2017: Exits, ICOs and other highlights @ MTB Startup School

Now that we’ve completed the 2017 “post-mortem” of all the Mind the Bridge activities, it’s a good time to share a few highlights from MTB Startup School and the top success stories of the year coming from our alumni around the world.


MTB-STARTUP-SCHOOL-2 (1)The community of startups who have attended a Startup School batch has grown to 400+ founders (representing 300+ startups).

While the news of the day is the first successful ICO by one of the MTB Startup School Alumni (Charity Stars [MTB 2012] raised $7M in just 90 minutes for its AidCoin project + a $4M of pre-sales), the year has been filled with a number of promising news from our alumni. From the exciting Exit of AdEspresso (incidentally from the same batch of Charity Stars) to the explosion in popularity of the Rebel Girls phenomena (2 books in the top 5 New York Times bestseller list! HERE on CNN). We feel particularly proud that all those projects were initiated in our Startup School.

Speaking of women power: our female founder participation has significantly increased. In 2017 our Startup School sessions had 33% female participation (vs 22% of YC, just saying…) coming from the following countries: Korea, Kuwait, and Italy. This is an 8% increase over last year.

Why is female participation is a vital KPI for us?

Diversity is one of the most important points for Mind the Bridge, given our international origins and presence. “Diversity unlocks innovation by creating an environment where “outside the box” ideas are heard”. Diversity in origins, languages, and genders is a key part of innovation at an international level, and our startup school embodies that.


We are also very proud of announcing that MTB Startup School now has alumni in 22 countries! The following is a list of them: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, Kuwait, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, Turkey, UK, and USA.

While we are proud of this growing list of nationalities, we are most happy about what we see happening in our startup school when groups from these countries come to together. Mixing groups of Koreans and Middle Eastern founders and startups is where we realize the true potential of international diversity and a global Startup School program.

Speaking of MTB Startup School alumni nationalities, how about some of their successes of the past few years?

Here are some of the highlights.


Rounds of financing:

Replex raised €1.5M in Germany

Papem raised 430KM in Italy

SwiftComply raised $900K, after opening their office in Silicon Valley this year

Girlcrew raised an undisclosed amount

Beonprice raised €1.4M euros

Mindesk raised €670K

Luxrobo raised $5.66M in total, of which $3.6M was raised in 2017

– Italy-based startup Mathesia raises €700K following #MTBStartupSchool



Hootsuite acquires startup @AdEspresso

Simoni Lisi, “Summer School” 2011, sold Waynaut, which was founded back in 2012, to

– Charity Stars raised $7M for its AidCoin project + a $4M of pre-sales


Amazing Milestones:

D-Orbit launched a space missile to bring satellites back to earth (July 2017)

Filippo Yacob ( making #ForbesU30Europe class of 2017

We truly <3 serial #Alumni entrepreneurs! Break a leg @Fed26mi: after interiorBe a new, foody adventure  (1 Mar 2017)


Giving Back

Our last great story is FattureInCloud, which this year decided to give back and support one of the startups that will be attending the 2018 program with us. Ludwig was the winner of the itCup award 2017 – an Italian startup competition at its 5th edition – and from October of this past year. It’s great to see our alumni acknowledging the value of the program and helping to support other startups in getting the opportunity to attend.

Overall, 2017 has been a great successful year.

Regarding the 2018, we have already started on a good foot preparing the Startup School schedule with our reconfirmed partners.

Stay tuned for our next session through our website: