What is a Venture Studio?
The venture studio model has become increasingly popular among aspiring founders. They can provide a more holistic approach to helping entrepreneurs build and launch their businesses by providing entrepreneurs with a range of services, from idea validation to product design and development. They can also provide invaluable mentorship, guidance, and resources to help entrepreneurs take their ideas and turn them into successful businesses.
Forum launched our venture studio in 2022 to support founders even earlier in their journey while having fractional ownership in the latest technology transforming how we live, work, and interact. We’re dedicated to helping entrepreneurs transform their ideas into successful businesses. We act as fractional co-founders, providing entrepreneurs with the resources needed to launch and scale their businesses.
Building with a Studio vs. Accelerator vs. Building on your own
While a studio and an accelerator are both designed to help early-stage founders, there are still a number of differences between the two.
Our accelerator program is designed to help startups grow quickly, often over a short period of time, by providing access to resources such as mentorship, funding, and workspace. Forum’s accelerator is an 8-week program to help founders with product fit, GTM, and fundraising.
A venture studio, on the other hand, gets involved a step earlier to help entrepreneurs ideate, validate, launch, and scale multiple startups in a co-creative process. While accelerators focus on growing existing startups, venture studios focus on creating successful new ventures from the ground up.
- Capital, plus additional services such as product design, engineering, marketing, operations, and more.
- Lower-risk environment for founding a SaaS Startup — The risk profile for a startup is lowered by access to more professional resources, network, and expertise.
- Assistance executing a winning GTM strategy to get you to 50–100 ARR, and the right MVP to ensure early traction.
- Higher rates of success than traditional methods of funding — Since these concepts are validated by a team of individuals with experience founding and funding multiple companies, and who understand what it takes to scale a venture-backed startup, venture studio business models also tend to have higher rates of success than traditional methods of fundraising.
- Access to key resources such as software, office space, technology, and even legal services. This ensures that founders have all the tools they need to succeed.
The above resources enable founders to scale their businesses more quickly and efficiently than if they were working alone. Startups must fail fast and iterate quickly, and Forum’s studio team enables you to pivot quickly to create a successful venture-scalable product.
According to venture capital firm High Alpha, “startups established by studios have an average IRR of 53%, compared to 21% for non-studio startups.”
Process + Timeline
When you come to us with an idea, we use a rigorous assumption-testing process to systematically convert your idea into a revenue-generating business.
Ideate & Validate (4 weeks)
Our team works with founders to rapidly validate ideas and build pilots. We talk to customers, test potential solutions, and collect feedback. We seek enough validation until we get to a pilot.
Build & Sell (3 months)
After a successful pilot, we put in $250K and build. We build the MVP, expand the team, and develop a sales, marketing, and GTM strategy to hit a target ARR. With the full package, we enter Investor Week to raise your next round.
As you grow, we stay on as board members and observers. You have unlimited access to our communities and enjoy the strength of customer intros, GTM expertise, and funding network to drive growth.
“The 100k is nice… but the real value comes from having the MDs on your team. Their perspective, energy, and introductions as you grow are worth the investment. Especially for first-time founders who need someone to walk the journey with.” — Kory Kelly, CEO at Legal Karma
A Co-Creative Building Process
Joining our studio means having a powerful operating team from day one. As former SaaS founders and operators, we will build and validate your company quickly, by your side.
- An experienced team who will validate, build and help you launch an MVP and provide support as you scale.
- Your first designer — to uncover your customers’ journeys, embed the product with the value proposition and delight your early users
- Your first sales team — to design a winning GTM strategy and execute early to achieve initial traction
- Your first build team — to quickly develop the first product we’ll sell together, establish the product roadmap, and help build the team to execute
- Your supporting “village” in the journey of starting and growing a business — your team, the space to share wins & losses, ups & downs, and the team that will help you build your team
- A $250K USD investment, and an end-to-end fundraising playbook and network to raise your seed and Series A
- $100K worth of business perks
How Forum is Different
Go from concept to launch in record time with the support of Forum’s Studio. Forum’s Venture Studio provides capital, resources, and the necessary expertise for B2B SaaS founders to help launch and develop an idea into a successful business. Since 2014, we’ve worked with SaaS founders everywhere, launching more than 50 SaaS companies in Canada and the US with over 300 companies in our portfolio.
Forum’s Venture Studio provides a supportive environment for entrepreneurs to brainstorm and collaborate with other entrepreneurs and experienced VCs. For those who don’t identify as a founder or who have traditionally been overlooked by VCs (i.e. BIPOC founders, founders without a prestigious school background), Forum’s Venture Studio provides the perfect launching pad for their business ideas. It offers funding, mentorship, and guidance so that they can start and grow their businesses on an even playing field.
“At Forum, we believe that anyone can become a successful entrepreneur with the right resources and guidance. Our Venture Studio is designed to provide aspiring founders with the resources and knowledge necessary to make the leap from idea to success.” — Partner at Forum Ventures
Support from Day 1
From day one, you’ll have full access to business services and resources to build your company.
- Unlimited access to our shared services for Finance, HR, Operations, and other important company functions.
- Customer introductions to key executives in our 100+ close-knit enterprise community.
- 25+ top-tier VC Fund introductions when you go out to raise your next round as part of our Investor Week.
- $100k worth of business perks in your first year alone from companies like Brex, Hubspot, Stripe, and more.
- Access to a huge community of other B2B SaaS founders who have been in your shoes and are actively helping other founders in our program.
- Access to the Forum Network, including mentors, founders community and InnoForum peer community
- In addition to the creation process, Forum has an end-to-end fundraising support process to help you raise your seed and series A rounds.
“Forum Ventures was amazing to work with hands-on operators, mentors and ex-operators. In a short while, we took our product that customers were excited about to messaging that customers loved. We formalized go-to-market plans, and improved our targeted pitch. My MD and I were like cofounders brainstorming about GTM approaches, texting each other and figuring out our Product Market fit and GTM strategy.” Vijay Viswanathan, Cofounder and CEO
At Forum’s Venture Studio, we believe in creating an environment where passionate entrepreneurs can thrive and succeed. Our network can provide invaluable insight and advice regarding the business, as well as potential industry contacts. We are dedicated to helping our members develop their skills and navigate the challenges of entrepreneurship. With our support, you can make your dream a reality!
Let’s build the next SaaS Startup together!
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