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0/ THREAD: Yesterday, we @ideocolab announced our new Startup Studio to accelerate the world's best blockchain startups, in partnership with over 20 leading organizations and protocols.

In this thread, I’ll share why and how we decided to do this.

1/ First I want to thank @coindesk @DanielGKuhn @pete_rizzo_ and @TheBlock__ @Yogita_Khatri5 @mdudas for covering yesterday, as well as the support from our partners and the general blockchain community.

2/ For many people in the #blockchain and #crypto community, this was the first time they've heard of @ideo, @ideocolab, or the fact that we've been working deeply in the blockchain/crypto space since early 2015 with many of the industry's leading crypto projects and people.
3/ Some of our team, like @delitzer (ex @MITBitcoinClub), @GavinMcDermott (ex @BitGo), and myself (ex @CitiVentures) have been in the crypto space even longer, but we as @ideocolab (incl. @taratan @AdamDoesAThing @Joe__Gerber) have been working in it since 2015.

So who is IDEO?
4/ @ideo is a 40 year old design and innovation company, started in the early 1980s by a pioneer @kelleybros who also founded Stanford's Design School @stanforddschool and is still a professor there.

@kelleybros and IDEO pioneered the field of user/human-centered design.
5/ IDEO has used its user/human-centered design approach to help companies like Apple create the world's first usable mouse, which helped bring personal computing to the mainstream, as PCs at the time were very difficult to use by everyday people.…
6/ In the early 1980s, IDEO also helped design the world's first laptop-style computer, which made computers (awkward and heavy at the time) more sleek, lightweight, and portable.

This would transform the future of mobile computing.…
7/ Over the years, IDEO has worked on hundreds of things that are now widely adopted today, but also worked with many startups like @PillPack (acquired in 2018 by @amazon for $1B), which IDEO helped incubate/accelerate in 2014 to redesign the pharmacy.…
8/ Fast forward to today, IDEO continues to partner with leading companies from @Google @Ford @Nike to explore, design, and create the future.

For example, here's IDEO's recent work in the area of future mobility systems and autonomous vehicles:…
9/ With that context, we saw Bitcoin in 2015, were curious, and decided to play around with it. As designers, we're constantly tinkering with weird, cool new technologies to see what they might be able to do for people/society, and this decentralized P2P global digital money fit.
10/ Back then, IDEO didn't have any in-house crypto experts, so we hired @delitzer @GavinMcDermott @taratan and brought together a group of industry partners including @CitiVentures @Fidelity @Nasdaq @medialab @innovationlab to explore Bitcoin together. @ideocolab was then born.
11/ What we learned together in 2015 was FAR greater than what we could have alone. By bringing together multiple types disciplines, people, organizations & industries, we uncovered insights into blockchain's future 6-12 months ahead of the rest of the market. So what did we do?
12/ We started building. I mean #BUIDL-ing.

In August 2015, Becca Chacko & @GavinMcDermott tokenized real estate using blockchain to make real estate ownership more accessible to people. 4 years later, that opportunity is just now starting to take off.…
13/ In 2015, @demibrener and @maraoz were also brought in as residents at @ideocolab, working along side our team as they were exploring and shaping what would ultimately become @ZeppelinOrg @zeppelin_os.
14/ In 2016, we partnered with @Nasdaq @FilamentHQ and energy firms to create a distributed energy network and market using blockchains. Months later, more energy firms started entering the blockchain space and this continues to be a major area of pursuit…
15/ Also in 2016, that's when we started working with more blockchain startups and protocols like @ethereum @blockstack @21dotco @IPFSbot and others to build weird new things, like this gun that recorded activity on Ethereum and IoT system on @IPFSbot:…
16/ However in 2017, our work @ideocolab went to the next level. Our team's insights, expertise, and relationships had accumulated to the point where we started more deeply partnering and working with leading crypto projects like @AugurProject @joeykrug @ZcashFoundation & others
17/ In 2018, we went a step further, by launching our investing program, to invest alongside other leading VCs to help early-stage blockchain/crypto startups in ways only we can. We've made 9 investments so far and now invest in about 12 companies a year.

