Startup Studios: No-Code Studios, Startup Camps, Validating Value Propositions


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🔍 Problem

Startups face a common set of challenges.

  • Validate a value proposition
  • Build a product
  • Recruit
  • Raise capital

💡 Solution

A startup studio is a company that builds companies. Startups such as Giphy, Dollar Shave Club and Liquid Death were born in startup studios.

Studios specialize in early stage company building.

Some of these companies are eventually spun off and the studio keeps an equity stake.

🏁 Players

Startup Studios


🔮 Predictions

  • Most studios will focus on a single vertical or model. Science specializes in B2C. Betaworks runs themed startup camps. High Alpha focuses on B2B SaaS.
  • Some digital agencies will morph into startup studios.
  • No-code startup studios will become major players in this space. No-code makers are pros at building things fast and cheap. Those who learn how to validate value propositions will run the table. Bram Kanstein teaches you how to do just that.

☁️ Opportunities

  • Build a startup studio focused on a single vertical or model.
  • Become an expert at validating value propositions fast. Using paid methods (Google, Facebook, IG ads). Or free methods (Reddit, Product Hunt, Indie Hackers). It’s easier to recruit and raise money when you have demand.
  • Do a hardcore year. Build a new product each month.
  • Too easy? Build a new product each week.

😠 Haters

“There are lots of startup studios. But you only listed 10.”
Read all of the Trends reports. You’ll notice that no list exceeds 10. The value of curation lies in taste and constraints. With this in mind, I picked 10 out of more than 151 startup studios. There are links below. You can dive deeper if you want.🤘

🔗 Links

  1. Sarah Mcbride, Articial Intelligence & T-Shirts — Sarah works at Betaworks. Her ambition and hustle will leave you inspired.
  2. Fabrice Grinda, #1 Angel Investor In The World — Fabrice runs FJ Labs. He’s smart, well-rounded and passionate about marketplaces.
  3. Startup Studio — This Wikipedia article covers the history and types of startup studios.
  4. What is a Startup Studio? — Kim Heras covers 4 types of startup studios: platform builders, crazy creators, execution engines and service experts.
  5. Startup Studio List — Jules Ehrhardt complied a list of 100+ startup studios and partners to follow on Twitter.
  6. The Startup Studio Ecosystem — Don Fontijn compiled a list of 201 VC firms, 169 accelerators and 151 startup studios.
  7. Idealab: L.A.’s Vintage Incubator — Bill Gross lets us in on the original plan behind IdeaLab. The OG startup studio.