StudioHub On Supporting The Success Of Startup Studios

Craig Kronenberger
Startup Studio Insider
11 min readJul 6, 2021

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StudioHub spotlight by Startup Studio Insider

The world of startup building can be a lonely place — especially if you decide to take on the entrepreneurial journey alone. One of the many things that makes the startup studio model so appealing is that you are surrounded by a team of creatives who are passionate about building innovative, disruptive businesses. StudioHub takes this collaborative approach to startup building to the next level.

StudioHub is a community of European startup studios and venture builders that connects and celebrates both the big and small wins of their network. The outlet operates an engaging blog full of useful content for entrepreneurs and startup enthusiasts, and they even facilitate events and webinars to share useful insights from industry experts.

StudioHub supports startup studios all around the world.

With our shared passion for the startup studio model, we couldn’t wait to dive into a conversation with StudioHub on their perspective of the startup ecosystem. Read on to find out how they are helping to expand the most promising players in the startup studio space. Who knows, you may be interested in joining the StudioHub network!

What unique benefits does the startup studio model provide entrepreneurs in today’s world?

Startup studios are one of the most attractive and probably most efficient models to date in venture building. The startup studio promise is greater in terms of return and timing than any other model in the startup ecosystem: 2x bigger return on investment, half of the time required for an exit, and this list can go on and on. In addition to these, venture builders offer a track record of numerous exits before building another one, validated processes (ideation, venture creation, etc.), talent opportunities, an environment that breeds innovation. All of this consequently creates a model with less risk, mostly because the startup studio founders are already experienced, entrepreneurs.

I. Investment opportunity

Attractive financial and timing metrics indicate the opportunity and potential for the startup studio model both for investors and the founders. Average timings for exits, from 0 to Series A, graduation rates, and returns are much more favorable compared to industry benchmarks.

  • Time to Exit: Startups born within startup studios require less time to exit. For startup studios, the average time from foundation to exit is 4 years, compared to more than 8 years for a startup following a traditional path.
  • Valuation: Start-up studios produce more successful exits in terms of valuations. The median valuation is $74 million, compared to $50 million for exits from VCs. We can therefore state that startup studios produce more exits with a higher valuation than Venture Capital funds. The exit rate, calculated as the ratio between the number of investments and the number of exits completed, stands at 16% with a 9–30% range. Not surprisingly, the longer the number of years a startup studio has been active, the more experience they have gained, and the higher their exit rate: Betaworks, operating since 2007, has the highest Exit rate, almost 30%.
  • Public listing: The research shows the number of acquisitions exceeding IPOs, but it is worth highlighting that the percentage of exits from startup studios through IPOs is three times higher than in Venture Capital funds.
  • Seed funding & graduation rates: For startups born from the startup studio model, day 0 to the seed round takes about 11 months, and seed to series A takes roughly 14 months. Traditional startups take as long as 3 years just to reach a seed round. It takes a traditional startup more than twice as long (56 months) to reach a Series A round, compared to a startup studio that reaches the same goal in 25 months. Moreover, the time to exit for a traditional startup is 7 years, while for startups created in a startup studio, the exit is achieved in only about 4 years.

*(estimates are based on the recent study by Francesco Tisci, “Evaluating the Impact of Startup Studios on Startups Performance, 2020”).

II. Process optimization and success rate

On top of the external processes of Fundraising and talent search, a major advantage is the mechanisms designed for the internal processes.

  • Ideation: The startup studio model — as every structured approach- generates replicable processes and measurable metrics. The ground assumption is that you can’t build a product without knowing if it meets a real necessity, and without knowing the real needs of potential users. The process starts from an analysis of the market, aimed to know its real needs, to which follows the identification of products that can satisfy them. Once this phase is closed, tests are carried out which, if successfully passed, lead to the implementation of the product.
  • MVP & Operational model: Most of the studios have clearly set checklists for their venture-building process. With such highly standardized roadmaps, MVP becomes a matter of 3 to 6 months versus almost doubling the time in the case of startups. So once the idea comes in, it already starts being released as a product. Other processes are also automated, which is why it becomes easier to manage the studio with a single team and unified processes that guide the creation of the rest of the adherent ventures.
  • Innovation: The startup studio model is an excellent hub for innovation due to the simple reason that there are many entrepreneurs or people with entrepreneurial mindsets gathered in one place. Ideation is one of the key processes in startup studios, and even though it can be external or internal, also data-driven or market-driven, etc., it generates innovative solutions and creates an innovative environment.

