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Launch Factory

What is Launch Factory?
We are a startup studio with a unique approach to launching companies.  We ideate and evaluate business opportunities, then recruit talented entrepreneurs to launch next-generation startups. After selecting the Founders and forming the new company, we place a $300k investment into the company and leverage our two-year incubation process to help it grow and succeed.
How does Launch Factory source business ideas and opportunities?
Launch Factory sources and develops potential business opportunities through a process of internal ideation and refinement. In the future we expect this to be augmented by collaboration with external entities such as technology transfer offices. After sourcing ideas, our rigorous due diligence process helps us select the most promising opportunities to pursue for our future companies.
Can I work with Launch Factory to incubate or accelerate my current startup or business concept?
Not at this time. Launch Factory focuses on finding founders for startups that we develop and create internally. We do not currently work with entrepreneurs pursuing their own startup ideas.
How long has Launch Factory been operating?

Launch Factory has been operating since January 2019. We launched a single company, OmniSync Incorporated, in 2019 and will launch two companies in 2020.

Founders Recruitment Process

What is the Founders Recruitment Process?

Simply put, the Founders Recruitment Process is how we find and select Founders for our startups.

If accepted into the process, Candidates will work with their partner over several weeks to produce a series of work samples that demonstrate their skills across multiple disciplines relevant to starting and leading a company. In the last phase of the process, the remaining teams will be flown to San Diego to pitch their proposal for the business. In the end, one pair of founders will be selected to launch each new startup company!

Please see our Process Details page for more information.

What does it mean to be a Candidate?

Candidates are participants in the recruitment process! Registering as a “Candidate” means that you are interested in becoming the Founder of a new startup company developed by Launch Factory and would like to participate in the recruitment process.

Do I need my own startup idea to participate?
No! As a Candidate, you will have the opportunity to choose between pre-vetted business ideas provided by Launch Factory. After registering, you and your partner will be able to select the business opportunity that best suits your interests and experience. You will then focus during the recruitment process on developing the foundation and strategy for this chosen business idea.
Are there multiple business opportunities available for Candidates to choose?

Yes! To learn more about the specific details for each opportunity visit our Opportunities page.

Do I need to find a partner?

Yes. Each Candidate will need to find a partner to participate in the Founders Recruitment Process.

Candidates will have time to find and select a partner after registering.  Your partner will ideally be someone you’ve worked with in the past, who has complementary skills to your own, and who is not a close friend or significant other.

However, if you’re unable to find a partner from your personal network we also provide candidates the means to find and contact other Candidates looking for partners.

Does Launch Factory retain the rights to completed work projects submitted during the Recruitment Process?
Yes. Launch Factory reserves the right to reuse, modify and adapt any work submitted by candidates during the Recruitment Process. Candidates should not share information they feel is proprietary to them during the recruitment process.
Why does Launch Factory recruit this way?

We believe the best way to identify promising founders is to observe their work directly. Starting a company isn’t as straightforward as simply starting a new job, so we want to make sure our founders have the skills needed to launch and lead a new company.

Our process gives us a chance to see partners working together to tackle real-world issues related to the business they’d like to lead. The process also gives Founders the time they need to formulate and develop their vision for the company so that, if they’re selected, they’ll be ready to hit the ground running.


How do I register for the Founders Recruitment Process?

In the coming months, we will release information about our upcoming Founders Recruitment Process. Join our newsletter to stay up to date and be notified.

Who can become a Candidate?

Anyone with a bachelor’s degree prior to the start of the process is eligible to be a Candidate in the Founders Recruitment Process.  Our prior Candidates have ranged from individuals with just a few years’ in the workplace to highly experienced individuals with decades in industry.

Successful candidates are able to demonstrate their understanding of the target business, vision for the future of the company, and effective strategy for the company. The highest achieving teams possess a diverse set of skills and experience in marketing, finance, and business development.

If I am working or in school full-time will I still be able to participate?

