The Westerwelle Young Founders Programme is a fully funded year-long programme for 25 exceptional entrepreneurs from developing and emerging economies. As part of the programme, the Westerwelle Foundation hosts an annual conference in Berlin: the Young Founders Conference. Its focus is to connect young founders from developing and emerging economies with each other and with the German startup scene.
The participants of the Young Founders Conference will have the unique opportunity to meet and interact with successful entrepreneurs, investors and political decision makers. They will also join a network of like-minded outstanding young founders from developing and emerging economies.
- The Westerwelle Young Founders Conference – a week-long conference in Berlin to get to know fellow Young Founders, the German startup scene, and strengthen their entrepreneurial skills by attending workshops and meetings (travel and accommodation will be covered by the Westerwelle Foundation);
- A personal mentor who is an experienced entrepreneur and will function as a sparring partner with whom you can discuss upcoming challenges and new opportunities;
- Monthly peer mentoring calls with the other successful Young Founders of the cohort to share knowledge with and support each other;
- Expert sessions on relevant topics (e.g. OKRs, investor KPIs, marketing & sales);
- The Young Founders Network — a strong alumni network that functions as a platform for all Young Founders to connect with each other, exchange ideas and find support for existing challenges;
- Exposure to the Berlin startup scene and the public for you and your startup via our social media channels and our networks,
- Assistance beyond the programme as we remain a contact person for the Young Founders and will help you to find suitable experts for challenges, offer possibilities to share learnings with current cohorts or celebrate successes.
- You have recently (in the last 5 years) started a for-profit company with a scalable business model that has achieved Product-Market Fit and has ideally secured first external funding (if you run a business model that requires external investment);
- your company is based in a developing or emerging country or has a strong business focus on developing and emerging economies;
- you possess a good working knowledge of English;
- you are available to attend the Young Founders Conference in Berlin and can make time to participate in monthly mentoring and peer mentoring calls for the 6-month programme.
Please note that foreign applicants must possess valid travel documents (including a visa, if necessary) to enter Germany, and valid travel medical insurance.
Application Process WYFP Spring 2019
- Online application (Deadline: 8 January 2019, 1PM CET)
- Notification of application status to all candidates (23 January 2019)
- Skype interviews with shortlisted candidates (24 January – 12 February 2019)
- Jury decision and final selection of candidates (18 February 2019)
- Notification of application results to shortlisted candidates (19 February 2019)
One of the highlights of participating in the Westerwelle Young Founders Programme is that every participant will also join the Young Founders Network — a strong network of outstanding entrepreneurs from emerging and developing countries who had participated in the programme themselves. The Young Founders Network is a place to look for expertise, develop synergies with other Young Founders and support each other.
For more information and to apply, visit the official page here