Business bootcamp in demand

A Dunedin business bootcamp helping turn ideas into businesses had to double its intake due to its increasing popularity.

Co.Starters is run by Start-up Dunedin, an initiative of the Grow Dunedin Partnership funded by the Dunedin City Council, University of Otago, and Otago Polytechnic.

People who enrol in Co.Starters do a nine-week programme in which they learn and plan to build a functional business from an idea.

In 2019, the organisation had to increase its number of programmes on offer from two to four.

This year is looking just as popular.

"We ran twice as many cohorts in 2019 and our first programme is already almost full for February 2020," Start-up Dunedin general manager Rachel Butler said.

The Co.Starters programme is delivered in 129 communities around the world and it began in Dunedin in 2015.

The participants come from all kinds of backgrounds and successes have included the coffee roasters Kaffelogic, software quality solutions company CodeLingo and film tourism company, FilmQuest.

"One of the best things about Co.Starters is that you don’t have to have everything figured out before you start," programme facilitator Angus Pauley said.

"In fact, most of our attendees are starting up in their spare time around their job or other commitments."

Ms Butler said Dunedin’s business leaders believed great ideas came locally.

"It’s a city that says ‘Great, what do you need next? Who have you talked to so far?’ Many Dunedin business leaders volunteer as guest speakers throughout the Co.Starters programme."

The first Co.Starters programme this year begins in February and will run one evening a week for nine weeks.


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