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Exploring the startup ecosystem



When we decided to create The Refiners, a program designed for foreign founders in Silicon Valley, we’ve never run a business like it before. Yes, combined, we have a lot of entrepreneurial experience, however, we’ve never run a program for entrepreneurs. Fortunately for us, we’ve collectively been in Silicon Valley for many years, so we decided to call the people we knew that had the insights we needed.


We first reached out to Marvin Liao, a partner at 500 startups, who accepted to meet with us right away. He was so eager to help, that we met for a beer on Mission street in 3 days. Knowing time is of the essence, we went straight to the point and told Marvin “we’re starting an accelerator and we have never done it, can you help?” After a couple of hours, Marvin was able to gift us information of its value equivalent to gold. We knew we were on the right track.


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