III. Talent opportunity

The model is also unique in terms of talent generation or recruitment. While it is true that in corporate environments it’s easier to nurture and grow talent with smooth processes in place, refined organizational and ethical traditions, as well as training opportunities, their talents lack freedom and decision-making opportunities. On another hand, the startup ecosystem is great for innovators and fast growers and provides lots of freedom. But there’s always the risk of instability due to a lack of processes that facilitate coherent learning. Startups as independent units do not promise stability nor a high level of income, and the uncertainty for the success of the business renders it less attractive. The startup studio model is a calculated and safe environment — you have the integrated processes and resources while being free to develop your ideas or build others’ ideas into a successful business. And there is always the demand for more talent since the startup Studio model is emerging and growing quickly.

To sum up what each of the industry players gets from the Model:

  • For investors, the model suggests less risk and greater return for a single venture with less timing in the exit.
  • For studio founders it’s a way to keep a larger share in their ventures versus a simple startup model, but also a possibility to create and realize many ideas using one unique platform instead of building from scratch each time. Startup studio results = talent recruiting in a relaxed and low-risk environment
  • For talent, especially entrepreneurs in residence or founders of ventures within a single studio, the model suggests less risk, full-stack resources including processes and teams to implement their refined ideas, plus full support in fundraising and exits, hence a safer platform to achieve success.

Startup studios are the birthplace for disruptors, be it an innovative idea or a talent. This is the place where everything is shaped into perfection because the startup studio model is unique.

What sets you (StudioHub) apart from the rest of the competition in the startup studio space (other Networks)?

Many new networks are emerging and there will be even more given that the model is rapidly expanding worldwide. We gladly welcome those networks since they will ease our mission joining our global effort in delivering the value of the model.

We are providing the highest value to the studios and other players while ensuring diversity in the community and making sure that startup studios with various levels of maturity (those in early-stage, at growth stage, or mature ones) are involved within their respective context and level of expertise to gain the highest benefit. We offer tailored business opportunities connecting with other studios and ecosystem players and provide targeted services to all members.

Who we are and what we offer

The largest hub of startup studios worldwide with the broadest coverage in Europe + a bottom-up approach we already built and continuously work on an enhanced community of studios and stakeholders delivering the highest value to foster their growth and identify new business opportunities.

a. Customer experience: we carry out a deep-dive discovery of all the studios in the community — reaching out to the studios, exploring their needs, pain points, best practices, etc.

b. Heterogeneous community — we are connecting studios with their peers and with other stakeholders. StudioHub is a network of startup studios worldwide; however, we aim at targeting specifically continents and regions in varied activities. We are exclusive with the value we deliver to the studios, but we are also inclusive. The network is open for the studios worldwide and in addition to the studio stakeholders. such as investors and their communities, entrepreneurs and their communities, talent, startup ecosystem communities, and others.

c. Business opportunities — we thrive to explore business opportunities for startup studios, especially for already established ones.

d. The largest platform for studio related data intelligence, knowledge mastery, and media content

e. Deep intelligence: the most comprehensive data report on startup studios ever made answering all questions studios have regarding setup, growth, and negotiating their deals — this will be released in Spring, 2021.

f. Fundamental knowledge: The most enhanced knowledge and basic guidance is provided to studios delivered by industry experts.

g. Media portal: Original articles, news, and updates related to studios, industry, and market news are shared with the community.

h. Mastery center: The network is a center for accumulation and sharing the highest expertise by introducing the best expertise and experiences throughout the Network.

To conclude:

a. Value: The full coverage of all the needs of the studios at any stage makes the StudioHub platform stand out.

b. Traction: Geographical and segmented targeting worldwide makes us unique, and we have the largest coverage of startup studios in Europe.

c. Approach & diversity: Another huge advantage is the heterogeneity of the network.

How has your Network allowed you and your partnered studio community to navigate the pandemic?

Surely the pandemic has been hard on everyone, from a global perspective on the markets, emerging ventures, lots of uncertainty in trends, and future of investment.

And on a local level restrictions in office work for us and partners, moods of staff and generally of industry players, limitations in physical interaction and negotiations, consequential difficulties with fundraising, etc.

To be fair, the startup ecosystem in general and tech-related business had an increase based on various reports. The startup studio ecosystem was not an exception, probably thanks to the character of the organizational setup. Model is unique by the processes put up in place, hence it has been much easier to continue smooth operational flow even going on complete remote working mode as StudioHub with partners, as partnered Studios in their turn.

