Business Incubation Program

Start your own “Drones-as-a-Service” business

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With the introduction of drone mapping technology five years ago, a large number of new small business ventures have since been created worldwide, tackling a variety of issues that were either addressed by very costly and difficult-to-deploy technology or had no solution. Tanzania is facing many of these issues, due to natural disasters, infrastructure and agriculture development and challenges related to climate change, creating a local market need where drone technology can provide solutions.

WeRobotics in partnership with Tanzania Flying Labs, the Tanzanian Data Lab (dLab) and the Dar Teknohama Business Incubator (DTBi) are hosting a business incubation program on how to leverage technical skills and readily available drone mapping hard- and software to create a drone-related service business in Tanzania. The program includes:

Participation in this program is free of charge, including the pitching workshop for all teams who have contributed with an idea and the one-week seminar for the 4 finalist teams. The program is sponsored by following partners:

FL Tanzania B
logo-dtbi
dlab

After reading the FAQ, feel free to email Tanzania Flying Labs at TFL-Admin@werobotics.org if you have any remaining questions.

FAQ

I. Who can participate in “Drones as a Service Business” Incubation Program?

This event is for people who are interested in learning how to use drone technology in a service business. Your team should have people with following skills:

  • Drone operator/pilot
  • GIS/Imagery specialist (if idea involves mapping and aerial imagery)
  • Business and Marketing/Sales
  • A team should have at least one engineer

II. What is the minimum and maximum number of individuals allowed in a team?

The maximum members you can have in a team is 4. To be called a team, you need a minimum of 2 people.

III. How can I participate and submit my idea?

To participate, you need to register. To register, click here. Submit the necessary details and we will get back to you.

IV. Do we have to build our drone product?

No. The idea should take advantage of readily available drones (hardware and software) already on the market to start a service business.

V. Do we have to develop only a business idea?

To register, all you need is a business idea. Your idea will then be evaluated by local panel of judges. If your idea is selected, your team will then move on to the next step of the program, the one-week business seminar as one of the 4 finalist teams. The seminar will help you expand upon your business idea, and afterwards you will be given 4 weeks to create a finalized version for the business plan competition.

VI. Are there any criteria to participate?

You must live in Tanzania and you, together with your teammates, should already possess the necessary technical knowledge and skills to operate drones, acquire data and generate service products like for example maps, 3D models, indexes, etc. You also must be motivated to create your own business using drone technology.

VII. Can I submit more than one idea?

No. You can only be in one team and that team can only submit one idea for their business.

VIII. What happens after submission of idea?

We will closely evaluate your idea and team. If selected, you’ll receive an email soon giving you further details of the competition.

IX. Can I change or update details of my idea or team after submission?

Yes, you can until August 4, 2017. To do so, send us an email with detailed information on why you want to change the details and what changes you would like to make.

X. What if two teams happen to submit similar idea?

The idea isn’t the most important thing. The team, their experience, and their solution to the problem is what we evaluate. Teams will compete even if ideas are similar, unless there is foul play or cheating.

XI. What is the seminar for?

The goal of the one-week business seminar (September 18 – 22, 2017) is to provide you with the necessary business tools to convert your idea into a valid and sustainable business plan. The seminar will give you the necessary business skills to set up your own business. During the seminar, you will start creating the business plan that you will  keep on working during the following 4 weeks (business plan incubation period) to prepare your final business plan and pitch for the competition.

XII. What are the place and dates of the seminar and business plan iteration phase?

Business seminar: September 18 – 22, 2017 (5 days, full day program)

Business plan iteration phase: September 23 – October 20, 2017

Final competition: last week of October 2017

The business plan seminar and final competition will be held in Dar es Salaam

XIII. Can all members of the team participate in the seminar, iteration phase and final competition

Ideally the entire team should participate. We require however at least always a minimum of two members for all parts of the program (seminar, iteration phase, final competition).

XIV. What are the judging criteria for selecting finalists?

The following criteria will be used to choose the four finalist teams:

  • How well defined is the business idea and how applicable is it in Tanzania?
  • How realistic is the idea in terms of using readily available drones and software?
  • How appropriate are the skills of the team members to convert the idea into a business?
  • How diverse are the team’s skills?
  • What examples and experiences can the team already show for?
  • How motivated is the team?

XV. What are the prizes?

The four finalists will be able to participate free of charge in our one week top notch business seminar. Upon successful completion, the teams will receive TSH 1’000’000 (one million Tanzanian Shilling) as well as local mentorship for the following 4 weeks of the business plan iteration phase.

The final winning team will receive mentorship and office space for a limited business incubation period of 4 – 6 months as well as a fund to kick-start their business for a total value of TSH 10’000’000 (ten million Tanzanian Shilling).