Yes! The launch Factory Recruitment Process is designed to be flexible for any schedule. Teams can choose a 48 hour window during the week to complete their work samples.  Weekly webinar update sessions are optional (but encouraged) and will take no more than one hour.

However, if you are still in school you must be on track to graduate and be able to start working full-time as a Founder within six weeks of the end of the recruitment process if you are selected.

Do I have to be located in San Diego to participate in the event?
No. Teams do not need to live in San Diego to take part in the process. Our recruitment process is designed to be accessible to Candidates across the country!
Does it cost money to enter?
No. The Launch Factory Recruitment Process is free to enter. All you need is a partner and the passion to start a new company.
How do I choose my partner?

After acceptance into the Founders Recruitment Process, Candidates will have time to find a partner and select a business opportunity to pursue. When ready, teams can submit a form on our site to confirm their partner and the opportunity they’d like to pursue. 

How do I select an opportunity to pursue?

After acceptance into the Founders Recruitment Process, Candidates will have time to find a partner and select a business opportunity to pursue. When ready, teams can submit a form on our site to confirm their partner and the opportunity they’d like to pursue. 

Why does Launch Factory require testing as part of the application process?
Our application includes a broad multifactor assessment to gauge certain characteristics of our Candidates. These tests help us identify the best candidates to accept into the recruitment process.

Candidate Experience

How long does the recruitment process last?
Our recruitment process is carried out over the course of eight weeks during the Spring. Each week, teams will be eliminated until one final team is selected to lead the new startup.
How many Candidate teams progress through each phase?
At the close of each week, the highest achieving teams will continue on to the next phase of the process, while a number will be eliminated. Roughly 10% to 30% of the teams will be eliminated each phase. Ultimately, two to three teams per company will progress to the final phase where the Founders will be selected!
What does each week (phase) consist of?

On Wednesday each week, an online update session will be hosted for all Candidates. During the webinar, aspects of the upcoming tasks will be discussed, with time for live Q&A. That evening, task instructions will become available for teams to access. When ready, teams can download the instructions for that week, starting a 48-hour window to produce that week’s work samples. All submissions are then due 48-hours after accessing the instructions and no later than Sunday night at 11:59 pm PST.

How much time will be required from candidates each week?
This process will push you and your teammate to deliver well-developed work samples in a short time frame. We have designed the weekly commitment to require 10 hours or less from each Candidate. This may vary from person to person, but we strongly encourage teams not to spend more than that amount of time each week.
What do the work samples consist of?

The work samples requested are designed to test Candidate’s ability to start and lead a new company. Starting a company requires a broad range of skills, so the work samples cover a wide range of topics including but not limited to marketing, research, finance, and strategy. These submissions give founders a chance to demonstrate their skills in a real-world context.

What if I have a schedule conflict one week?

We know eight weeks is a long time to work on a project and that teams may have preexisting obligations. Each team has one bye that can be used during the first five weeks of the process to skip submissions for that phase.

The bye must be submitted prior to the deadline for the week, instead of submitting your work sample. Work samples build on one another from one week to the next so this won’t really eliminate the need to do the work, but it will allow you to skip the submission and catch up later.

How do I attend the weekly update session?
Update Sessions are hosted live online each week. During the webinar, Candidates can ask questions and get detailed answers to specific information regarding the work samples for each phase. Attendance is not mandatory, however, we highly recommend at least one member of your team be present to ask questions.
Do Candidates have an opportunity to ask questions or talk about their work with Launch Factory's Founders?

Yes. In addition to the live Q&A session during update sessions, Launch Factory will also offer office hours each week.

Candidates can book time with Launch Factory’s Founders and employees to get feedback on work they submitted in a prior phase, ask questions about the work samples they’re currently preparing, or discuss any other topic they might like. Participation in office hours is highly encouraged and becomes mandatory in the last couple of phases.

How does Launch Factory judge work samples each phase?

