Online lecture by foreign mentor Marko Koski on “How to cooperate with corporations”

On May 9, 2024, an online lecture for startups of the acceleration programs Science Intensive Innovation and Development and Renovation was held by a foreign mentor Marko Koski. The topic of the lecture was “How to cooperate with corporations”.

About Marko Koski:

  • CEO, top management and member of the board of directors
  • member of the FiBAN network since 2013, regional angel
  • has extensive experience in investments and entrepreneurship
  • made seven investments in startups, two in funds
  • first investment in a startup in 1998, founded the first startup in 2011

The acceleration programs Science Intensive Innovation and Development and Renovation are implemented by Vacuum Deep Tech Acceleration with the support of the USAID Competitive Economy Program in Ukraine, the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, the Ministry of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, and the Ministry of Economy of Ukraine in cooperation with the Kyiv Academic University, Ukrainian Startup Fund, and YEP Accelerator.

Key insights from Marko Koski’s online lecture on “How to cooperate with corporations”:

  • Defining personal goals: Understanding whether you are aiming for a large company, autonomy, lifestyle, or a vision for something bigger is key when starting a business.
  • Time and effort: Building a successful company takes a lot of time and effort. Sometimes, after reaching a certain scale, it may be necessary to bring in another person to run the company.
  • Raising external capital: It should be clearly understood that this involves losing some control and coordinating actions with new investors.
  • Strategic freedom: Think bigger and give your actions strategic freedom to achieve meaningful results.
  • Team: A key factor in successful companies is a strong team that has a common chemistry and is able to cope with challenges.
  • Finding a common mission and goals: It is important to have people on board who share your mission and vision. This creates mutual understanding and provides a favorable environment for business development.
  • Partnering with business angels: Chemistry and rapport with investors or business angels can be critical to a startup’s success. Not only are they interested in investing money, but they also want to work with those they feel are their own.
  • The long-term nature of startup development: Successful startups usually take time to grow and peak. This requires commitment and patience from the founders and the team.
  • Approaches to cooperation with corporations: Startups should understand the needs and challenges of large corporations, offering them effective solutions and services that meet their needs.
  • The role of the regulatory environment: Taking into account the regulatory requirements in the industry helps startups adapt to the legislation and ensure their competitiveness.
  • Importance of own policy in energy and other industries: Developing a clear strategy for energy supply and other key aspects of operations is essential for a company’s success. Regulation in these areas creates serious requirements that must be taken into account.
  • Financing and team building: Obtaining funding, especially in the early stages of development, allows you to build a team capable of implementing ideas and finding the right people to work with. This becomes the basis for further success.
  • Investor confidence in the ability to implement: It is important to have not only a strong brand, but also to prove your ability to effectively solve problems and find solutions. This makes a startup attractive to investors.
  • The importance of interpersonal relationships: Despite conflicts, it is important to maintain positive relationships with partners and investors. Reputation and mutual understanding can greatly affect the success of cooperation.
  • Understanding market conditions and responding to changes: Understanding and adapting to the needs of large corporations allows startups to create solutions that meet market needs and ensure their competitiveness.


6 mistakes to avoid when presenting to investors:

  1. Incomplete team slide: Talk about domain expertise and team chemistry.
  2. Misunderstanding your goal: The purpose of the meeting is to get investors interested and arrange a follow-up meeting.
  3. Not ready for difficult questions: Prepare for questions from skeptical investors.
  4. Top-down approach to market assessment: Perform a detailed bottom-up market analysis.
  5. Undermining the competition: Recognize the existence of competitors and analyze them.
  6. Failure to appeal to emotions: Evoke an emotional response from investors.

An example of a good pitch deck: