What is X2 Labs?
A newly founded company, launching a wildly ambitious hyper-accelerator program. We are going to create 50+ companies in one year, across a number of growth industries in Norway. We are inviting participants, corporate partners and investors to join. Anyone can join. We would like to join. Today. First step, join an information session or apply for one of our programs.
What is the program?
4-weeks. Anyone can join. Join a team. Co-found a company. Build, scale and grow your company. Work with investors and mentors. Become a co-owner. All in 4 weeks. After week 4, this is your new job, your new passion and hopefully your next profitable adventure.
We want you to create your new dream job!
What do I get?
Fun, learning, network, crazy people, new growth opportunities and maybe a company - and a job.
What do I have to bring/do?
You need to commit to 4 weeks of your time, full-time or part-time. We prefer full-time. You have to bring your passion, energy, commitment and willingness to work. Work hard! We supply the program, the venue (in Stavanger, Norway), the food and drinks (mostly), the global facilitators, the company-building techniques, the early funding, the global runway to our international network. More importantly, we provide the hyper-tough love/facilitation to help you succeed. We open our networks to customers, partners, mentors and global experts. Need to talk to a robotics expert in London? No problem. Want to talk to a Prince in Dubai? Got it. Want a face-to- face meeting with a real asteroid miner or a strategist at Statoil? We got you covered. Want to pitch your product to a Smart City Director at Cisco. We’ll make it happen.
What am I expected to do?
First and foremost, you need to build a successful team. The team is 2/3 of your future success. Next, you are going to have to talk to customers and partners. A lot of customers, and a lot of partners. Our dear friend Rita McGrath calls it “discovery-driven growth”.
Our role-model Steve Blank calls it “Get the hell out of the building”. Our super-dude Elon Musk does it, when he “sells the car first, then tries to build it”. Our co-founder and surfer dude Christian Rangen calls it “first sell it, then build it”.
Next, you are expected to work together with your team to identify real, in-market problems (what we call market-opportunities). Once identified, you will build lean, ultra-fast startups attacking these problems and building/creating solutions.
We aim for rapid product-market- fit, quick MVP’s in market and a sprint to first cash flows. And yes, you will be pitching to friendly, supportive investors looking to fund the early growth phase for your company.
What does it cost?
It is free, 100% free to attend. If you are a participant, all we ask is that you invest 4 weeks of your time (part-time, full-time), your energy and your passion. Bringing your can-do attitude, your diverse skill-set and personal network is also helpful. But really, it’s free.
Who is behind this?
A team of passionate entrepreneurs. The Captain & co-founder is Sean Paul Shanor, American-Norwegian serial-entrepreneurs (mostly failed ones). Passionate accelerator activists and co-founders are Christian Rangen and Elisabeth Øvstebø. Our In-house Growth Hacker and co-founder Inger Hanne Vikshåland and finally our board members Eirik Gundegjerde (Lyse) and Kurt Sele (Oval).
But truly, we represent a network of global people driven to entrepreneurship and fast, accelerated business development.
Who will I meet?
You will meet – and work – with a diverse group of people. We are hoping to bring together a wonderful combination of different skillsets and backgrounds. We truly believe, “anyone can join”.
We hope to see former oil & gas engineers, marketers, administrative staff, former CEOs, current (i.e. full-time working) business developers, hackers, students, PhD-candidates, foreigners only recently having arrived in Norway, a few startup junkies, a handful of techies, a Star Wars fan, a few designers, a medical doctor, geologists, teachers…and possibly some friends or even one of your kids.
Can I bring my own ideas?
Yes, you can! At the same time we are very focused on finding problems. Finding and solving near-market problems. Your ideas are important to us – and they might be just perfect.
I have an idea…about fin.tech… do I have to wait all the time until July?
Well, each program we cover different themes. A problem/idea on autonomous ships can be covered in our programs on Smart Cities – Smart Everything, Ocean Space or even Global Issues. A problem/idea on clean energy can be covered in Smart Cities, Global Issues or even Non-Profits. A problem/idea on fin.tech could go in fin.tech or even Smart Cities – Smart Everything.
Do I get a salary?
We hope to see this grow into your dream job – with a competitive salary. On day 1, for the first 4 weeks, nobody gets a salary. Once your project (company) starts receiving funding, paying (minor) salaries might be an option.
Following week 4 and the second round of financing, the team should be able to balance a sound fiscal policy with actual salaries. Most probably, you and your company will want to focus on building customers, marketing, products and generating cash flow. That’s when it’s time to consider salaries.