18/ We're proud to not only be investors in @NEARProtocol, @MessariCrypto, @rarebits_io @usebraintrust @zeppelin_os @HNS @toshitreasure & 2 others (unannounced) but more importantly, helping them with design, product, user testing, brand, go to market, & getting launch customers.
19/ For us though, it's about people. Helping, working and learning from great ones.

@jcp @jillruthcarlson @adamludwin @zooko @twobitidiot @adamjacksonsf @KevinChou @AlexSkidanov @thibauld @wheatpond are just a few we've been honored to work with.

20/ And so, the launch of our Startup Studio builds on the shoulders of IDEO and the founding pioneers of user/human-centered design.

It builds on @ideocolab's approach to problem solving through collaboration (and external partners), multi-disciplinary teams, and diverse teams.
21/ But most importantly, our Startup Studio builds on our focus on people, which comes to the "Why" we decided to do this and make intentional choices like:

- Unbundling the accelerator model
- Our programs are free to startups
- Which partners we chose for the launch
22/ Before ultimately landing on the Startup Studio model, in November 2018, I started doing research by talking to dozens of world class entrepreneurs and developers in the blockchain space about their needs and where they could be better served.

What I found was interesting…
23/ The first finding was that the venture capital ecosystem broadly and crypto in particular has SO much money sloshing around now, that much of venture capital (from the perspective of the entrepreneur) has become commoditized.

Capital is a commodity, but value add is scarce.
24/ I heard things like "many VCs are not value add, they're value destroying."

Wow. Needless to say, that's not what I nor @ideocolab came here to do, given who we are and what we do.

But it was fascinating to hear that from successful founders. That's a major design problem.
25/ The second major finding was in the accelerator space: many of the world's best founders no longer go through generalized accelerator programs that have now been around for 10-15 years.

70% of Series A backed founders do not go through an accelerator. They don't need to.
26/ But in talking with many of these serial entrepreneurs, they still have needs, no matter how many $1 billion+ exits they've had.

But their needs are VERY different:

- They need help in more specialized and advanced ways
- They want to be a part of a more focused community
27/ So I set out with the team @ideocolab in early 2019 to reimagine an accelerator program that ONLY designed for the needs of the world's best founders who have no problem raising capital.

And that is how the Startup Studio program was born.
28/ The IDEO CoLab Startup Studio, announced yesterday, accelerates the world's best blockchain startups and entrepreneurs with a network of over 20 leading partner organizations and protocols.

29/ While it accelerates startups/founders, it's designed very differently:

_Half/full day acceleration programs each focused on 1 specialized topic
_FREE for startups/founders to participate
_Programs run by @ideocolab & our partner organizations
_Blockchain focused community
30/ Which is why we intentionally decided to bring in the partners we did (and we may bring in more). None of our partners were included because of the marketing or money--we chose each of them because of the specific value add that they bring the entrepreneurs we want to serve.
31/ My first design principle was to bring in the best-in-class partners in their respective fields.

