Part 1: How to Use the soonami Ecosystem to Get $125K Funding for Your Web3 or AI Startup

November 7, 2023
soonami Team

Start your journey to raise capital through the soonami Venturethon beginning 27th November. Here is how. 

One of the most critical questions for early-stage founders is: “How do I get funding for my startup?” 

We are no strangers to this question. In fact, soonami was born to provide the answer. We want to give every founder a chance to prove their dedication and ability, regardless of location or academic background.

The soonami ecosystem is designed to give founders the support needed to start and scale their venture. We help founders put their teams together, achieve Product Market Fit, and get funding. 

Who can be a part of the soonami ecosystem?

At the core of a successful venture is a great team and a solid value proposition. And to find like-minded individuals to test your product in the initial days, you need support. 

A network or a strong community where you meet co-founders, advisors, or contributors can be an asset. A platform where you can generate a business plan, perfect your pitch, and get substantial feedback on your MVP could accelerate your journey from an idea to a funded startup is what we offer.

 The soonami platform gives you a chance to showcase your project, open vacant roles, and find your dream team. 

We are interested in you being part of our ecosystem if you are:

  • A founder with an idea: You want to start a venture, and you want to use a remote network to help you. You may already have a team, or you may be looking for people to fill roles in your venture.
  • Looking to be a co-founder: You are looking for a team or a venture to participate in and take on a central role.
  • An advisor: You are looking for interesting ventures and you are an idea person with lots of inputs for startups. You may also have your own idea to execute but don’t have the time to do it yourself. 
  • A freelancer: You have some spare time and you are interested in joining a new venture and working in exchange for receiving tokens. (A word of advice: Please only contribute to ventures where you see potential for real success).
  • A hacker: You have some free time and you want to help build the next big thing. Join one of our hackathons and show your ability to execute with a co-founder who may just be looking for you. If you have the skill and the time, you don’t need fancy degrees or labels to join our cohorts.
  • A hackathon organizer: On soonami, you can easily start your own remote hackathon and either extend your existing on-premise event or organize a remote event. We will communicate with our community about your hackathon. It can be a small private event or a big hackathon for a conference: you can use our platform for free.

How to use the soonami’s platform?

The best way to become a part of the soonami community is to join one of our hackathons - it can be organized by us or with our partners. 

soonami’s hackathons will take between seven days to four weeks. We want you to be able to show your ability to execute.  We want to see you execute your idea and show the potential of your team. Use the soonami Venturethon as an opportunity to turn your idea into an MVP and pitch in front of real investors.

How soonami Venturethons work

A venturethon is like a hackathon, but teams work with the intent to build ventures. At soonami venturethons, we organize pre-event sessions where founders get to learn from experienced entrepreneurs and industry experts. If you don’t have a team, you can join one of our speed networking sessions, where you present your idea and yourself in this ‘matchmaking’ event for startups. You could either join an existing team that needs someone with your skills or get a tea for your idea. 

If you have not already, sign up on Foundance to be notified of all future hackathons and networking events. If you have a project, you can share it on the platform. Foundance can also help you fill co-founder spots.

We take a few days to check all the submissions and inform all shortlisted teams to present at the final presentation day, usually two days after the final deadline. Your team will have to be present for the final jury decision to receive your award if you win. Here is a look at how our ecosystem works to make you succeed. 

What is in it for winners and participants? 

If you have participated in a soonami hackathon and have not won, our platform is still for you. For those teams, we offer the following:

  • Improve your MVP and submission documents
  • Complete your team to have the necessary capabilities to see first traction for your product
  • Get you a captable on Foundance
  • Sign the IP agreement
  • Use your tokens to help you get freelancers and contributors from Foundance to improve your project
  • Help look for great advisors for your project
  • Help build out your MVP
  • Get your website ready to present your project to the world.

We invest $125k at 9% OR $25k for 3%, 100k for 6% in two tranches. If an external investor wants to invest into a soonami venture, soonami gets an option to invest 3% alongside at most favored nation terms.

Investment Criteria

  • Innovative Technology: The startup's technology effectively addresses a tangible user or customer problem in the realms of Web3 and AI.
  • Team: A team comprises a minimum of two co-founders with complementary skills.
  • Market Potential: The market potential for the startup's solution is substantial, presenting an opportunity to build several unicorns in the space.
  • Competitive Edge: The startup possesses a competitive edge or unique selling proposition in its technology.
  • Adaptability: The startup demonstrates the ability to adapt to changes and advancements in the rapidly evolving Web3 and AI landscape.

If you do not receive a funding offer, we might give you another chance to present your project to the Investment Committee at another time. Every project will have a maximum of two chances to meet the Investment Committee.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can existing projects join soonami hackathons or only new ones?

Existing projects are eligible to participate in soonami’s hackathons. Still, we require that you be open about what has been produced before the hackathon and what will be produced during the event. You will be eligible for the bounty if you identify precisely what has been built during the hackathon.

Can incorporated projects join soonami hackathons?

Our core target group is early ventures. If you are already incorporated, then you are past the sweet spot of the soonami ecosystem. Nevertheless, you can join if you have not been funded yet.

Can already-funded projects join the hackathon?

No, our goal is to get you to your first funding. If your project has already received funding prior to the hackathon, you will not be eligible to participate. 

How can I increase my chances of getting funded?

There are a few key things to keep in mind:

  • Let high-profile advisors join your team
  • Build out your MVP
  • Produce a good product video
  • Have some testers test your product on Foundance

What is your business model?

If an external investor wants to invest into a soonami venture, soonami gets an option to invest 3% alongside at most favored nation terms.

What we need to know from you

To be able to get you the funding you need, we believe it is necessary to have information about you and your project. By showing your personal achievements and gathering project achievements, you also help us improve our platform. 

Here is a list of questions we typically ask:

Personal Achievements

Tell us about your personal achievements that qualify you to become an entrepreneur.

  • Have you started a venture before?
  • Have you received funding before?
  • How successful was your previous venture?
  • Have you joined a cohort of another accelerator before?
  • Do you have a completed university degree?
  • What was your highest achievement of your professional career in general?
  • Have you participated in other hackathons?
  • Have you participated in other hackathons on Foundance?
  • Did you win a previous hackathon? Please provide proof of the same.
  • Have you started your own hackathon with your network?

To be eligible for one of the Investment Committee meetings, you should stand out and show good traction for your project—these are the following achievements and actions you can take to improve your position in the ranking for IC meetings.

Project Achievements on our platform:

  • Start a venture on Foundance
  • Offer one or more job roles in your venture
  • Build a team
  • Upload a video for your venture
  • Write a business plan for your venture
  • Produce a pitch deck for your venture
  • Strike an agreement with your team on Foundance
  • Hire a freelancer to help you with design, MVP, or business development
  • Hire an advisor for your project
  • Get followers for your project
  • Get your MVP tested by testers on Foundance
  • Qualify for the shortlist of ventures to present in front of the jury
  • Issue an NFT series on mquark to get first funding

Platform bonuses:

  • Upload a profile picture of yourself
  • Upload a description of more than 200 words of yourself
  • Recommend soonami to a friend
  • Post your venture on social media
  • Post something in our forum.

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