Work samples are evaluated each week using individual rubrics developed for each week’s deliverables.

Submitted work samples are divided among our judges and evaluated to ensure no bias or imbalance is present. After ranking each team, we reevaluate all the submissions near the border of elimination to again ensure a fair judging process. These final results are averaged with the first to determine which teams will proceed to the next phase.

Are the rankings of each team released?
No, team rankings and scores will not be released to Candidates. However, we’re happy to discuss teams’ work during office hours each week and can communicate generally about your performance relative to other teams during that time.
Does Launch Factory perform any reference or background checks on potential founders?

Yes. Candidates are asked to produce a letter of recommendation from a reference we can contact in Week Five. In Week Six we will also perform a standard background check on all remaining candidates.

Selected Founders

How are Founders selected?
The performance of each team is evaluated throughout the recruitment process, with only a portion of teams progressing each phase. In the last phase of the process, three teams per business opportunity will be flown to San Diego to present their complete business plan and pitch their proposal for the business. In the end, one final team per opportunity will be selected to become the Founders of the new company. For related information, please visit our Process Details page.
What is required from Founders after they are selected?

There are five main requirements for Selected Founders:
     1) Founders must relocate to sunny San Diego
     2) Founders must begin full time ~6 weeks after selection
     3) Founders must sign necessary company formation documents
     4) Founders must sign a PIIA with their new company
     5) Founders must disclose any conflicts of interest

What happens after Founders are selected?

After being selected, teams will begin their transition to full-time Founders. In the weeks following the process, the selected Founders will relocate to sunny San Diego (if not already located here) and begin working full time on their new startup. Founders may be eligible for a small relocation stipend through the $300k investment provided to the new company. Founders, and eventually their employees, will work in the provided office space at Launch Factory HQ.

Where do Founders work?
Each new company is given office space at Launch Factory HQ to support them as they grow their team.
What do Selected Founders receive?

The selected Founders receive roughly two-thirds equity stake in the new company, after vesting. Launch Factory will invest $300K into the new company and will incubate the company; which includes office space, for up to two years. Founders are permitted to use up to two thirds of the $300K salary for their own salaries, distributed evenly over two years.

Can Founders take a salary?

Founders are permitted to use up to two thirds of the $300K investment for salaries, distributed evenly over two years.

Most entrepreneurs do not receive any salary during their initial years, which prevents many individuals from pursuing startups. This modest salary is meant to provide support for founders in the early days as they grow their business and is not meant to be comfortable. Founders will be able to adjust their salaries once they secure their next round of funding (9-24 months).

How long will my company stay in incubation?
The duration of incubation will vary from company to company, but generally it’s expected to last 12-24 months. Our goal is to provide processes and support that help you launch the business, secure funding, and become profitable.


How does Launch Factory place the $300k investment into the new company?

The investment will be made through a convertible note with a cap in line with market norms.

How is Equity split between the Founders and Launch Factory?
Founders equity in the new company is split three ways between each of the two founders and Launch Factory. The equity for the two Founders will vest over an initial time period in line with market norms.
What can the $300k investment be used for?
The Founders have full discretion on how to deploy the $300k investment. The only restriction is that Founder’s salaries are capped at $200k total, distributed equally over two years.
How long is the $300k investment meant to last?
The $300k must last the company until it’s next fundraising round, which will often not occur until after your initial product or service launch. In general, Founders should expect that the $300k funding will need to cover 9 – 24 months of operations.
Are there pre-determined expenses that must be taken from the $300k?
Yes. Incorporation expenses, relocation expenses (if needed) for Founders, initial computer equipment for the Founders, and other small expenses will all be taken from the $300k. Some of these costs may be spent during the Founders’ transition period, so we disclose these up front to avoid any confusion. Collectively these expenses should be less than $15k.

Looking to become a Founder?

Join us for our next Founders Recruitment Process. Sign up for our monthly newsletter to stay up to date and be notified.