Hello, we are Jan & Patrick, the founders of S4X.Group!
We are both studying technology management at the University of Stuttgart and have been working on our startup project for a couple of years.
The first concrete thought of a startup actually goes back to our time in the Bachelor. That was back in 2019. From then on, things went relatively quickly and we were soon able to present ourselves and our idea to the public. That was at an expo, where we received mostly enthusiastic feedback. Of course, it was cool to see how we could inspire other people and companies with our idea. You could say that we were not only hooked, but downright eager to move forward. We were really in high spirits! But as quickly as it started, it was suddenly over...
The right time
Jan started an apprenticeship as a pilot and Patrick started a semester abroad in Australia at the end of his bachelor studies. And even though we really wanted our project to go ahead, the whole thing turned out to be extremely difficult due to the time difference. It was a hard time and we couldn't make any real progress. Considering how fast our project had progressed at the beginning, this was a bit of a blow and the phase of concrete implementation turned out to be more difficult than initially thought.
From a project perspective, Corona was then a "stroke of luck". The flight school had to close and we both started our master's degree at the University of Stuttgart. Since then, our project has been going uphill again.
At the start of the first master's semester, we both attended the lecture series “Ringvorlesung Existenzgründung” at the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Innovation Research and were able to learn about all the opportunities in the "start-up" ecosystem in the region. At the same time, we participated in the Start-up BW ASAP program, which we were able to conclude by winning the Mobility Award. With the help of our start-up coaches and the continuing accelerator programs, like the "Gründermotor", we were able to directly generate initial contact points with our customer group.
Our time as residents
Currently, we can ideally combine studies and start-up as "Entrepreneurs in Residence”. For our time as residents, we want to exchange ideas even more closely with our potential customers. We are currently conducting a market analysis using qualitative and quantitative interviews. We want to validate our product ideas on the market in order to better understand the needs of our customers. We are currently being supported in this by the coaches at ENI. At the same time, we are taking the opportunity to use our market analysis in our studies as well; the program is therefore helping us in two ways.
It would have been cool if something like this had been offered earlier. But we think we received this offer at the right time. We hope that future entrepreneurs do also have such an opportunity, because we don't know if something similar exists at the university that allows linking the both pathways: entrepreneurship and studies.