Success stories

Success Stories

Mind the Bridge has a large alumni community who have come through our startup school, and so we like to keep in touch with them as they continue to scale their businesses either in Silicon Valley or other parts of the world.
Here are a few success stories from our alumni, whether they are financing rounds or exits, we want to share their accomplishments with the world!
AdEspresso helps brands better optimize and take advantage of their presence on Facebook’s advertising platform with clients ranging from small and medium businesses to large corporates like Hubspot and Microsoft.<br /> The San Francisco-Italian company first crossed paths with Mind the Bridge when they joined our November 2012 Startup School. Since then AdEspresso has doubled their personnel size each year, reaching 40 people. The decision was made to leave engineer and design in Italy, while expanding management and marketing to California. AdEspresso has also raised $3M+ from a range of investors that included 500 Startups and the Vegas Tech Fund. In 2017 AdEspresso was acquired by the Canadian unicorn Hootsuite, confirming the soundness of its business. As the Hootsuite CEO puts it, “everybody is happy” - and we are too!
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Charity Stars is a platform that lets famous people from the entertainment and sports world help a non-profit cause by associating their brand with it. Customers can bid on experiences, such as a trip to meet a famous football star, and the proceeds of the winning bid go to a cause supported by the athlete or entertainer. The Co-Founder and CEO of CharityStars is MTB alumnus Francesco Nazari Fusetti. Francesco is the first one in the world to use a cryptocurrency for a not-for-profit and the first Italian to close an ICO! And If that wasn’t enough the CharityStars AIDCoin token sold out in 90 mins, also a record, for a total of about 16M raised in ICO!
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The US adventure of Timbuktu Labs began when the two female co-founders, Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo, joined the Mind the Bridge Startup School in March 2012. Packed with energy and incredible creativity, they started out their business as an iPad magazine for kids and parents, and they expanded it as far as to work with several brands to identify emerging trends and needs and design strategies through validated family research. Their vision brought them to several accomplishments - here’s just a few: Timbuktu Magazine won of the Best Design Award at LAUNCH Education and Kids 2012 and was the winner of Best Children’s Magazine of the Year at the Digital Magazine Awards 2013. For the 2014 Bordeaux Biennale of Architecture, Timbuktu designed an interactive playground for children. It was awarded with the 1st Special Mention as a leading example of how new technologies can be implemented in traditional game play mechanics to drive social innovation. But here come the best: The 2 books of the series “Good night stories for Rebel Girls” are the 2 most funded books in crowdfunding history, and they were both in the New York Times top 5 Best sellers list - something never seen before!!
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Francesco Baschieri had already been successful in the past with Waymedia, founded in 2007, and sold 3 years later. He flew to California ready for his new venture, Spreaker, a platform to create, promote, and monetize podcasts and radio live streams. When he arrived in San Francisco Mind the Bridge gave Francesco his first experience with the bay area method of venture capital and business development, which eventually led to him establishing Spreaker HQ in New York. Our modules on “Dual Companies” surely made an impression on Francesco, as he left the engineering part of the company in Spain and Italy, while the US entity and team focus on the sales and marketing. At the very beginning of 2018 Francesco announced that Spreaker had been bought by the NY based media company, Voxnest. Francesco is one of the first students of the MTB Startup School, as a matter of fact in 2010 the program was still called the “Gym”. Keep up the good work!
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