Building a startup from the ground up is hard work. However, with the kind of assistance available to startups today, creating a new business is not as difficult as it used to be. Accelerators, for instance, help startups to get off the ground by providing valuable guidance and access to resources in lieu of equity. Entrepreneurs sign up for a program that typically lasts three to six months. With startup culture blossoming in Texas, there are many accelerator options available to entrepreneurs. Here are the best of them.
Founded in 2009 in Dallas, Texas, Tech Wildcatters has been featured as one of the first accelerators in the world both by Forbes and Inc. They follow a unique model called The Gauntlet. According to them, this is a first and one-of-a-kind accelerator model. According to their website, it is a “5-tier system infused with data, milestones and most importantly, ambition”. Given the popularity of Tech Wildcatters, getting into their accelerator program is understandably competitive, but has its rewards. At the end of its 3-month program, select companies get the best of mentors and $130,000 in funding. They also get to present their ideas to investors on the last day of the program, dubbed as the “Pitch Day”.
Based out of Austin, Texas, Capital Factory is an accelerator that offers more than just advice and mentorship to early stage startups. They offer entrepreneurs 81,000 sq. feet of shared working space and access to more than 150 mentors. The accelerator has held more than 900 events focused on technology. These events serve as platforms for the accelerator to introduce its entrepreneurs to local investors. In addition, there are regular competitions where the startup owners get to pitch their ideas to investors for funding.
TMCx, aka the Texas Medical Center Accelerator, is situated in Houston, Texas. If you are an early-stage health or medical startup, then this accelerator is where you should be. As you can imagine, if you get selected into the accelerator program, you get access to highly sophisticated facilities at the medical center. Your startup is advised by a network of qualified health professionals and entrepreneurs, you get the much coveted access to clinical facilities, and can work out of a well-stocked office space.
Founded in 2014, the Collide Village is located in Addison, a suburb of Dallas in Texas. The organization runs the Collide Village Accelerator Program (CVAP). It is a 3-month intensive program for entrepreneurs that teaches them everything from the definition of a minimum viable product to creating a complete go-to-market strategy. They also get access to a high-profile network of mentors and investors as well as a free full-fledged office space to work in for the entire duration of the program. There is also the lure of the initial funding of $25,000 in exchange for 8% equity in the company.
If you have a startup in the consumer product space and want to witness it mature into a brand, then this is it.
SKU started out in 2011 as Incubation Station. The success of this accelerator can be gauged from the fact that the companies that started out with the assistance from SKU have been successful in receiving follow-up funding to the tune of $2 million. Even more impressive is the fact that all of their alumni startups are still in business. Aptly named, SKU, this Austin accelerator offers a 14-week rigorous program for entrepreneurs. During the period of the program, entrepreneurs meet industry leaders, get access to tools necessary for their success and come face to face with popular retailers to learn the tricks of the industry.