Our goal is truly to see you and your team co-build this into a rapidly growing, sustainable business with investor capital through X2 Labs Fund and potential public (soft) money.
Equally important, however, is the fact that you will be a shareholder, co- founder and co-owner of your company. You, your team, X2 Labs and X2 Labs Fund will all share the ownership and build a company – together.
Will we get funding?
Yes! You and your team will pitch to real investors on day 5 and day 28. On the spot, you will get a yes/no and actual transfer of funds. On the spot! The actual sum of funding will depend on your needs, your pitch and your growth strategy.
Will I own parts of the company?
Yes, you will. All participants will be equal co-owners. Together, everyone will grow and build the company. Any exits, capital events or sale of the company will benefit everyone.
Can I join part-time?
Yes, you can. Jump in. You will probably want to quit your job and join full-time.
What if I already have a job?
Apply for a vacation, take a leave, skip work. This will be infinitely more fun.
What will I learn?
Tons. You will learn how to build and scale a company – in days rather than weeks or years. You will learn business model designs, lean startup, MVP’s, in-market testing, customer development, team work, investor presentations, pitches (but you will only pitch if you want to). You will learn – and love – how to build a real company.
What is the goal?
We have two perspectives on this. One, our mission is to help “transform a nation”. That’s our end-goal. Second, we want to co-create a portfolio of new companies with global growth ambitions and successful exits, creating win-win- win for everyone. That’s our goals. What are yours?
Why are you doing this?
Simple. We live in Stavanger – a region in transformation. We believe the greater region will face disruptive change in the coming decade. We want to be a part of the solution. The future. Pushing the region post-oil & gas. We believe Rogaland and the greater west coast region can be a global hub for innovation and entrepreneurship.
To quote Torger Reve, ”we are competing with Shanghai” – and that requires a different mindset, eco-system and innovative spirits than we have had for the past 30 years.
What is an accelerator program?
Thank you for asking. This is a good question. Accelerator programs are short, intense programs to help build companies – faster. They have been growing since 2007, with numerous programs coming up in the past 3 years. Most involve 3-4 months, mentorship and access to seed capital. Our program has everything, but hyper-growth in only 4 weeks.
Want to learn more:
Check out Wikipedia for “seed accelerator”.
I`m employed. Can I join?
Yes, just do it.
I`m on dagpenger. Can I join?
Yes! NAV wants to support us, but requests that you register the time you spend on this program. This will reduce the amount of dagpenger you recieve. We are working on getting an exception approved and hope this will be resolved soon.
I`m just 15 (or 70). Can I join?
Anyone can join, seriously. Age is just a number.
I`m a foreigner. Can I join?
Yes, please do. Our working language is English, and we love Google Translate.
I work in a company. How can we be a part of the team?
We would love to have you join from a “corporate”. We are passionate about connecting large and small, old and new companies to become unlikely partners. Bring your partners in crime, your project team, your new venture staff, your innovation team, your future business developers and your sales team. Anyone can join.
I want to join as a corporate partner.
Awesome. Contact Sean@x2labs.io
I want to invest.
Welcome. Contact Christian@x2labs.io
We are raising a fund of NOK 10 -20 million. Minimum invest is NOK 250.000,- Anyone can sign up to invest.
What happens after 4 weeks?
After week 4, we want to put you and your new company on our global runway. Dubai, San Francisco, Oslo or even Stavanger, we will guide, coach and mentor you in what to do next. But one thing is sure, you will be racing towards revenue and early customer traction (Satisfaction?). And you are scaling your company – fast.
What if we fail?
Statistically, most will not grow to be successful companies on the first try. So we try again, and again. If you and your team decide to stop, then try pivoting to a new idea, a new problem or a new customer segment. If all else fails, and you want to stop, at least you will walk away with tons of new knowledge – and better equipped for the next program.
What about X2 Innovation Center – the corporate accelerator?
Yes sir, that’s our sister company and we work fast to connect “corporates” and “startups”. X2 Innovation Center works with established companies to run in-house accelerator programs. We help design, plan and run 2-day, 5-day or 3-month programs to launch new growth ventures in new industries or new markets.
We have worked with solar energy, electric cars, digital health, ocean space and smart cities. We are actively inviting companies that want to find new growth, explore new business models and run internal programs to launch new business areas in days, not weeks or months. Learn more at