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Around the World in 111 Days: - Relay Foundation

Around the World in 111 Days:

90% Done? Wow…time flies.

Hello hello hello! We are now one quarter of the way through our World Tour and we cannot even begin to express the awe that we have experienced while traveling through countries like Singapore and Australia, through cities like Boulder and Kuala Lumpur, and observing how impact is done. In order to share our initial experiences as well as provide some extra context for the coming reporting, we have here the collection of our Key Handoffs for each city we have visited so far.

The Race:

April 17th serves as a momentous day, for on that day Relay sets off on a 31-country World Tour. This tour will take us to the top social innovation hubs on earth, adding cities like New Delhi and Tokyo to our strong base in San Francisco. We will add to our past learnings, increase access to the field for youth the world over, and bring back the best the world has to offer as we continue to grow our impact.

Why We’re Running:

Over the last few years Relay has had some great successes, not to mention some big learning points. We’ve worked with social tech, solar battery companies, sustainable clothing lines, and social finance alternatives. More than 40 ventures have run the Relay Way, and we’re just getting started. Relay isn’t the kind of group that settles for ‘good enough’ so, in order for us to not only stand by but exceed our mission of empowering young social entrepreneurs to make a living while making an impact, we are looking to source the world’s knowledge on the three following topics:


What is social entrepreneurship and why?

Does social entrepreneurship mean something different in China or Turkey? Or is there something that stands as the foundation of all for-profit social ventures? Answering this question ensures all the ventures Relay helps to grow will be far more deliberate in their actions and impactful in their outcomes.

How does the world structure incentives for early-stage social entrepreneurs throughout the validation process?

Social entrepreneurship isn’t easy. The topics we deal with can be tough, and that’s nothing in the face of the business realities of social enterprise. How are the best organizations structuring their mentoring and aid so as to lead to long-lasting, inspired social ventures?

How does the world structure financial deals for early-stage social ventures?

A bad deal early in a venture’s life can cripple it for good. How are impact investors, venture capitalists and angel investors in Greece, Japan, or Singapore organizing their involvement in such as way that grows the ventures they fund as opposed to destroying them?


Where We’re Running:

As you can see from the map up top, we’re going to quite a few places. We’re hitting cities all over the US, like Boulder, New York, and LA. Then we move east to Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, and all throughout the east-Asian countries. China will be huge, as we tour through Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. From there we move through India to East Africa, and then most of Europe. We have set cities in each of these countries and will update our social media and site in anticipation of arrivals.

In each city we have meetings, talks, and conferences with incubators, accelerators, startups, financiers, and government officials, everyone that could possible take a social venture to the next level (or stop it in its tracks). It’s in these meetings that we will find our answers, allies and, possibly, more questions! We’re talking about organizations like:

The Hub (San Francisco, CA)

Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (Washington, DC)

The Hatchery (NY, NY)

MIT’s D-Lab (Boston, MA)

Foundation.io (Boulder, CO)

JFDI (Asia)

Social Ventures Hong Kong (HK, HK)

Seedfund (Delhi, India)

Appfrica (Kampala, Uganda)

The Hub (Barcelona, Spain)

Founder Institute (Istanbul, Turkey)

HackFWD (Munich, Germany)

Run With Us:

Of course, we’re going to be keeping you all up to date as we travel. So stay tuned to our FacebookTwitter, and our site for our video blog, interview transcripts, and the latest social startup news from across the globe. The race starts April 17th!