My first experience of a Techstars Startup Weekend was at the start of November in Kilkenny. A full report of the five teams who formed companies and the pitches they presented can be found in my recent article on tnooz.
The startups created in Kilkenny had a distinct tours and activities focus. According to Phocuswright (as reported by Tnooz previously), tours and activities are the travel industry’s fastest growing sector, currently estimated to be worth $129 billion a year, and projected to grow to $174 billion by 2020, even though more than 80% of bookings are still made offline. Given that established OTAs account for less than 4% of tours and activities bookings, the area is wide open for innovation and disruption.
I was originally billed as a judge, very honoured, but I arrived a day early! So rather than isolate myself from the participants I did a small pivot and switched to a mentor role so I could be useful.