Founders Programme Interview: Yatish Patel

Last month, we announced the 6th Edition of Founders Programme - our 5-week course that helps early-stage founders turn their initial concepts into venture-ready startups. Yatish Patel, CEO and Founder of BirdCurrent, and FP alumnus from our 5th cohort.

His startup will empower small businesses with flexible credit to pay suppliers as and when they need it.

Where do you sign up, we hear you ask?

We spoke with Yatish in the midst of launch (eeek) to hear about his experience on the Founders Programme. If you’ve ever launched a business you know it can be a stressful time so thanks to Yatish for taking the time to chat with us. And if you’ve never launched a business, maybe the Founders’ Programme is what you’re looking for.

A little bit of background...

Yatish is leveraging years of finance with his enthusiasm for big tech to solve problems for small businesses. He believes that small businesses have been forgotten by the FinTech revolution and “are the lifeblood of our economy, they need our support now more than ever to survive.”

The Founders Programme...

“The course has a great balance between learning together and working on the project on your own. Everyone I met had great eye-opening advice and were very encouraging.”

From the course he highlights it being extremely valuable, with different focus areas for early start-ups. He notes that everything was supported by theory and was brought to life by real life examples from what the VCs had seen before.

But how has this helped Bird Current?

We’re conscious of not running a programme for the sake of it so it was interesting to hear how Yatish has been applying what he learnt in recent times.

As they work towards product market fit they have implemented a key lean start-up method, putting the customer first, a topic that is explored throughout the 2nd week of the programme.

He also references the insights obtained through the growth marketing sessions to be particularly valuable - noting the “main character” work has allowed them to tailor their marketing efforts.

What can we do better?

We know the programme isn’t perfect so understanding what we can do better is important to us.

Yatish took part in the programme in the midst of Covid and references the lack of in person events as something that could be improved on. This is feedback we’re taking on board for the November cohort and although the programme will also be virtual, we believe there are some steps we can put in place to create more of a community between the group.

Any tips for Founders?

His recommendation to any founders attending the course is: “You won’t have the option to attend an in-depth course with a VC - to really learn how to validate your concept and find a narrative to your idea. Do your homework, come prepared and don’t miss the opportunity to really learn and exceed.”

We’ve been overwhelmed with the response so far. Applications for the 6th programme close November 1st 2021, so if you’re keen to get the same access and experience as Yatish, be sure to apply as soon as you can.

Growth wrangler. Marketer. Customer champion.

Jared has spent his career building great customer experiences. He's started up. Sold. Built new things, including a newspaperA robot dogAn omni-directional wheelchairThe most visible screen in London. And for a time, the world's biggest picture. Before Forward he led marketing and growth for Marketplace business Plentific, helping them to pivot, scale their business across Europe and raise a $30m round.

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