Mexican entrepreneurs, designers, developers, marketers and product managers will have the opportunity to share ideas, take on expert advice and launch their own businesses at Startup Weekend Guadalajara 2013. Sponsored by the Naranya Labs and Neubox, the event takes place from Oct. 18 to 20 at the Guadalajara campus of the Tec de Monterrey University.
“It’s an event aimed at entrepreneurs who want a learning experience,” Startup Weekend organizer Diana Rodriguez said at the October edition of iTuesday, a monthly forum for Guadalajara’s high-tech business community.
“There will be many different dynamics to the weekend, in which entrepreneurs will go from pitching their ideas to launching their own startups in just 54 hours,” Rodriguez said, before introducing four of the coaches who will be on hand throughout the weekend.
These include Merv Bailey, founder and CEO of Sociomx, a digital services agency aimed at startups based in both Guadalajara and Seattle; and Salvador Almarez, chief technology officer of local app producer Tequila Soft. Almarez, a development engineer, will help participants develop technology for their apps, Rodriguez explained.
Also on hand will be Jorge Camacho from Flock and Fernando Jimenez of electronic-stylus producer NYON. “Jorge has a doctorate in innovation. He leads Flock’s innovation department in Mexico City and he’s coming specially to support all of the entrepreneurs in the Startup Weekend,” Rodriguez said, while “Jimenez focuses on marketing and advertising and will be helping all the teams to develop their projects throughout the weekend.”
Other coaches will include iOS developer Juan Benavides; Fullbox founder Dalila Salcedo; Jose Enrique Alba, director of the Tec Lean Accelerator; and Manuel de la Torre, cofounder and chief technology officer of ReTweeti. The winning startups will be chosen by judges Jonathan Nelson, founder of Hackers & Founders; Antony Brydon, co-founder and CEO of Directly; and Manolo Diaz, cofounder and CEO of Yogome.
Founded in Boulder, Colo., in 2007, Startup Weekend describes itself as “a global network of passionate leaders and entrepreneurs on a mission to inspire, educate and empower individuals, teams and communities.” Supported by the Kauffman Foundation, a non-profit organization from Kansas that supports entrepreneurship and education, its events are “weekend-long, hands-on experiences where entrepreneurs and aspiring entrepreneurs can find out if startup ideas are viable.”
After pitching their ideas and forming teams on the Friday, participants will spend Saturday and Sunday focusing on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing “lean startup” methodologies and building a minimal viable product. Finally, on Sunday evening the teams demonstrate their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from the panel of experts.
As of April 2013, Startup Weekend had presented 1,068 events across more than 400 cities in over 100 countries. Over 100,000 entrepreneurs have taken part, creating more than 8,190 startups. Around half of attendees have technical or design backgrounds, while the other half have business backgrounds, according to Startup Weekend. More than 36 percent of startups are still going strong after three months, and roughly 80 percent of participants plan to continue working with their teams after each event.
Tickets for Startup Weekend Guadalajara 2013 cost 700 pesos ($53 USD). To register, visit www.guadalajara.startupweekend.org.
Duncan Tucker is a British journalist based in Guadalajara, Mexico. He covers a wide mix of news, politics, business, the war on drugs, culture and sport. Aside from Global Delivery Report, he writes regularly for the Guadalajara Reporter, the Huffington Post and Soccer365.com. Much of his work can be found on Mexico-themed blog “The Tequila Files.” Follow Duncan on Twitter @DuncanTucker.