Are you excellent at what you do?

We want people with business excellence.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve got a PhD from Oxford or learnt to code in your bedroom. We want people who can get things done and make brilliant things happen.

We believe in creating long-term sustainable impact through technology and high-performance teams. The question you need to ask yourself is:

“Are you ready to tackle a global problem and create a lasting real-world impact through building a thriving tech business?”

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Who we want

We want candidates who aren’t afraid to do things differently. You need to be prepared for one of the hardest challenges you’ll ever face, and ready to embark on a life-changing adventure.

We want candidates with the ambition, drive, vision, and commitment to solve problems and create a lasting, sustainable impact.

If you want the chance to see what you are made of, then this is it.

What you get

You’ll work alongside iconic global brands and strategic partners, you’ll have access to a range of different experts from our Entrepreneurs in Residence to our Investment Team who are on hand to guide and advise you, you’ll work in an elite, high-performing team, and you’ll form a start-up tech business that has the potential to be scaled globally.

What’s more you’ll receive a comprehensive financial support package while studying for a Masters to help equip you on your startup journey alongside working in state-of-the-art cutting edge surroundings.

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What are the entry requirements?

The academic entry requirements are a degree in a relevant subject, or equivalent experience in your field.

Those who are not native English speakers will need to meet our English Language requirements – see the Falmouth University website for details.

I'm an international student, can I still apply?

You’ll need a Student Route Visa and will need to submit additional documentation as part of your application. The following information will need to be included when you apply:

  • Passport or birth certificate
  • A copy of any existing visa if you already have permission to be in the UK
  • Degree certificate/s or proof of other Level 3 (A level equivalent or above) qualifications
  • English language test results (if you are not a native English language speaker)
  • CV

What support is available?

During your first year, you will be a student of Falmouth University with all of the support services and wrap-around that this provides.

You’ll have access to the dedicated studio delivery team, academics, entrepreneurs in residence, investment team and the external funding team. These people are also your gateway to the significant support available through the University – the professionals who regularly perform the kinds of tasks that you will be involved with; business planning, designing products, rigorously performing due diligence on business opportunities.

What kind of product might I be working on?

The programme aligns itself with Cornwall’s wider goals and areas of expertise; these being Digital Economy, Marine-tech, Agri-tech, Aerospace and E-Health/Wellbeing. This means that the opportunities are wide – not simply focussed on one area.

We have worked with industry partners ranging from Amazon Web Services across to Cornwall Food and Drink, out to Sony Entertainment, and even Pendennis Shipyard, an award-winning superyacht company. The NHS and charities partner with us in the health area, and Goonhilly Earth Station (among others) provides challenges in the aerospace arena. What is more, these industry partners present problems, not solutions; you are tasked to find the solution.

Do I get to choose who to work with?

Yes. You’ll get to know your cohort during induction week, where you’ll work in groups to collate ideas related to the Strategic Partner opportunities as well as taking part in a number of team building activities. From here you’ll be invited to form your team.

How does the equity split work?

Once you reach the end of the first year and your company is incorporated, the default equity split is 24.9% for Falmouth University, the remainder shared equally between team members. However, it is likely that, at your team’s discretion, your equity will be partly diluted by investors and incentive schemes for early employees.

Note that where visa requirements are pending on certain founders, companies may be incorporated with different equity holdings whilst such issues are resolved.

What is my time commitment?

Every student on the programme commits to a minimum of a 40-hour working week.

The programme is a complete 12-month programme – any holidays are in negotiation with your team, and need to be aware of the fact that you are building a startup company through the programme. The expectation is that you will take less than 25 days holiday through the programme, in line with UK private company norms. Holiday is highly discouraged during the first 3 months of the programme, to avoid hindering team formation.

What happens after the MSc?

After the first year when you’ve completed your MSc, you’ll incorporate and continue to grow your company, with Falmouth University as an active investor, and your cohort (and other tech companies in Cornwall) in your local network. You’ll be based in the Launchpad studio with access to our entrepreneurs in residence, the market test fund, investor readiness sessions and continuing professional development opportunities.

The terms of the programme require that the companies remain headquartered and incorporated in Cornwall for five years after incorporation. Although this doesn’t entirely preclude the directors living elsewhere, you and your investors will naturally want to ensure that such an arrangement will be in the best interests of your company.

If you are entering the UK to join Launchpad under a Student Route visa, then you’ll need to transition to a Start-Up visa towards the end of the first year, or at the start of year two. Continuing with the Launchpad programme will be dependent on securing this visa transition.

Do I have to move to Cornwall?

Yes. The programme is based in Cornwall, and is specifically aimed at building the Cornish tech sector. Whilst we make much use of online collaboration technology, the MSc requires full-time physical attendance. We believe that founding teams require significant amounts of face-to-face contact to build a trusting and high-performance culture.

We expect Launchpad company founders from outside the UK to make every effort to remain located with the company past the first year, but cannot guarantee immigration status to make that possible. Therefore securing a transition to a Startup visa may be necessary for those founders to continue with the programme, and the company.

Launchpad is Falmouth University’s venture studio. It is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), Research England and Cornwall Council.

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