Define your “Why?” and far beyond the product, the platform, the service

BigBooster International startups Acceleration program

Please introduce yourself to our readers!
I am Anne-Marie Graffin and I have the great pleasure to lead the BigBooster International startups Acceleration program. After many years on the Business side of the Pharmaceutical Industry I jumped into the startups world and ecosystem a few years ago while leading the Biovision Investor Conference that gathers each year startups and VCs from the European Bio & Health Industry. The lessons learned fromthis 4 yearsexperience and also the one of Non Executive Director of startups that we share within our Executive team have been the key drivers to build and shape the BigBooster program for the benefit of the Startups.

Please introduce BigBooster Acceleration program?
BigBooster is non profitinternational acceleration program for early-stage startups with groundbreaking innovations in Bio & Health, Informative Tech and Global Impact set up between Lyon(FR) and Boston(MA, USA). We team up with key innovative players to make sure startups get the best insight to boost their international business understanding and knowledge.Sourcing in France, Europe,Middle-East, Africa, we are a 9 months program beginning with a first selection of 100 top startups for our November Booster Camp in Lyon going trough Boston for our second booster camp in February with The 20 top class promotion and ending in April in Lyon to nominate the Top 3.

How BigBooster support Startups?
We support our selected startups throughthese 2 Booster Camps in Lyon and in Boston, with in between ad-hoc mentoring. During these intensive 3-days seminars, we crash-test their project, fine-tune their business approach, and train them to deliver the perfect winning pitch.
The Lyon Booster Camps provides a friendly environment for startups to learn from top-notch speakers and work in dedicated teams of 4 mentors and 4 startups to test and improve their value proposition, strategy, business model and pitch.The Boston one built together with our partner Mass Challenge is a gateway for startups looking to waste no time on getting to know the Boston and American innovative ecosystem & its promising market

Which Startups supports BigBooster?
Key players provide strong supportand highly contribute to the success of our program. They are international, renown for their excellence when it comes to tech, biotech, innovation … our partners includeamong others Lyon Métropole, Auvergne Rhône-Alpes Region, City of Boston,BpifranceMassChallenge, CapGemini, Sanofi, and Schneider. Our alumni such as Diabeloop, Neolys Diagnostics, Echy, Tilkee, MaaTPharma, NovaDiscovery,….are very hands-on in spreading the word out on our acceleration program. They are our best advocates.

What makes the BigBooster acceleration program for startups so interesting?
It’s short and intense. Andit’s tailor-made for the benefits of startups. The real added value of our program is the content and contributors: Partners, Mentors & Experts are heavily committed and mobilized during the Booster camps to improve the startups value proposition while working in their 4X4 dedicated teams. Startups and mentors come from various industries, and “live together” during the Booster camps, they share experiences, best practices and tips. They are not isolated and the competition is not overwhelming. They can really build a genuine bond. This is what happened in the first season and we truly believe it will happen again this year!

What makes you different from other accelerators?
• Our BigBooster’ Booster Camps set this acceleration program apart. These are intensive 3-days seminars taking place with highly committed partners, top-notch mentors and experts Not-for-profitie constraint-free for startups
• Our international outreach
• Our strong commitment to help startups fine-tune their story and understand the American market
• Our friendly, dynamic and inspiring atmosphere when cross-fertilization among startups of our 3 different domains has proven to be powerful.

What does a typical day of yours?
No typical day as such, luckily…as diverse as the number of partners and startups that we meettogether with the team and who build the success of the BigBooster program
This being said it also has a lot to do with the coordination of our different workflows which responsibilities are shared among the team and is very dependent upon the sequences of the program whether we are in the startup sourcing phase, the Booster Camps programs development phase, or the implementation phase, until October for the selection, November for the Lyon Booster Camp and February for the Boston Booster camp not leaving aside the season final in April in Lyon

What are your plans for the future? Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?
Our ambition, within the next years, is to become the most important European competition for early-stage startups, with an international goal, building on the mobilization of a group of iconic and involved experts and industrial leaders. China will be our next step.

What 3 tips would you give founders on the way?
Define your “Why?” and far beyond the product, the platform, the service… set up what is the ultimate goal you want to achieve. The higher it is, the more inspirational it will be…
Carefully select and build your team: co-founders, co-workers co-…, they may and will not be the sole reason for success but they may well be the sole reason for failure…
Be ready for resilience, it’ s one thing to know that the way to success is not linear, it’s another one to live the ups and downs of day today life… this being said, just remember that the decision you make is the right one at the time you make it…

Thank you Anne-Marie Graffin for the Interview

Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.

Sabine Elsässer

Sabine Elsässer is founder and chief editor of the StartupValleyNews Magazine. She started her career at several international direct sale companys. Since 2007 she works main time as a journalist. While that time she learned more about the Startup Scene, what made her start her own Startup Magazine the StartupValleyNews.

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