Also, the fact that the majority of startup studios encourage diversity allowed people to work from different parts of the world. Some Studios mention that they had even launched Ventures in an offline mode never meeting personally their founders.

On top of that for partnership opportunities since people were now used to working from home/virtual offices instead of physical meetings, it made it a bit easier to approach each other for networking if to consider time savings on travel and more flexible approaches when working remotely.

How would you describe StudioHub’s approach to developing new ideas/partnering with new studios? What services do you offer your members?

1.Approach: We educate, we disseminate, we foster growth, we connect.

Our mission is to spread the word about Startup Studio Model in the world, to educate all the Stakeholders on its benefits, and to bring them into investing in, working, or partnering with Studios.

First and foremost StudioHub builds an enhanced Network bringing together Startup Studios and Venture Builders worldwide.

At the same time, StudioHub accumulates and shares knowledge as well as best practices throughout the Network. When there are hundreds of diverse Venture Builders with their thousands of startups and of course immense mastery shared in this innovative platform, creativity is not only a must but also comes naturally.

2. Services:

Many Studios even after launching do not know answers to many of the questions cover by providing specific services:

  • How much will you spend?
  • Who you’re going to get, and therefore who you’re going to budget?
  • What and how many startups you’re going to do and how?
  • What is the benchmark when pitching?
  • How the firms that have worked are structured?
  • What processes do they have?
  • How to set up a fund?
  • How to persuade investors?

So we offer:

Knowledge & expertise

  • Market intelligence: the most extensive industry report

1) It gives studios access to up-to-date market data to include in their pitch to give substance and data to support their case when they do fundraising, and most importantly the benchmarking.

2) It provides the firm with material for marketing on its page and to its investors.

3) It allows a new Studio to understand the budget, the processes, and the different types of models in detail

4) it allows Studios not to repeat the mistakes of everyone else

  • Basic knowledge & Guidance: fundamental documents and guidance such as 1) standard terms sheets with founders- allows Studios to avoid mistakes in deals with founders and avoid losing extra money

2) terms and conditions for the fund’s constitution — allows Studios to set up initially proper governance and save money and effort

3) series of templates of firms that have already raised funds

4) pitch decks, etc.

  • Shared Expertise: 1) best practices; 2) advice by mature studios
  • Pool of theory: 1) recordings of expert talks; 2) original articles
  • Media: 1) news and updates from Studios 2) newsletters

Networking & events

  • Events: 1) webinars with industry leaders, preeminent professionals, and field experts; 2) targeted roundtables & thematic discussions
  • Networking between Studios: Intros to peers- such a wide studio network will provide an opportunity to benchmark each other, which costs time and money. through the intros, studios can quickly access other studios to share information and potentially create synergies.
  • Networking between studios and other stakeholders: making introductions to other stakeholder communities to attract investment, talent, and other business opportunities.
StudioHub offers many opportunities for networking and insightful webinars.

Brand awareness & Talent development

  • Brand awareness throughout the network also dedicated articles and highlights
  • Communicating studio best practices and value proposition to many stakeholders
  • Talent postings, introductions, sharing the announcement externally with target audiences

On top services

These services are partnered with other platforms and experts, but there are also internal resources

  • Consulting, also E-courses
  • Matchmaking
  • Literature

The list is endless and often tailored to meet the requests of our Premium Club Members. These are mature studios with the longest and most extensive experience, mainly looking out for new business opportunities.

What does StudioHub’s level of involvement look like after a Startup Studio has enough knowledge and is all set up?

We continuously support studios on all their development stages, be it a starting studio that is working on their first venture or setting up its fund structure, or a mature studio that is looking for experienced talent or branching out to other regions.

There are tailored services to meet the specific needs of those studios based on deep customer discovery. Both for growing and experienced studios, we provide respective services: on top of fundamental guidance and documentation, knowledge and network, we provide deep industry reports, expertise on a higher level, customized events, brand awareness as well as connections to other stakeholders.

On top of basic service that helps studios to set up and continuously grows we support in:

  • Business opportunities and Networking
  • Internationalization
  • Talent attraction campaigns
  • Brand awareness
  • Continuous data sourcing

These are types of services that Studios need regardless of their experience level and how well set they are.

For more information on startup studios and their inner workings, follow us on socials and check out our latest feature for Devland! Comment below for a chance to be featured in your own Startup Studio Spotlight!

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Craig Kronenberger
Startup Studio Insider

Hi, I am Craig Kronenberger — entrepreneur, business accelerator, and founder of The Startup Studio Insider. Connect with me on LinkedIn!