How Founders Intelligence Empowers Their Team & Drives Client Empathy with Scale Up! Strategy Simulation

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About Founders Intelligence

Founders Intelligence, part of Accenture, is an entrepreneurial-powered consulting firm that collaborates with major corporations. They specialize in growth strategy, new revenue lines, and venture building. By bridging the gap between startups and corporates, they help businesses embed and accelerate growth. Trusted by leading companies across 15 industries, Founders Intelligence brings unique insights and expertise to drive strategic bets, partnerships, and M&A. As part of the Accenture Strategy, they connect clients with over 170 unicorn founders and 300 VC funds, making them a powerful force in business transformation.



As a consultancy specializing in entrepreneurial growth, Founders Intelligence (FI) works closely with corporate clients to navigate the complexities of the startup landscape and identify opportunities for growth and innovation.

Working in this intersection of traditional consulting and startup advisory often involves collaboration with startups and understanding the dynamics of scaling ventures.

“We spend all day, every day, advising corporates on how to work with startups… Most of our team have been in startups previously, or were past entrepreneurs. While we’re now on the other side of the table, it’s important for us to have a good level of empathy about what the startup journey looks like, and a good internal understanding of it,” Sebastian de Lange Kofoed, manager at FI, explains.

Seeking to enhance team cohesion and deepen their understanding of startup dynamics, Sebastian and his team at FI partnered with Strategy Tools to bring the Scale Up! Masterclass to London, UK in February, 2024.


“We generally have a team with unreasonably high expectations for training so there aren’t many resources we find out there that are able to really immerse and upskill our team. We’ve found that with the Strategy Tools simulations.”

Sebastian de lange Kofoed

Manager at Founders Intelligence

Not Just Another Team Building Activity

The masterclass was led by Scott Newton, Nir Melamud, Christian Rangen, and Henrik Amstutz from Strategy Tools, each seasoned growth specialists with extensive experience in scaling and exiting companies.

During two immersive days, 11 teams from both Founders Intelligence and their  Accenture colleagues experienced the founder’s journey, steering their startups from idea to exit. They lived and breathed several topics key to entrepreneurial success; from selecting the right investors, cap table math, handling advisory relationships and board dynamics, devising long-term funding strategies, exploring exit routes, and beyond.

“The material was well thought-out. It covers all the right things that we were looking for. The facilitators also did an amazing job facilitating discussion, and they had a very good balance between letting us have the ownership to steer forward, or jumping in when needed to steer us in the right direction and upskilling us,” said Sebastian.

Participants faced real-world challenges encountered by startups, including investor acquisition hurdles, high-pressure decision-making scenarios, and cap table precision, mirroring current industry dynamics.

“It was a hands-on way of learning about scale-up fundraising. It was really eye-opening and interactive, which is something a lot of training isn’t,” said Toby Hackett, a strategy consultant at Accenture and one of the participants of the Scale Up! Masterclass.

The teams also prepared some very impressive presentations at record time, from stellar company pitches to IPO presentations to the board. Take a look at some cool ones that participants worked on here.

Condensing the entire founder’s journey into two days of simulation made for a fast-paced, intense, yet rewarding learning environment for the team at FI and Accenture.

“It was a quite a steep learning curve, especially if you didn’t have a background in the startup landscape – but by the end of it, I was really able to understand what that meant and how that actually comes into practice. It’s a really fun way to understand various parts of running a startup and to be completely engrossed in a new world,” revealed Nirmitee Mehta, another participant at the masterclass and a strategy consultant in private equity advisory, Accenture. 

“In two days, I gathered more knowledge way quicker than I would have done with any other training. It’s super fun as well. The diverse group of people at the simulation added to the learning and experience, interacting with new people and getting their perspectives have been really valuable.”

Toby Hackett

Strategy Consultant at Accenture

Day 1 Highlights

A key highlight of Scale Up! is seeing early teams morph from early ideas to first solid investor decks. Just like in real-life, teams work under time pressure, competitive pressure and team pressure to perform. The infamous Startup Pitch (Founder Task) on day one is a superb way for the best teams to shine.

At FI, every team (11, in total) stepped up and most blew us away with their pitches.
Considering they only had 25. Minutes to develop the full slide deck, from idea to PPT, and then step on stage to deliver, this is very impressive.

Check out some of their excellent day one pitch decks below:

Day 2 Highlights

The founder’s journey is long, arduous and shifting. So also the case for FI.

Moving into day two, we started working on later stage investors, understanding how investors think and how capital markets really work.

Sprinting into higher revenue, higher valuations and ever-more ambitious growth equity stories, the teams knew they were setting themselves up for big wins – or big fails. As the day turned to afternoon, the Board was getting impatient and decided that it was time to turn towards public markets.

All teams worked hard and fast t o develop a gameplan for going public at the London Stock Exchange (Europe’s exchange of choice, right?). In less than 40. Minutes, all teams read extensive legal documents, worked with a proven corporate finance boutique, flew through ChatGPT aid and shored up a solid board recommendation.

Check out some of the companies’ IPO pitches in the slideshow below:


The Scale Up! Masterclass was well-received by all who attended, with several participants happy to have invested two days of their time on this team-building initiative.

“We loved it! The top-level feedback is great from both a content standpoint and a delivery standpoint,” said Sebastian, the lead organizer.

Enhanced Team Cohesion and Empathy

The simulation served as a valuable team-building exercise, fostering deeper empathy and understanding among team members about the challenges faced by startup founders. By immersing themselves in the simulation, participants gained a heightened appreciation for the complexities of the startup journey, which can translate into more effective client engagements.

Practical Skill Development

The hands-on nature of the simulation provided participants with practical skills and insights crucial for their work with clients. Through activities such as cap table calculations, fundraising dynamics, and strategic decision-making, team members honed their abilities to navigate the intricacies of scaling ventures, equipping them to better advise corporate clients seeking to engage with startups.

Increased Motivation & Engagement

Participating in the masterclass energized and motivated team members, inspiring them to approach their work with renewed enthusiasm and creativity. The masterclass created a supportive team environment where team members felt empowered to take risks, experiment with new ideas, and learn from their mistakes. This atmosphere of trust and collaboration encourages innovation and problem-solving, enabling the team to tackle challenges more effectively and drive better outcomes for clients.

“The vibes and intensity. It’s been a while since we had anything like this.
Truly, honestly, unmistakably glorious.”

Scale Up! Masterclass at Founders Intelligence, London

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