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Join Co-Founders if you are curious about building a product that customers will love with a bunch of like-minded, talented people.

Our vision for Northern Ireland is to create a community of innovators so powerful its people can change the world. We realise many people would love to be an entrepreneur but may not have a product idea or may not know someone who has complementary skills.

A Co-Founder is a person who, in conjunction with one or two others, is instrumental in starting a business. This unique programme aims to bring together only the most skilled and talented individuals who dream of entrepreneurship. To be considered for Co-Founders, you must have a unique set of skills. You are able to see problems that others simply can't. And you possess the experience and resilience to build a product and business with massive potential. 

The Co-Founders programme comprises 2 main components - the Hothouse and Core. Core is for ready formed teams & the Hothouse allows individuals to form teams. You can apply directly to either programme.

Hothouse - Applications open


Apply to the Hothouse to meet likeminded and talented individuals to form teams over a weekend. The strongest teams will then be eligible to join the Co-Founders Core programme and work on their product idea.


Friday 14th September 2018 (5.30pm - 9pm)

Saturday 15th September 2018 (9am - 5pm)

Venue: Catalyst Inc, Innovation Centre,

Queen’s Road Belfast

Cost FREE (however significant time commitment)

Complete the application form by Monday 27th August 2018 

Core - Applications open

Each team will be assigned a coach that will support you on your journey towards validation of your idea. Using design thinking methodology, your coach will help you focus on your customer and the problem your idea can potentially solve.


Introduction to Design Thinking: Saturday 29th September (9am - 1pm) - All candidates must be available to attend this part of the programme 

Every Monday evening from 1st October to 10th December 2018                      (6pm - 9pm) 

Venue: Catalyst Inc, Innovation Centre,

Queen’s Road Belfast

Cost FREE (however significant time commitment)

Teams can apply to the 12-week programme directly without going through the Hothouse

Complete the application form by Friday 14th September 2018

Further Information

Further information on Co-Founders can be found in our Autumn 2018 Programme booklet. Click here to read


You can also hear from one of the first Co-Founder Alumni teams on the following video, as they share their experience of our 2017 cohort. 


If you want to start a company or join a startup team and have the time, energy and enthusiasm to commit to this programme, we would like you to join us. This programme is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland. This is not a training and development programme – we are looking for the best talent to apply because you want to create the next great product, that could become the next great Northern Irish company.