One of the more ubiquitous trends in the recent years has been the explosive growth of startup incubators and accelerators such as YCombinator which equip startup founders with the necessary business and mentorship skills for takeoff. The range of support services which entrepreneurs can get from startup incubators is quite varied and includes business communication skills, accounting, marketing, hiring, accessing venture capital, and many other resources which entrepreneurs can take advantage of to build highly viable businesses. Today’s startup incubators and accelerators are also web-based, and aspiring entrepreneurs do not have to attend training and mentorship sessions physically. You can find one in virtually every major city, and they also cater for various verticals.
For example, there are startup accelerators which emphasise financial solutions, technology, green and many other profitable verticals. This provides for a great degree differentiation, and if you plan to invest in a particular niche, it is possible to apply to a highly focused niche which has great relevance to your niche and also offers optimal support and resources to help you get your startup up and running.
Here are the top 10 startup incubators and accelerators which you may take advantage of to transform your idea into a successful product launch.
Startup Incubators And Accelerators for your Startup in USA
ycombinatorThis one of the oldest startup incubators and was founded in 2005. YCombinator is also by far the most popular incubator and has spawned hundreds of startups worth billions of dollars. It is no surprise therefore that thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs jostle for an opportunity to join the YCombinator program. Many investors also prefer the YCombinator companies. Some of the businesses which have emerged from YC include Dropbox, InDinero, and Airbnb.
TechStars is another key player in the startup accelerator industry and was founded in 2007. It also has a good hit ratio and places great emphasis on the smaller startups. Its model is based on mentoring a small number of entrepreneurs at a time so as to give each aspiring founder maximum attention. It also lends additional support to other startup incubators thus extending its impact in the startup scene.
DreamIt Ventures is a venture capital and startup accelerator company with presence in New York, Philadelphia, and Israel. The company has great specialization in startup incubation and seed funding and has spawned over 127 companies in various technological sectors which have passed through its Dream Cycle and accessed top seed investments.
The San Francisco-based startup accelerator was founded in 2010 by ex-Googler Thomas Korte and offers a mentorship program which places a great emphasis on web and mobile technology startups. The company helps founders in this niche to build better products and access seed funding for their startups. Angelpad has a very impressive portfolio of startups which have emerged from its program including the enterprise social networking portal which recently raised $5.5 million in seed funding.
LaunchPad LA, as the name suggests, is a Los Angeles based startup incubator which offers a very broad range of support services to entrepreneurs including a mentorship program, seed funding and a posh office space in LA near the Santa Monica Beach. The startup accelerator invests $100,000 in startups passing through its program and also offers the office space for free. The company is ranked fifth in America and has spawned over 20 successful startups.
Some 20 companies have so far graduated from the Excelerate Labs’ very intensive summer accelerator program. The program has a world-class team of entrepreneurs as mentors including Groupon founder Brad Keywell and OkCupid founder Sam Yagan. The Chicago-based incubator merged with Techstars earlier in the year.
KickLabs is an incubation hub which focuses on companies in the digital media niche. KickLabs focuses on the companies which are at the concept stage and are in the process of acquiring new customers to use the product. The San Francisco startup accelerator will provide a collaborative environment and position these startups in the storefronts to enable them to acquire new funding from angel investors. Since its launch 2010, KickLabs has assisted many small startups in closing deals with some of the big corporations.
500Located in Mountain View CA, the 500 Startups program helps companies in accessing early-stage seed funding and also puts entrepreneurs into one of the best startup incubation programs. It is also very unique in the sense that focuses on startups which are also based overseas. The 500 Startups has a highly powered 500 Team in its 500 Accelerator Program which ensures very hit ratio for the entrepreneurs who sign up on the program. The entrepreneurs can also access a very broad portfolio of seed funding options. The McClure founded startup accelerator gives entrepreneurs up to $250,000 in seed funding.
Based in Chicago, TechNexus is one of the oldest startup accelerators having been founded in 2007. The company offers a startup collaboration ecosystem and networking platform in Chicago with desks, lounges and meeting rooms where entrepreneurs can meet with angel investors for seed funding. The activities at the TechNexus revolve around the Clubhouse which hosts over 2500 peers each month at the TechNexus. Tech entrepreneurs in Chicago can take advantage of these services to network, co-work or meet business partners and business leaders in the Chicago area interested in pumping some money into the new startups.
Tech Wildcatters is a fairly new player in the startup incubation and acceleration scene. The company focuses on the technology-driven startup ideas and also utilizes the unique concept of micro-seed funding. The program selects hundreds of companies every year through a very rigorous selection process to go through its mentorship program. Tech Wildcatters offers a 12-week Bootcamp to the chosen companies which then go through its accelerator program and are in an excellent position to access seed funding. In spite of being a relatively new player in the industry, the company has been listed as a Top 10 Startup Incubator and Accelerator by Forbes Magazine.