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Get to know the 6 types of Startups and understand their position in the market

jean pierre fumey



the 6 types of startups

Every day, the demand for entrepreneurs to know the market and customize their business increases. After all, having a good idea is no longer enough. You need to establish a vision for the company and execute it to the best of your ability.

But maybe you’re missing an important step to get to know your company better: the types of startups.

If your startup network is new, or even has time to market, but it is competing with other giants.

You think you need to innovate, do what you love; or do you idealize something totally different, with a more social purpose? Would you be able to distinguish which type of startup yours fits into?

We’ve separated for you the six main startup types, their definitions and practical examples of each one. Read until the end to get ready and tell us, finally, what’s yours!

Before going any further, see if you really know what a startup is in this video from Elaborating Projects:

The 6 types of startups

1- Small Business Startup

A Small Business Startup is that small, start-up and often familiar company.

Its owner does not want to enhance it, he just wants to provide a comfortable life for his family and bring him closer to friends.

Technology is important to your business, and being small doesn’t mean it stops moving the local economy.

On the contrary, they can generate jobs, create and manage websites, social networking pages and grow. The difference is that their capital usually comes from their own economies, without much intention to expand.

It can be a virtual store, a small business, a travel agent or a hairdresser. According to the study “Radiography of the Brazilian Startups Ecosystem”, published in 2017 by ABStartups and Accenture, 63.5% of the surveyed startup teams were composed of one to five members.

2- Scalable Startup

In translation, a Scalable Startup would be like a scalable company. Do you know Facebook, Skype or even Google?

These are startups that make a living from venture capital and entrepreneurs who don’t just want to work to support themselves, but rather arouse the interest of large investors. The vision is of a millionaire return.

The potential to grow and be a giant is the main feature. All they need is investment to expand, and that expansion is usually fast.

Employees are always the best, quality is paramount, and the strategy of generating revenue and keeping costs low also exists. Uber and Airbnb are other recent examples.

3- Large Company Startup

Of course, among the types of startups, there is also one that includes large companies with time to market.

The Large Company Startup has innovation as its main objective. It’s not just about improving yourself, but creating truly disruptive innovations, making your business model superior or unique.

Companies that fit into this category start with revolutionary products, quickly become known, but for that reason they need to keep up with changes to sustain themselves.

As they are self-sufficient, they adapt and grow along with new demands, trends and transformations. An example would be Apple, which, since its first computer launched in 1976, has not stopped innovating.

It not only followed numerous technological changes, but was also responsible for creating them.

4- Lifestyle Startup

Lifestyle Startup owners certainly love what they do and are motivated daily with their business. This type of startup is driven by dreams and its success usually comes from that creator’s lifestyle.

It reinforces talents and passions and aims for more than money, but achievements.

Want an example? Mathew Jones, a former Australian surfer, became a full-time surf teacher.

Before long, he turned his passion for the sport into numerous useful apps for surfing, such as “ iSurfer ”.

His success made other surfers join him to create new apps. All members of a Lifestyle Startup are essential for the business, because they share the same purposes and vocations.

5- Buyable Startup

Buyable Startup is launched from the execution of a successful idea, but which needs investment to structure and grow.

In reality, they are born to be sold to larger companies in the same niche, such as startups that create mobile apps.

Internet giants such as Google and Facebook are examples of companies that buy technological solutions from this type of startup. The investments of these investors are generally high risk, but they are what make the difference for the execution of a Buyable Startup project.

6- Social Startup

The last of the startup types, but with huge importance for many entrepreneurs, is Social Startup. It is created by “socially ambitious” people who want to make a difference in the world in some way.

The founders do not intend to be rich – wealth here is the benefit to communities, workers or regions where they are present.

A Social Startup may or may not be for-profit or unite the two models, but always aiming at the social and human side.

What matters is to contribute positively to society. Examples include charities or charities, whether it’s fighting poverty for clean water projects or raising awareness about some other issue.

Golden tip

Now that you know the 6 types of startups and their main goals, you can rate yours!

If you’re just starting out, the golden tip would be to better understand each model and, if possible, gather the best of each one. Want examples?

You can focus on a small business, but try to balance the personal with the professional, so you don’t get overwhelmed. Or start with your passions, but always with the ambition to grow.

So, what kind of startup is your favorite?

Setting is an ideal consulting firm for organizations keen to improve themselves, such as startups.

With a systemic view and customer focus, it is fully prepared to help your business prosper.


Jean-Pierre is a polyglot communication specialist, freelance journalist, and writer for with over two decades of experience in media and public relations. He creates engaging content, manages communication campaigns, and attends conferences to stay up-to-date with the latest trends. He brings his wealth of experience and expertise to provide insightful analysis and engaging content for's audience.

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