Ah, summer. Time for laying by the pool, sipping a margarita, and letting the day slip by…
Okay, maybe in someone else’s world. But we’re entrepreneurs! Summer isn’t about relaxation. It’s about coming down from the SXSW/spring break high and moving that business forward.
And, if you’re an early stage startup, one of the best places to do that is an accelerator. Pages of digital ink have been spilled on the pros and cons of accelerators, but like anything else in life, you’re the one who can maximize the experience. If your team walks into an accelerator thinking you’ve made the big leagues and it’s easy sailing from here, you’re probably screwed. Go in ready to learn and maximize every opportunity that comes your way, and an accelerator could be just the thing you need.
The question is, which one? There are a lot of things to think about when picking an accelerator:
- Where is the accelerator located? If it’s not in your home city, are you able to relocate for a few months?
- Is there seed money involved, and if so how much?
- How much equity does the accelerator take?
- How successful have previous cohorts been?
- Will the accelerator’s network be beneficial in reaching your company’s goals?
- The Brandery–Based in Cincinnati, the Brandery has a great track record. Here’s an inside look at what happens at the Brandery.
- Kaplan EdTech Accelerator--Powered by Techstars, this will be the second summer for the Kaplan EdTech Accelerator.
- Start Co–Memphis-based Start Co is hosting 3 accelerators this year. The Seed Hatchery will be in its 4th year, and this will be the 2nd year for the women-only Upstart. SparkGap is the newest addition, focusing on logistics technology in one of the largest shipping hubs in the world.
- Boom Startup–Based in Utah, Boom Startup boasts mentors from companies as diverse as Cisco and Skull Candy.
- NMotion–The Lincoln, Nebraska, accelerator focuses on tech companies disrupting industries like agriculture, healthcare, education, finance/insurance, and sports technology.
- Techstars Austin–Going into its second year, Techstars Austin already boasts some great companies like Atlas Wearables.
- Seed Sumo–Based in College Station, Seed Sumo does acceleration Aggie-style.
- Techstars Chicago–This will be Techstars first year in Chicago, but they’ve teamed up with Excelerate Labs which has graduated 30 companies since 2010.
- Disney Accelerator–The newly announced Disney Accelerator brings together Techstars and the Magical Kingdom to accelerate companies focused on new media and entertainment.
- Barclays London–Again, powered by Techstars (anyone seeing a pattern), the Barclays accelerator brings fintech companies to London for 15 weeks of acceleration.
See an accelerator you like? Click on the name and check them out.
In the meantime, did we miss anyone?