Welcome to a place for founders by founders. No, really. An early mistake taught us a golden lesson about this.
Our mission remains to startup, scale, and sustain transcendent ventures, and do it again and again in partnership with founders.
Everything we do centers on founders – from our investment focus and unprecedented venture capital process, to the core values we nurture and bring to greater fruition in every one of our founders.
However. We quickly learned that to ignite founders, we must ignite the people and communities surrounding them – the very cities they live in. Igniting founders has driven us to ignite no less than a movement.
Ignite Founders Circle is now, more simply yet more powerfully, Ignite Circles. Our next and biggest gathering of 2018 is Ignite Paraiso.
Most recently, we just completed Ignite Circle X, Ignite xChange IV, and Ignite Retreat II – all exemplars of our ongoing (serialized, hence the roman numerals) and all-out efforts to innovate how innovation is seen, done, understood and propagated.
In 2017, Ignite Circle V was one of the first ever events in the Areté, Ateneo’s iconic new Innovation + Creativity Hub. In 2018, we have 30+ iconic experiences that turn the heart of innovation and venture capital into living, breathing Participative Performance Art.
We’ve grown so focused (obsessed!) with founders that we built an entire tech and transmedia platform just for founders and the people they’re founding stuff with. That still was not enough, so we’ve expanded the Ignite ecosystem to include the country’s richest corporations and the families that own them. PH innovation cannot ignore the reality that 80% of the country’s wealth and resources are owned by less than 100 families. Thus, we established Ignite Delta + Partners to innovate in deep and authentic partnership with the Philippines’ richest families and corporations.
The insight: the best way we’ve found to support founders is to support them hand in hand with the folks around them whom they’re recruiting into their teams, and more expansively, their broader ecosystem of partners and collaborators.
So when we invest, we don’t just inject financial capital: we bring to bear the force of our movement and community as human, social, network and mission capital.
We do all that and more via ignitegifts.com, where our mantra is:
Do what you were born to do in the company of others who are doing what they were born to do.
We’re very clear about this: to build and invest in transcendent ventures, first and foremost we build up and invest in founders.
We do this through a series of progressive year-round programs designed to enable founders and co. to discover, pursue, and transcend their greatest potential. In so doing, transcendent founders build breakthrough solutions to society’s wicked problems, while scaling sustainable business models and delivering outsize investment returns.
When these transcendent ventures breach billion dollar valuations, we call them Holy Unicorns. Our vision, by 2025, is to be the global #1 in starting up, scaling, and sustaining the world’s Holy Unicorns.
Monthly to bi-monthly Ignite Circles to bring each metro’s most brilliant problem-solvers into our community. We’ve also added monthly Retreats and Firesides to help Igniters deepen their road to transcendence.
Bi-monthly Ignite Exchanges in the form of Corporate Innovation Labs and Venture Labs – thematic problem-solving sessions involving a diversity of curated innovators.
Qualified Founders Circlers and Exchangers go onto Founders Lab and receive funding and other resources to prove product-market fit, user traction, scalable economics and other key milestones.
By 2020, 20 ventures funded via Founders Leap that have the potential to scale as transcendent ventures.
Combined annual revenues of ventures funded via Founders Lab &/or Leap top US$1 Billion by 2025.
By 2025, we should have built the first Filipino Unicorn – the first billion-dollar Filipino startup – to breakthrough with a solution that impacts humanity and matters on a global scale.
There are entrepreneurs, then there are founders.
Founders are seekers and keepers of transcendence. No matter how strategy, business model or vision might iterate, evolve or pivot, founders always go back to that deep well of mission:
It is a question founders ask twice: first, of ourselves as individuals; then, of the ventures we build.
Paradoxically, it is by going beyond our self-interest, beyond fame and fortune, beyond fear and doubt – that we are able to transcend our limits and change the world.
We build and invest in ventures that advance humanity’s capacity for transcendence at the individual, organizational and/or societal level; and do so at sustainable profit and scale.
By transcendence, we mean the fulfillment of one’s greatest potential:
For individuals – the fulfillment of their life’s mission, where their greatest talent and passion meet the world’s deepest need.
For organizations – the fulfillment of their mission, vision, values, strategies and key competencies, which are lived through their employees for the greater benefit of society.
For nations and global society – the fulfillment of the ideals of justice, peace, sustainability and equal dignity and opportunity for all.
We build and invest in sectors that directly touch and impact a human being’s capacity for greatness and transcendence:
- Education + Youth;
- Health + Lifestyle;
- Livelihood + Careers;
- Media + Technology.
Ultimately, it is not the sector, but the founder’s commitment to mission, purpose and values that drives transcendent ventures.
In this work for, with, and by founders, we rely fundamentally on the values of two great founders who have guided us so vitally in our own course: St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus (aka the Jesuits) and St. Josemaria Escriva de Balaguer, founder of Opus Dei.
To be clear, we are non-sectarian. We neither require religious belief, nor do we impose religion. We embrace founders from all walks who are committed to our universal mission of transcendence, which itself transcends religion.
At the same time, it would be impossible for us to exclude the founders Ignatius and Josemaria, whose example of love and service so centrally shape our desire to love and serve; and indeed, whose example inspires this entire mission to Ignite Founders.
AMDG: DISCERNMENT + MAGIS
In Ignatius, we rely fundamentally on the values of Discernment and Magis. To help founders discern – that is, find God’s (or the universe, if you prefer) purpose and design in everything we do. And thus, to do everything with Magis, “more, always more”, which is the spirit of relentless excellence in the service of others that defines everything we do. In sum, we refer to all this as AMDG – Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam, to give everything in all for the greater glory of God.
WHOLENESS OF WORK
In Josemaria, we rely fundamentally on the value of Apostolic Work. To help founders embrace the extraordinary value of work in sanctifying the world – by surrounding them with circles of trust and friendship, to help founders build ventures driven, not by fame and fortune, but first and foremost by service and mission, a burning love and boundless generosity that find special cause in helping people find and then spread wholeness through work.
This is about as extensive as “About Us” gets. We share our mission, vision and values right here in Transcend; our ongoing work in Ventures and Founders; and our day to day adventures of mind, body and spirit in Discern, where we also tell the story of how we got on this journey.
It is a story that unfolds everyday. We hope you will be co-authors with us. Let’s build transcendent ventures rooted in living transcendent lives.
Andre Yap, Ignite Founders Ventures