👋 Find a cofounder, conferences, oil from cashew nut shells, fewer female founders
This week, The Podcast Host has a new dataset for podcast creators, Fintech Festival and Invest2Scale announced, KPMG's UK tech innovator winner for Scotland announced, and meetups around data, product, neurodiversity, and more.
But first - cofounder matching!
Here's your Campfire for 10th of July 2023.
💼 This issue of Campfire is caffeinated by Shepherd & Wedderburn, the legal firm that's there for you every step of the way. Find out how they've helped companies like AdinMo below.
🤝 We've made a new Scottish cofounder Tool
By Robert Gelb
I'm in the early stages of a new idea. Being in the discovery stage is exciting, but also frustrating. You're speaking with potential customers, deep diving down rabbit holes, and evaluating the efficiency of opportunity. But you also lack the resources, team, or a product to take advantage of those opportunities.
That's the way it needs to be -- those constraints force you to figure it out anyway. That doesn't mean it's not frustrating.
As such, I've been working with a few potential cofounders on mini projects to see how we work together. It's a great way to get to know people, brainstorm, pull a few threads, and explore hopes and dreams together. I've been meeting my cofounder dates mostly through existing connections or the very good YC cofounder matchmaking tool.
I know myself, and what kind of company I want to build, and at what scale. A cofounder to me is a partner -- someone who's intellectually ready and unafraid to debate, argue, and challenge, but who also brings an entirely different tool and knowledge set to me.
But all the matches I've made have been outside of Scotland.
As an early proponent for remote-first way back in 2016, it's funny for me to prioritise the wish to work with someone here, but for different companies, ideas, and founders, there are different requirements. And there's something so appealing in getting in a room and working with someone for hours on end. Exhausted but excited to see so much progress made.
Whether you believe the Scottish startup scene is vibrant, under-funded, over-funded, filled with drive, or mostly mediocre, one thing that's true is we need more better startups. To make more better, we need smart people, who have different skillsets, to interact and see what magic they can make together.
In the last month, I've heard from more than 10 others also interested in potentially co-founding a company that they'd love to see if anyone local might be available or interested.
So we made a tool, which you can find here. We're calling it Cofounder Curious.
Here's how it works:
1) Fill in your listing (modelled on the YC cofounder match-making questions with a few relevant tweaks)
2) Browse other listings and get emailed new listings
3) Connect with each other
Who's it for?
Importantly, it's not just for experienced founders. If you're reading this and you've never started a startup, but might want to (especially if you have deep knowledge of a particular problem or industry), this is a great way to meet with others who have complementary skills. Whether you're looking to start something on the side, build a unicorn, dig into a particular problem area, or just meet people in the earliest phase of startup life to see what might happen, there's no pressure, or expectation. You don't need to be ready to do anything full-time.
Right now, it's just a form. Once we get at least 10 submissions and review them, we'll launch it to anyone who's filled it out.
We'd love to know what you think: what needs changing? What have we missed? It's a tool for the community, so community: tell us what you need.
Have a spicy take? Want to write about an aspect of being a founder? Get in touch and suggest a topic!
🎙️ Edinburgh-based The Podcast Host just released the 'Independent Podcasters Manifesto' running the largest podcast creator census with 1200 podcasters. The manifesto gives 10 tips for success in podcasting based on this data. Access it here.
🏴 The Scottish Gov announced £4.75m in funding for business support for social entrepreneurs over 4 years including workshops, leadership development, and one-to-one coaching. They're calling it Just Enterprise. TS TH
💰 The Invest2Scale conference has been announced for October and is currently taking registrations of interest. The event which describes itself as bridging the gap for scale-up businesses to access investment funding. Planned tracks include scale up investment, hiring, with dedicated sessions on space and fintech. More info. TS
💷 The 3-week FinTech Festival has been announced for September with over 50 events around the country culminating in the FinTech summit. If you're building in fintech, be sure to check it out. More info. FS
🏢 Need new digs? New flexible office opening in Edinburgh to rival WeWork called Cubo on Princes street. SFN
🏄♀️ Female entrepreneurship is failing to increase in Scotland and has fallen behind the UK in general, according to a new survey conducted by the University of Strathclyde. IN
📣 Asks & Offers
👭 Interested in connecting with possible co-founders? Fill in your listing on Cofounder Curious today! Connect with others for possible cofounder matching here.
💡 Who do you know? Edinburgh-based clean-tech spinout Energy3 (ultra-high temperature energy storage technology) has closed a funding round and is hiring:
🇸🇩 Hire from Sudan: The war in Sudan is wreaking havoc on people's lives. There are several high-quality developers and designers available for hire. More info here.
🙋 Interested in being a COO/CEO? A successful startup (12-15 people) are looking for someone to lead it into its next phase. Seeking a founder mentality who is willing to experiment and explore new avenues while being in charge of the company's operations. A great opportunity for the right person who can have a genuine impact on the company in an exciting industry (Earth Science Tech). Reply to this email for more info.
🎨 Fancy a new adventure? An established Applicant Tracking System (ATS) SaaS platform is looking for a growth & marketing lead. Offering founder-level equity for the right candidate. Reply if interested.
✍️ Want to help write Campfire? We're looking for some part time paid help (~3-4 hours a week). If you know anyone, ask them to get in touch!
🦸 Collaborative, not transactional.
