The last few months were intense at the Waldo HQ but we can say proudly that hard work always pays off in the end. During these cold winter months our main focus was getting the MVP in shape, warming up our audience and seeking the right problem-solution fit.
Weaponed with lots of feedback, Waldo as a product evolved quickly and the time was right to begin to focus on scaling our activities. Therefore, the battle for accelerators began and a few months ago we took a shot at two programs. After an intense selection procedure and keeping Waldo’s business as usual going, the news came in. We didn’t hit a target… We hit two bulls’ eyes! 🎯
Ask-Waldo is going full throttle with a new Belgian and International scale-up program. Read along!
The golden cage for our parrot
Shortly after the idea behind Ask-Waldo hatched in 2019, we couldn’t think of a better environment to grow our little parrot than at ‘Birdhouse’. Formerly known as ‘Aerey’, the accelerator program has succesfully boosted 8 rounds of start-ups to become the businesses they dreamt to be. Some of them really broke through and evolved into the flourishing businesses they are today. Almost 9 out of 10 of Birdhouse’s alumni are still in business today and provide employment to 240 people.
Jan-Willem Callebauts’ in- and extensive scale-up program has been around since 2016 and it goes without saying that it has had its impact on Belgium’s entrepreneurship. Therefore we’re extremely proud to be part of the 9th ‘cohort’ of 15 start-ups to get our product ‘outta there’!
The perfect lovebirds
Without making too many bird-related puns, the Birdhouse-program really matches perfectly with our needs and goals. Not only the name fits perfectly with our spirit animal but also the core of the program does with our key philosophy. From the beginning it wanted to play a connecting role in the Belgian start-up landscape and has really walked the talk so far. Connecting, sharing, etc.., it is music to our ears:
“Birdhouse supports explosive growth, from start-up to scale-up, by sharing knowledge and expertise, offering intensive, personal coaching and by offering access to an invaluable network and capital.”
The program goes for quality and a personal approach, no one-size-fits-all story. That’s why of all accelerators in Belgium, Birdhouse really stood out of the rest. It’s an understatement to say that we’re really excited and are looking forward to begin this adventure towards scale and new opportunities.
Check out the website of Birdhouse.
Check out the article of Bloovi about the last batch of start-ups last summer.
Spreading our wings in Latin-America.
As if the Birdhouse story wasn’t already enough, the Chilean dream that started in November just became reality. After a long and competitive selection procedure for the biggest Start-Up accelerator of Latin-America we got chosen as one of the 50-ish start-ups to enter Start-Up Chile! Yes, you’ve read this right. Chile, from the country.
Two weeks from now our two co-founders Chiel and Robin will set sail for Santiago and embark on an international adventure to represent the Belgian tech-scene. First up: the Chilean Andes.
As biggest Latin-American accelerator for start-ups from all over the world, Start-Up Chile consists of a vast network of potential partners and incredible know-how. Because of its global nature it is one of the biggest and most diverse communities in the world. Every year hundreds of startups apply and in the past 10 years the accelerator boosted almost 2000 start-ups in their overall development of which more than half are still active today. This is good for a 2.1 billion US$ valuation with only ¼ being Chilean companies.
Belgian-Chilean Win Win
The unique opportunity to combine the forces of Birdhouse and Start-Up Chile was something all parties could agree upon. This way we can make two strong networks into one and search for spillovers.
Contrary to Birdhouse or other accelerators in general, the main goal of SU-Chile is to make Santiago a real start-up hub. However supercharging growth of the start-ups it welcomes is the start, it wants to really foster win-wins for locals and expats. Apart from that, it is also committed to support women-founded companies. Chile is one of the most women-friendly countries in the world and wants to highlight this through the program. That’s why at least 50% of all nominees are being run by women.
As a company with a future mindset, Ask-Waldo perfectly fits with the culture behind Start-Up Chile. “We’re really looking forward to work together with partners from all over the world, boosting our own businesses but also contributing to the start-up hub Santiago already is and wants to be. Synergies is our way to go.”, says Chiel.
Check out the website of Start-Up Chile or go take a look at this interesting experience blog of a Start-Up Chile company!
Our international story didn’t go by unnoticed. Check out our story in some local and less local press releases. Enjoy! 🤩
- Made in Vlaams-Brabant – We are Made In Vlaams-Brabant’s “Starter of the week”, read all about it! 👉 Click here
- HR Square – One of the top online magazines related to HR Tech featured us in their newsletter. 👉 Click here
- Het Laatste Nieuws – the most read Belgian newspaper gave us an article in their local press about Leuven, our hometown. 👉 Click here