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Basecamp Boston

Forging solid connections for business growth

An innovative programme for NI companies with plans for expansion in the US .

What is Basecamp Boston?

Basecamp Boston 2023 is the second iteration of a new programme developed by Catalyst, which has been designed to forge solid connections between Northern Ireland businesses and the US to accelerate growth.

The programme connects NI companies with established experts and experienced executives in the US market – providing the insights they need to scale their business.

Independent research commissioned by Catalyst identified a supportive network of mentors as critical to accelerating NI companies’ path to scale in the US.  By supporting scaling companies and connecting them with a range of business experts who can help with their specific needs, Basecamp Boston has the potential to generate real economic impact.

With the signing of the Boston and Belfast Sister Cities agreement, Boston is the ideal launchpad for Northern Irish businesses as it builds on our existing relationships and the strength of Entrepreneurship, Health & Life Sciences, and FinTech.

Applications for Basecamp Boston are now closed. 

What happened in 2022?


of companies stated they were introduced to useful business contacts and service providers that they will continue to develop relationships with


of companies stated they would participate in future iterations of Basecamp Boston if given the opportunity


companies went back to Boston to follow up on leads independently after the success of Basecamp Boston.



companies identified potential new board members

The Stats

  • We delivered
    • 5 Workshops & breakout sessions, designed specifically to address the challenges of the cohort. Topics included:
      • – Go-To-Market Strategies
      • – Healthcare reimbursement
      • – FDA approval
      • – Growth Strategies
      • – CleanTech policy and funding
      • – Provided connections with 43 US mentors
      • – 7 plenary sessions
      • – 13 Expert Speakers
      • – 130+ one-on-one in-person meetings


      We also provided site visits relevant to the cohort, including:

      • – Greentown Labs
      • – MIT Senseable City Lab
      • – CIC workspaces
      • – LabCentral
      • – Plus, a networking dinner for all participants


      From the Entrepreneur In Residence at Harvard Business School, to Advisors and Consultants from MIT, and a myriad of strategic growth experts operating in Life Science, GreenTech, and FinTech Cluster areas, Basecamp Boston provided unparalleled access to experts who were able to deliver on the specific needs of the cohort.

  • Testimonials

    “Basecamp was so successful for us we have been able to see immediate benefits on sales and business development, we’re already in the process of going back out to follow up with connections forged!”



    “The networking has been second to none throughout the programme. Even the dinner was useful and added value with some very challenging conversations. Things like challenging assumptions and thinking about how we approach our US journey, helping us to avoid costly mistakes.”



    “The ethos of ‘paying it forward’ really came across and summarises it so well, everyone has been so welcoming, open and helpful… It’s very difficult for companies like us to get meetings with the calibre of experts made available through Basecamp Boston, the whole process was amazing.”

    MOF Technologies

  • Participating Companies

    The programme launched with an open call encouraging applications from innovation-driven enterprises based in Northern Ireland who have a product ready to enter the US market, are eager to develop a go-to-market strategy and have budget to implement US expansion over the next two years.


    As part of the application criteria, the ideal candidates would be operating within cluster areas consistent with the DfE ’10x Economy’ vision, specifically:

    • – Life Sciences / MedTech / BioTech / Pharma
    • –  Cloud / AI / Big Data / FinTech / CyberTech / RegTech
    • – GreenTech / AgriTech / Advanced Manufacturing / Renewables


    Following the open call, our selection panel identified 18 NI companies to participate in Basecamp Boston.

Christine Boyle

CEO, Synergy

Hold These Dates!

Open Call: Tuesday 31st January – Tuesday 14th February

Successful applicants notified: Monday 20th February

Deadline for submitting signed Participation Agreement: Tuesday 28th February

Needs Analyses for Returning Companies: w/c 27 February

Needs Analyses for New Companies: Monday 6th – Friday 9th March

Basecamp Boston: Monday 26th – Friday 30th June

Criteria for 2023 Participating Companies

We want to help with your business development in North America and we are eager to support companies who have the ambition to scale to >£100M in 5 years.

This year we are not limiting applications to companies working within Life Science, FinTech, or GreenTech Cluster areas.

To be eligible to apply applicants should:

  • Have a product ready to enter the US market​
  • Be eager to develop a Go-to-Market strategy for the US​
  • Have a budget to implement US expansion over the next two years

The cohort will consist of new companies and returning companies in 2023.

The programme has limited space available, and places will be allocated based on the content of applications received. Companies will be shortlisted based on those who show the strongest growth potential.

Following the open call, successful applicants will be notified no later than 20th Feb.

Basecamp Boston – Provisional schedule of activities

Subject to change depending on outcomes from the Needs Analyses. The programme will be further developed to respond to the specific needs of the participating companies.

  • Monday 26th June


    Introduction to Boston ecosystem, networking, NI company pitches



    Short intro meetings/networking with mentors



    Networking Dinner

  • Tuesday 27th June


    Plenary session(s) on shared challenges (e.g. Setting up in the US, recruitment, service provision etc.)



    Mentor meetings




  • Wednesday 28th June


    Follow-up meetings organised by cohort/free time (e.g. option to catch up with emails/company responsibilities)



    Concurrent workshops on shared challenges




  • Thursday 29th June


    Service provider networking session/plenary on shared challenges



    Tours/site visits



    Return journey

Meet Your Project Manager

Tomas Bamford

Tomas Bamford

Project Manager

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