There are myriad ways a budding entrepreneur can seek guidance and capital while building their startup. For the reality-show minded, you could subject yourself and your business concept to Shark Tank‘s quartet of potentially vicious investors, reaping whatever rewards and/or pain resulting from the televised (and heavily edited) appearance.
Those with social-media skills could reach out to their targeted audience through Twitter, LinkedIn, and/or Facebook. Crowdfunding through Kickstarter or Indiegogo can bring in the desired capital to launch a business or product, so long as the public is interested, and the entrepreneur can deliver as promised.
Finally, there are conventional startup incubators offering advice from participating advisors, collaboration with fellow entrepreneurs, and networking with venture capitalists to acquire financing.
Founded by Carlos de Ory after success with similar concepts in New York and Miami, Housepreneurs brings advisors, investors, and selected entrepreneurs together under one roof.
The three groups live and work in the same space, all working towards the goal of building successful businesses once the class of future business barons leave the nest. Currently, 22 advisors and financiers are living with 10 entrepreneurs, working on projects ranging from room sharing and cultural education, to fitness and medical tourism.
Any entrepreneur wanting to participate in the program must first apply, then – if selected – commit to a minimum three-month stay at the Housepreneurs house, paying 490 euros ($540) per month for a bed in a shared room. In return, the participant gains access to all common spaces, weekly lectures and events, collaboration with the other resident entrepreneurs, et cetera.
There’s one caveat, however: They are expats, but English is not their native tongue.
Most, if not all, of the people involved speak Spanish natively; everyone involved has Spanish surnames, and most of the projects have Spanish-language-only websites. And while the Housepreneurs website has an English version in addition to Spanish, some of the translations are – technically speaking – not in English, but in a simulacrum of English.
Both Spanish and English versions also have their respective Projects pages swapped with each other. Thus, it’s not clear whether the startup events and meetings are in Spanish, English or both.
We had an initial email conversation with Housepreneurs advisor Pascual Aparicio, who was on Christmas break, but haven’t heard back.
Housepreneurs projects include:
- Room Exchange: “The first and biggest room exchange community,” members can exchange rooms with other members all over the world.
- Misuperabuelo: “A social and educational project aimed at collecting contents about knowledge, traditions and customs in rural areas.”
- DropYourMusic: A music service allowing users to view the playlists of clubs featuring local music before going inside.
- Mallocare: “Specialized medical treatments and health experiences for those who want to improve their health or wellbeing outside their place of origin.”
The Housepreneurs concept is an interesting one, and we expect to see more refined versions as time goes on.