"ShepWedd’s understanding of the unique requirements of a tech startup have been immensely helpful to AdInMo on our growth journey. At each step ShepWedd have provided robust guidance in navigating complex legal and regulatory landscapes, especially around investment and employee compensation schemes.
Their lawyers, particularly Stephen Trombala and Gavin Charlton, have consistently offered astute advice and practical solutions tailored to our unique challenges.
The AdInMo executive team have been pleased overall with the level of professionalism, attention to detail, and personalised care that ShepWedd offers. Our interactions with ShepWedd have always had the feel of collaboration rather than transactional events, and we highly recommend to any ambitious startup aiming for legal expertise." - Kristan Rivers, CEO & Co-Founder, AdinMo
Shepherd & Wedderburn's innovative and personable approach helps companies from first incorporation onwards (including through to an exit – if that’s the goal). Their global reach means they can scale and grow with you, like they have with clients like Epic Games, FanDuel, Parsleybox, and TVSquared.
👉 To learn more, send an email firstname.lastname@example.org & set up a chat.
🧩 10/07, 12:00 🗺️ Online: Supporting the Neurodiverse Community: What can we do better? Round table discussion with neurodiverse founders as they share their struggles and insights, enlightening us on the challenges they face in the business world. MORE INFO
💻 10/07, 18:30 🗺️ Inverness: Inverness Tech Meetup: We have some interesting speakers, and talks lined up with lots of time for networking. MORE INFO
🤝 10/07, 18:45 🗺️ Kelso, Eyemouth, Virtual: SOSE Summer Engagement Tour 2023: Come and talk to SOSE to find out more about the region’s economic and community development agency. MORE INFO
🎨 11/07, 12:00 🗺️ Stirling: Marketing Meetup: A quick and insightful in-person meetup, open to all marketers, to share your experience and learn from others. MORE INFO
🧩 13/07, 12:30 🗺️ Edinburgh: Neurodiversity Meetup: a space for Neurodivergent (ND) people and allies working in the Scottish Tech Ecosystem to meet and discuss how we can make our spaces more inclusive to neurodivergent individuals. MORE INFO
👐 20/07, 10:00 🗺️ Edinburgh: Does your Board help you soar? - Elevate your Board for growth!: Workshop and peer coaching session hosted by Kirsty Bathgate to identify how best to get the most from your board. MORE INFO
🏳️🌈 20/07, 12:00 🗺️ Edinburgh: LGBTQ+ Meetup: How Can We Support Transgender People in Tech?: This month we will be talking about how we can support transgender people in tech. MORE INFO
🍻 20/07, 17:15 🗺️ Edinburgh: Barclays and CodeBase, Edinburgh's monthly quiz!!: Dave, from Barclays Eagle Labs, is hosting a pub quiz each month from the CodeBase, Edinburgh, event space. The winning team will receive a trophy that they can display proudly in their office/on their desk for the month, until someone else tries to win it at the next quiz! Beverages and snacks will all be provided - just bring your team and your brain power!! MORE INFO
🌍 20/07, 17:30 🗺️ Glasgow: People, Planet, Pint: Sustainability Meetup: Come and meet others interested in the Net Zero, Bcorp and Environmental space!. MORE INFO
🤝 20/07, 17:30 🗺️ Edinburgh: Startup Huddle: Edinburgh: Connect with fellow entrepreneurs in Edinburgh to network, learn and share expertise. MORE INFO
🤝 20/07, 18:00 🗺️ Edinburgh: Edi Tech Social: Come mingle, meet new people and enjoy a drink (or two!). MORE INFO
🤝 22/07, 14:00 🗺️ Edinburgh: Founders meetup: An opportunity to talk about your startup or your side hustle in a relaxed pub setting. MORE INFO
💻 25/07, 17:30 🗺️ Edinburgh: ProductTank Pub Night: Deep dives into product design, development, management & marketing. MORE INFO
🐊 25/07, 18:00 🗺️ Dundee: Dundee Data Meetup: a vibrant community-driven event that brings together data enthusiasts, professionals, and curious learners to explore the captivating world of data and its applications. MORE INFO
🤝 26/07, 19:00 🗺️ Edinburgh: Entrepreneurs Social Club (ESC): The social club for founders and aspiring entrepreneurs - skip the talks, presentations and lectures - and go straight to networking! MORE INFO
🧗♀️ 27/07, 10:00 🗺️ Online: Inspired confidence! (Scottish Women in Business): Panel discussion featuring chat about their journeys, and how they have inspired confidence in themselves and others. MORE INFO
🎯 Open 💡 Applications are open for the RBS Accelerator programme MORE INFO
🎯 22/08 🏗️ CivTech 9 Challenge call deadline for companies to submit proposals for a share of £7.8 million of contract opportunities for teams and businesses able to solve problems for government backed agencies and organisations in Scotland.
🎯 01/09 🤓 Applications are now open for the Scottish Cyber Awards. MORE INFO
🇬🇧 Upcoming Innovate UK deadlines:
Ofgem Round 3: Call for Ideas Submissions close 21 August
India – UK Collaborative R&D for industrial sustainability Applications close 6 August
UK-Israel Eureka Bilateral Collaborative R&D: Round 2 Applications close 13 September
Innovate UK Smart grants: June 2023 Applications close 27 September 2023
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That’s all for this week - have a great one!