Maybe you just have an idea you’ve been working on for a while. Perhaps you have a proof of concept. You may have even generated some revenue.


Punching-through to become a viable start-up is the hardest leap anyone ever makes in any business.

The greatest mistake many founding teams make is thinking they should be able to do this alone. This is understandable given the self-starting nature of entrepreneurs.

However, it not only makes life unnecessarily more difficult but, most importantly, it simply reduces the chances of the venture making it. Most that have, have had help. We believe its vitally important to support early stage start-ups – too many great ideas die, not on their merits but, due to ancillary issues which are perfectly surmountable with a little more experience and resource.

Start-Up

Scale-Up

learn more

Step-Up

learn more

We invest our skills, expertise, resources and capital as early as possible, so that we might help your venture the most, when it needs it most.


Our team is focused on growth challenges – we tackle them every day for numerous companies at all stages of commercial maturity and we work across all functional areas in doing so.

We understand what is needed to get a company off the ground and we have the wide-ranging commercial experience to support you. Whether its legal and finance formalities, founding team conflicts, gaining market traction, managing product builds, preparing for seed funding…You concentrate on making your product the best there is, and we’ll provide the support you need for everything else.

How we help

Successful applicants are first paired with one of our mentors who are a mix of entrepreneurs and subject-matter experts.


We match our mentors based on their expertise & interests, the founding team’s preferences, and the dynamic we observe between you in our mixer sessions at the start of the programme.  Your mentor will support you as your 1-2-1 sounding-board, coach and confidant throughout your time with The Lab.

Although we provide capital in some cases, our focus is always on providing practical advice complimented with the skills and resources needed to get you to the next stage of development. For some, that simply means getting the business into shape so that it is attractive to Seed funding. For others, it means helping them punch-through barriers to reach next phase of their development (commonly this entails achieving market traction, associated revenues and the work which underpins this).

We stress practical as, unlike most incubators where the emphasis is on networking and meetings, we understand that in the early stages of a start-up, it is really all about getting the right things done fast – most of which, the founding team shouldn’t be expending their energy on at a time when the product and customers should have their undivided attention.

Start-Up

Scale-Up

learn more

Step-Up

learn more

You will have a consultant team assigned to advise you on strategic and commercial considerations, as well as any ad hoc questions which arise.


Typically, the progression of conversations with the consultant team will cover the following topics; company structure and legal formalities, vision, product/market fit, market demand and size, product development, commercial modelling, go to market, sales, marketing, customer services, KPIs, performance/progress management, product changes & pivots, and next steps objectives/requirements. In addition, we have a range of support we assign as needed, which means we are able to assume the functional roles of Operations, Sales, Marketing , Customer Services, IT Support, HR, and all-round foot soldier on behalf of your venture. We’re all about getting things done, in partnership, with founders we believe in.

Our goal is to make you an attractive, viable concern. As we develop your venture, it may become clear that it will require significant funding to achieve its full potential. In these cases, we will put you on the right track to move into the next phase of your development by arranging appropriate engagement with a variety of early-stage investors and commercial partners.

How we work

To participate in The Lab, you must have a UK-based business.


If you are not based in the UK, we still welcome your application but, you must be willing and able to establish a UK business (we can help) and to operate as a one.

Unlike a lot of incubators, we don’t want to babysit you – there is no need to relocate and you can work from wherever you are most comfortable – COL has worked with remote teams around the world for over a decade and we do not consider geographical location a barrier in most cases.

We focus on B2B ventures. However, some are enterprise B2B solutions, whereas others are B2C with a B2B element. We also welcome applications from both tech-based start-ups and non-tech start-ups. However, whether tech or non-tech, we will expect the founding team to be personally capable of building at least an MVP product/solution themselves. COL provide all the support needed but, our policy is not work with founding teams that seek to outsource/delegate all of their product development.

Start-Up

Scale-Up

learn more

Step-Up

learn more

We very much want this to be a partnership.


Therefore, in return for our investment in you we only ask for the below – we do not ask to be on the board or seek any controlling rights – it is your company and you need to be free to run it.

We will allocate up to £100k of resources for up to 6 months to successful applicants. In return we ask for 5% equity (and/or 5% of Token Reserve) and rights to invest pro-rata in future financings.

Alternatively, for businesses that are further along in development, we may invest up to £100k for up to 6 months, in return for 15% equity (and/or 15% of in Token Reserve) and rights to invest pro-rata in future financings.

Sign up today

click here to sign up

Check out our start-up incubator

go to the lab