keep your day job (for the moment).
build a team.
launch a prototype.

Founder Labs is the place to meet your founding team and build your new mobile startup.

Founder Labs isn't an incubator, it isn't a program, it's something unique. It's an experience. It's an opportunity. It's a select group of people with one common mission, launch a new mobile venture. Not everyone succeeds but everyone gets an equal shot to try. Founder Labs is a 5 week opportunity focused on the first phase of launching a mobile startup.

Over the course of five weeks, you’ll go through the important first phases of launching a company from building the right team to validating your concept.

Here, you will meet the UX designers, developers, hackers and product geniuses needed to form your founding team. Through weekly talks and access to mentors, you will learn the technical and lean startup skills needed to validate your business ideas, figure out the right product-market fit, build rapid prototypes and test with real customers.

What does a typical Founder Labs class look like? Some stats:

  • Average class size of 15-20 (four to five teams)
  • 10 engineers/developers
  • 5 designers
  • 5 business/marketing mavens

Our secret sauce? Building diverse founding teams. It’s true -- teams from varied backgrounds are more successful, last longer and are more innovative. Diversity is strength.

mobile focus

Founder Labs is focused on the launch of new startup ideas in the mobile space. Beyond just a mobile gaming app we want you to think broadly of sustainable business opportunities. These might include: enterprise apps, consumer apps, cloud services, mobile security, mobile enablers (eg. authentication, payment, middleware), mobile analytics, devices, smart grid solutions. To date, Founder Labs companies have been consumer focused, however we encourage teams to explore all areas of the mobile startup space. As needed, we will bring Mentors to match what you may be working on.

our philosophy

We believe mobile is the future. As well, we believe diverse founding teams have proven to be more innovative, more profitable and more capital efficient and are thus uniquely posed to change the world with fresh business ideas and innovative business models. Founder Labs is the place to build these new founding teams and ignite new, world-changing, mobile startups.

meet some of our companies


Smarketplaces enables publishers and blogs to build focused, community-driven marketplaces around topics or themes (like an embeddable eBay or Etsy)


Founder Raissa relocated from NYC (via Paris and Abidjan) to attend Founder Labs. At Founder Labs, she met her co-founder Van, and released an alpha product. Within three months of completing Founder Labs, she secured angel funding from accelerator fund 500Startups.

cake health

After completing the Founder Institute, Rebecca came to Founder Labs to build a basic prototype for her business idea. She now has a cofounder on board and is working out of Founders Den in SF. Cake Health is continuously under product development and they are expanding their founding team. Participate in their newly launched alpha and help shape their product as they grow by using this VIP access link

house of mikko

Founder Kimberly came to Founder Labs with just a business idea and has walked away with customer validation and a minimum viable product. After winning the audiences’ and investors’ “favorite startup” award on Founder Labs Demo night, she went on to build her product and grow her thriving community.


Founders Madhavi and Mike worked on separate teams during the five weeks at Founder Labs; after the program was over they both recognized a passion for music. They have recently teamed up, re-lived the startup lessons from the program and launched Beatlist, a wifi jukebox now in alpha and playing music at The Summit in SF. Check them out and share feedback as they continue to test out their idea.


Founders Everett (SF) and Sheetal (Portland) made the critical customer pivot 10 days before winning the Audience Award on Founder Labs' Final Demo Night for Tetherpad. They are currently building their minimum viable product and rounding out their founding team.


Beatriz came to Founder Labs from Barcelona with a business idea in the online travel industry. After completing Founder Labs, her idea pivoted from online travel guide to tripku, thanks to the initial tripku team and the customer development methodology. Now, she is developing tripku from Barcelona and rounding out her founding team locally. tripku will launch their alpha in the coming months.


Authy is a user-side solution for simple and easy two-factor authentication. We transform your smartphone into your identity.

meet our team

operating team

Shaherose Charania, CEO, Founder
Baat Enosh, VP Operations
Resmi Arjunanpillai, VP Marketing


Brad Feld (Partner, Foundry Group)
David Cohen (Founder, Techstars)
Jenny Fielding (Founder, Switch Mobile)
Mike Rowehl (Co-Founder, Mobile Mondays, Co-Founder Churn Labs)

+ a community of unforgettable people who kickstarted Founder Labs: Shea DiDonna and Jon Callaghan (True Ventures), Dave McClure (500 Startups), Steve Blank, Eric Ries, Ann Muira Ko (Floodgate Fund), Hiten Shah (Kiss Metrics), Resmi Arjunanpillai (, Angie Chang (Women 2.0), Sharon Vosmek (ASTIA), Tal Flanchraych (Women 2.0), Shuchi Rana (Women 2.0/Trivium), Jessica Shu (Women 2.0/Affinity China), Cheryl Cheng and John Malloy (Blue Run Ventures), Jonathan Greechan and Adeo Ressi (Founder Institute), Ashwin Navin and Paul Bragiel (Ventures i/o), Lesa Mitchell (Kauffman Foundation)...the list goes on.