea must be backed by a compatible business model before it gets the interest of investors. A business model not only contains the strategies for monetising the product but also how pricing strategies can stimulate market expansion and growth. Our experts will guide you to developing a smart business model compatible with your startup idea.
When people really love something, they tell their friends about it. You get organic, word of mouth, growth when you have a small number of users love your product. Great companies always have a great product that spreads through word of mouth. Very few startups die because of competition. They die because they fail to make their users love their product, and spend their time on other things.
You must be super passionate about the idea and you must know the problem very well. You can build a great product around it that solves the problem for your small set of users and can monopolize the market, even if its a small market. You need that passion to get through the hard part. You know you have the right idea and the right passion when you leave work and spend all of your free time working on the project, its consuming all of your thoughts, and feel like you have to beat it out of your chest and give it to the world.
You want a market that is too small now for any big players to take a look at, but will be big in 10 years. This requires a lot of thinking to make sure the market will be there and will grow. Thus, you have to think about Business Model strategy for your startup. Your Business Model must include a well thought out strategy that balances revenue generation and growth. We will help you explore options such as Freemium, Dynamic Pricing Strategy and Viral Marketing that can be incorporated in your Business Model strategy.
The Student Support Center invites you to contact us to discuss about the details of your Startup plan and help the you to get your Business Model stategy ideas validated by experts.
One of the goals Student Support Center is to create an active networked community which will help in gathering the core team for new startups. We guide you through the process of building a team that you are comfortable to work with and holds cross functional competencies.
You can make your profile and join our Talent Forum where you will be able to interact with other enthusiastic potential co-founders. You can create your own idea startups and invite others to join you. You can also look into other Founder Idea Spaces and contact those whom you might wish to join.
The majority of successful startups have more than one founder. Cofounder relationships can be the most important in the company. Since this dynamic is so vital to the health and culture of the company, if the cofounders' relationships fall apart so does the health of the rest of the company. Moreover, to be a successful online startup, at least one cofounder should be technical. In addition, try to stay small as long as you possibly can. In the end, the efficiency of team members determines the value of a team. You need people that believe in it almost as much as you do!
One of the goals Student Support Center is to create an active networked community which will help in gathering the core team for new startups as well as helping the web entrepreneurs to get their ideas validated by experts and then providing coaching and mentoring support.
You can make your profile and join the Talent Forum where you will be able to interact with other enthusiastic potential co-founders. You can create your own idea startups and invite others to join you. You can also look into other Founder Idea Spaces and contact those whom you might wish to join.
Acceleration and Incubation
The Student Support Center will help the startups to connect to accelerators. Our partner, Lisbon Challenge, is an ambitious 3-month acceleration program aimed at eager international tech startups in prototype or product phase, looking for a truly innovative and empowering experience. It aims to offer consistent methods and resources for startups acceleration.
Additionally, the Student Support Center will help the startups to connect to incubators such as Startup Lisboa. Startup Lisboa supports the development and growth of the incubated startups, helping them to attract customers, investments, to escalate and becoming global. Its incubation model includes the assignment (in both buildings) of workspaces with a cost below market value.
The startup accelerators provide funding opportunities, mentoring, networking, training, and events for a predefined period, usually three-four month period. The cash investment into each startup from the accelerator is very minimal, however, the accelerator program intents to improve the chances of raising venture capital from a third party entity on the back end. Mentorship could be coming from on-site experts that are affiliated with the accelerator. In return for the provided services, accelerators usually ask for compensation from companies invited to join, typically a small amount of equity (6 to 9 percent) and/or seed capital (around $15,000 to 20,000), however others like the Lisbon Challenge are based solely on sponsorship and do not charge the startups..
The DIGISTART Support Center will help the startups to connect to one of its partner, Lisbon Challenge accelerator. Lisbon Challenge is an ambitious 3-month acceleration program aimed at eager international tech startups in prototype or product phase, looking for a truly innovative and empowering experience. It aims to offer consistent methods and resources for startups acceleration. Lisbon Challenge in a nutshell:
- No equity taken
- 3 months of acceleration in an international environment
- 1000+ workshops & mentoring for product-market fit
- Network of 200+ international mentors and access to top events
- 150k€ in perks (Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Paypal, and many more)
- Free office space in Lisbon's city center
- Roadshow to London, New York, San Francisco, Tel Aviv
- Travel + accommodation grant of up to 1000€/international startup
Similarly, a startup incubators are collaborative programs designed to help new startups succeed. Incubators help entrepreneurs solve some of the problems commonly associated with running a startup by providing workspace, seed funding, mentoring, and training.
The Student Support Center will help the startups to connect to Startup Lisboa. Startup Lisboa supports the development and growth of the incubated startups, helping them to attract customers, investments, to escalate and becoming global. Its incubation model includes the assignment (in both buildings) of workspaces with a cost below market value. Also, Startup Lisboa establishes a link to mentors to help entrepreneurs develop their business; provides access to partners that offers or make available at a lower price, specialized services; connect entrepreneurs to business angels, venture capital investors and other tops of finance; promotes sharing of knowledge between the incubated and network events; organizing exclusive activities like workshops and clarification sessions to the entrepreneurs incubated.
Student Support Center can provide support to assist entrepreneurs in seeking new sources of funding for their Business Ideas, including public and private funding opportunities. For example Faber Ventures and Portugal Ventures are two investors in Portugal.
Faber Ventures invests in new Internet companies. Faber Ventures' team combines extensive backgrounds in entrepreneurship, early and late stage technology ventures, venture capital and strategy consulting with top talent in design, technology and business.
Portugal Ventures is a Venture Capital and Private Equity firm, focusing its investments in innovative, scientific and technology-based companies as well as in companies from the more traditional Portuguese Tourism and Industrial sectors, with significant competitive advantages and export oriented to global markets.