My second design principle was to bring in partners who were not only great to work with, but also ones who bring something really important and necessary to blockchain ecosystem
32/ If you've read this far, thank you, because I'm going to walk through each of our 2019 launch partners and share what they're bringing to the table and entrepreneurs in the space:
33/ @AWSstartups team is one of the best in the world in helping early-stage founders & startups quickly/cheaply build, deploy & operate web services so they can get into market & in front of their customers faster. @holdenbrad is a friend & we've been working together for years.
34/ @atrium is one of the fastest growing, mostly widely used technology-enabled legal firms in Silicon Valley, and more and more blockchain projects are working with Atrium to quickly/cheaply setup their companies and raise money. @Barbash heads Atrium's blockchain practice.
35/ @AvantaVentures is the venture arm of @CSAAInsuranceGp, which is looking to accelerate, invest in, and partner with blockchain startups in the insurance, mobility, and IoT spaces. @sbernardez from their team is super and was a @ONSETVentures (spun out of IDEO in the 80s).
36/ @CalBlockchain is one of the world's leading student-run blockchain organizations. Their work over the years is incredible, as well as their talent networks at the university and post-grad level. Great startups need great talent. @SarojChin is a Co-President. Go Bears!
37/ @brexHQ is one of the world's fastest growing unicorn fintech companies, providing startups with super fast access to corporate credit to get moving faster. They're offering a special deal for startups who participate in our Startup Studio too!
38/ @CoinList is the industry leader in compliant token sales, and @andy_bromberg has been a close friend of @delitzer's and @ideocolab for a number of years now. We've done multiple events over the last few years. We have some big things coming up together, so more on that soon.
39/ @Deloitte and specifically their accounting and tax team have been doing some of the most complex accounting and tax advisory work in the crypto space since 2013-2014. Rob, the head of the practice, is also a friend who I met at @coindesk Consensus 2015.
40/ @ElectricCapital is one of the leading crypto investors who have highly complementary skills and networks to @ideocolab's. Our values are very aligned, @avichal @MariaShen have been collaborating with us for months now and are practically family. We really love this team.
41/ @ETHGlobal is bringing thousands of developers into the Ethereum and blockchain ecosystem, and we're excited to be partnering with @TheRealKartik @0xstark and their team on a number of programs this year. We look forward to learning a lot from them.
42/ @Fidelity and @fidelitylabs is a global leader in financial services, and their approach to the blockchain space is very similar to ours in terms of openness and the emerging digital asset economy. Fidelity has been a partner of @ideocolab from the very beginning in 2015.
43/ GS Group is a major conglomerate based in South Korea, that has large businesses in the energy, retail, distribution, trade & construction industries. They're looking to support and accelerate blockchain startups in those verticals, as well as help with US-Korea opportunities
44/ Hanwha is also a major conglomerate based in South Korea, that has major businesses in the aerospace, materials, financial services, solar, and entertainment industries. They are also looking to invest and accelerate blockchain startups in those verticals in US and Asia.
45/ @MessariCrypto is the industry leader in bringing transparency and trust to the crypto asset industry, through its data tools, registry project, and more. @twobitidiot has been a close friend of @delitzer and mine for 5+ years, and Messari is also a portfolio company of ours.
46/ @PerkinsCoieLLP is one of the best law firms with one of the deepest and largest benches of blockchain/crypto lawyers that have worked on some of the most important projects in the space. They'll be providing startups with their incredible expertise. @LowellDNess @JDaxHansen
47/ @she_256 is an incredible orgnaization, as they're working to bring more diversity into the blockchain ecosystem. "To design for the world, you need to invite the world into the design process." We're going to do important things together starting this summer @AlexisGauba
48/ @SVB_Financial banks nearly every Silicon Valley Startup and wants to support and help more and more companies in the growing blockchain ecosystem. We've gotten to know their team a lot over the last year, and we're super excited to be partnering with them this year.
49/ Last but not least, we've brought in 5 leading Layer 1 protocols as partners including @ethereum @NEARProtocol @OasisLabs @StellarOrg @TezosFoundation as the Startup Studio is an industry initiative to accelerate global adoption of blockchain technology and applications.
50/ Many of the world's best teams and projects are built on their protocols and platforms, and we're looking forward to working with them to support developers and startups building applications and services that have a great chance of solving important problems in the world.
51/ More to come soon on this front, but it's been great to have @robbiebent1 @AlexSkidanov @ilblackdragon @dawnsongtweets @RaymondCheng00 @DenelleDixon @christianrudder @AMangiero and many others coming together as an industry on this shared goal.
52/ We'll look to VERY selectively bring on new partners, so please reach out if that's of interest.

But now our attention goes back to building and working with great teams and startups to help them realize their visions and make an impact.
53/ The @ideocolab team and extended network of experts at IDEO are here, ready to jump in. @AdamDoesAThing @taratan @GavinMcDermott @delitzer @Joe__Gerber myself, and so many others here can't wait to build with you, as we have been for so many years (and many more to come).
53/ So if you're a world class entrepreneur or startup in the blockchain space and want some love and support, join our community and apply to our Startup Studio programs here:

@ideocolab and all 20+ partner organizations are here to help.
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