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, Impact Entrepreneur, Inspiration

A Little Push to Keep Impact Entrepreneurs Going

How Kickstart Accelerator helped startups in Asia refine their pitches, business models, and more.

Over the years, the number of startups in the Philippines have grown. Innovators of the country are materializing their dreams of a better, impactful world. Unfortunately, not all of these startups can make it to the limelight – let alone have the opportunity for their pitches to be heard. Once a startup has assumed its business model or a product prototype, the next step is to find a scaling opportunity. Of course, the Philippines is no longer lacking in number of opportunities. In fact, a variety of investors can be found in almost every nook and cranny of the country.

The real issue lies in who will vouch for a startup’s potential.

Last week, Impact Hub Manila partnered with the Embassy of Switzerland in the Philippines, Digital Switzerland, Kickstart Accelerator, and Impact Hub Zurich to be the ears of startups whose voices have almost been exhausted.

On March 30, twelve startups were selected to join the Asian Roadshow Event in Manila for Kickstart Accelerator, where they received mentorship in finance from consumer specialist Allan Locke, Founder of Dunkin’ Donuts in the Philippines, mentorship in marketing from digital strategy and content marketing expert Riccardo Corsini, and mentorship in business model planning from John Lagdameo, Director of the prestigious Ateneo de Manila University, School of Management Business Accelerator Program. The startups didn’t hold back on their excitement, hustling and bustling, heading towards the rooms of the mentors to receive mentorship and feedback! Some were trying to find an empty room so they can adjust their pitches for the afternoon, after hearing their mentors’ advice.

Following the inspirational speech of our co-founder, LizAn Kuster, Raoul Imbach, Deputy Head of Mission of the Embassy of Switzerland in the Philippines, took the microphone to shake the confidence of the startups back into place, instill motivation, and ensure sportsmanship before the pitching began.

After hearing all of the startups’ pitches, three out of the twelve startups won the judges’ approvals. Jeff Hofer of HDC Agri, Sergio Arroyo of Ascendant Technologies Inc and Fat Cat Robotics from India who joined us through video chat, ended up receiving an advantage code, increasing their chances to be shortlisted for the succeeding rounds of the competition.

Impact Hub Manila hosted this event to help the startups sharpen their pitch, as well as encourage them to make room for improvement through the mentorship, and be motivated to do their best in the midst of competition.

We congratulate HDC Agri, Ascendant Technologies Inc., and Fat Cat Robotics for landing on top for the Asian Roadshow Event for Kickstart Accelerator. As for the other startups who attended the event, a big thank you!

In the words of our co-founder, Ces Rondario: “If the goal is to pave way for a better world – never be afraid of competition. Embrace that you are all working towards the same goal, and be thankful for it.”

Applications for Kickstart are open until April 30, 2017! Apply here and use the referral code KSA17-IH-Manila for that extra Manila edge!


Impact Hub Manila offers coworking spaces, incubation programs, corporate innovation workshops, and a vibrant learning community. Locally rooted and globally connected, Impact Hub continues to dominate the coworking industry as the largest global network of entrepreneurs with 15,000+ members in 101 Impact Hubs around the world. In partnership with KMC Solutions, Impact Hub Manila offers 6 key locations in Metro Manila for coworking or office space. This allows flexibility and convenience to entrepreneurs and startups who are passionate in collaborating to create an impact. Members can choose their preferred homebase (location) and move around other Impact Hub coworking spaces with no additional costs.

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