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Zinc, the London-based company builder tackling various societal problems, has picked up £3 million in seed investment as it readies its second cohort and mission. Backing the round is LocalGlobe, Niklas Zennström’s Atomico, U.K. university LSE, and a number of angel investors.
Launched late last year, Zinc helps build startups almost from scratch. Somewhat similar to Entrepreneur First, it focuses on recruiting potential founders — in this instance, experts in social science, technology, design and business — who through the 9-month programme form new companies.
Zinc - Cohort - Mission - Theme - Debut
Each Zinc cohort is tasked with tackling a specific mission around a broader theme. The debut programme, which was used to prove the model and is currently drawing to a close, set out to create startups that can tackle the problem of women’s mental and emotional health. This saw 55 prospective founders and entrepreneurs participate, resulting in 17 new companies being formed.
They span tech-enabled businesses working on problems as diverse as perinatal mental health, loneliness amongst the elderly, young women discovering sexual pleasure, stress-related physical conditions like IBS, women walking safely in cities, new talking therapies, and more. One criteria of Zinc-founded companies is that the resulting solution needs to be applicable globally, and that the problem being tackled affects a large enough number of people in the developed world ie ~100 million or more.
Issues - Talent - Ideas - Capital - Approach
“We try to solve huge societal issues by mobilising talent, ideas and capital, and by taking a mission-led approach,” Ella Goldner, co-founder and GM of Zinc, tells TechCrunch. “Our programme does so by finding the best talent, surrounding them with smarts experts to help them build new tech-enabled scalable businesses, and help them develop products and services that tackle the issues in the context of the mission”.
Zinc’s second mission, which the company builder is currently recruiting for, will see it focus on the...
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