What We Do
We accelerate Unreasonable entrepreneurs and their ventures.
We are solving the world’s biggest problems by arming the entrepreneurs who can take them on with the mentorship, capital, and network to make it happen.
Each year, we unite 25 entrepreneurs from every corner of the globe to live under the same roof for six weeks in Boulder, Colorado. These entrepreneurs receive training and build long-term relationships with 50 world-class mentors, ranging from the former Managing Director of Investments at Google.org, to the CTO of HP, to an entrepreneur who’s enabled over 19 million farmers to move out of poverty. In the process, they also form relationships and build their businesses with 20 investment funds, receive legal advice & design consulting, and pitch to hundreds of potential investors and partners. Check out this 3-minute trailer to get an inside peak and read on to learn how it works!
Attract:We’ve partnered with over 140 organizations around the world to identify and attract incredible entrepreneurs tackling the world’s social and environmental needs. Through a 3-stage application process, these early-stage entrepreneurs are chosen to become Unreasonable Fellows and attend the Unreasonable Institute.
Unite: Imagine if the likes of Richard Branson, Mother Theresa, Muhammad Yunus, Henry Ford, Albert Einstein, and Rosa Parks came together to develop solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. Now stop imagining. That’s what we do with 25 of the world’s most promising entrepreneurs at our 6-week Institute. Our secret sauce? Everyone, including visiting mentors and capital partners, lives under the same roof and helps build their ventures together.
Mentor: To guide the chosen Unreasonable Fellows, we bring in 50 seasoned entrepreneurs and proven practitioners as mentors, who live with the Unreasonable Fellows for between 3 days and two weeks. They work with Fellows to build companies that not only effectively address a social or environmental need, but do so in a way that is profitable and scalable to at least 1 million beneficiaries. These mentors include:
- Hunter Lovins, a Time Magazine Hero of the Planet and founder of Natural Capitalism
- Kamran Elahian, a Silicon Valley VC who’s exited 7 companies for between $40 and $700 million
- Tom Suddes, an entrepreneur who’s started 19 companies and fundraised over $1 billion
- Lisa Waits, the Director of Business Development at Nokia
- Bernard Amadei, the founder of Engineers Without Borders
See all of the mentors in our network here!
Finance: We’ve observed that investment flows through relationships, not pitches or business plans. Thus, we give Unreasonable Fellows the chance to build relationships with lead investment decision makers from our Capital Partners, 20 active impact investment funds and foundations. These lead investors live with the Unreasonable Fellows for between 3 days and 2 weeks during our Summer Institute in Boulder, providing our entrepreneurs the chance to learn how to make their companies more investable, secure capital, and begin conversations that will lead to later-stage investments. These Capital Partners include:
- Acumen Fund, tackling poverty via health, water, energy, housing, & agricultural investments
- First Light Ventures, making seed-stage investments in solutions for emerging markets
- E+Co, making clean energy investments in developing countries
- TONIIC, the largest network of angel investors in the impact space
- RSF Social Finance, investing in food & agriculture, education & the arts, and conservation
Additionally, at our Unreasonable Climax event, Unreasonable Fellows have the chance to pitch to an audience of over 400, gaining massive exposure. Our goal is to ensure 100 prospective funders are in the room.
Global Network: A worldwide community of of top mentors, world-class entrepreneurs (Unreasonable Alumni & Fellows), and premier consulting organizations and partners are integral to the long-term success of Unreasonable Fellows and their ventures. Arguably the most valuable asset of the Unreasonable Institute, our Fellows gain access to this private global network of support. The best part? It is constantly growing!
See for yourself: To get a glimpse of what a summer at the Unreasonable Institute is all about by watching the 2011 Unreasonable Fellows go from arrival to graduation on our 7-part web series on Unreasonable.tv! Start with Episode 1 here.
- Giving the World’s Most Unreasonable Entrepreneurs Wings -
Intensive training, effective collaboration, international exposure, and expert guidance from the world’s best ensure that the ventures we work with take flight.