Blog | The Startup Studio Model
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The Startup Studio Model

I have been finding that people are curious about the concept of startup studios in general. I loosely define startup studios as small teams working on multiple projects in parallel with reusable infrastructure – hoping to turn those projects into companies. It is not a new concept but one that seems to be picking up steam.


The startup studio concept has been around for a long time but there is a growing number of new studios taking root. The feel of these studios reminds me of the early entrepreneur led private equity firms I encountered while in corporate finance – except those firms bought and built rather started and built. Then, in the late 1990’s Bill Gross was really the leader of the movement – investing heavily in the model most did understand at idealab. Today, we have firms like Obvious, Science Inc., and betaworks that continue this tradition of discovery, creation, and adventure. This new breed of firm seems to have perfected the model. Often they are led by superstar entrepreneurs investing their own money. It is really inspiring. These firms have shown that entrepreneurship is a craft. An art.


They opened the door for a new type of hybrid firm. What’s really exciting for seasoned entrepreneurs is that the model is explicit that investors are backing the team and their ability to create. It’s never been possible to try concepts so cheaply, so fast with as much upside.The model really provides a new structure for success/failure of experiments.


We are at the dawn of a boom of this type of firm. There will be all sorts of firms using this model in their own way. Just like lower costs, open platforms, access to capital, and new markets provided fertile land for the indy studio movement in video games – I think we will see the same conditions prove fruitful for indy startup studios. Studios like echoseven labs.


If you are interested in the startup studio model, check out the useful links and our growing list of studios.


What Others Say:


Makeshift (@choosenick) Startup Studios. Are they a thing?


Spook Studio via Medium WTF is a Startup Studio anyway?


Venturebeat (@alidiallo) How ‘venture builders’ are changing the startup mode


Wired (@issielapowski) The Next Big Thing You Missed: Tech Superstars Build ‘Startup Factories’


Startupprod (@startupprob) The Foundry Investment Model


eFounders (@efounders) Startup Studio: the 3rd Co founder Model


TechCrunch (@leenarao) The Rise of Company Builders 


A List of Studios:


We are working on maintaining a list of other startup studios doing cool stuff.  If you have any additions, let us know. We hope to keep this list active.


– h (@mhannus)