The road to entrepreneurship is not easy. Though there are many benefits to bossing up and going out there on your own, people often don’t realize the blood, sweat and (sometimes) tears that come with running a thriving business.
The good news, however, is that now more than ever, there are a growing number of resources for business owners and tech entrepreneurs to grow and scale their business.
For example, incubators and accelerators give developing companies access to investors, mentors and other support that help them become stable, profitable and self-sufficient.
Because the best thing startup entrepreneurs can do is to surround themselves with people who are smarter than they are, we’ve outlined a few accelerators you need to apply to jumpstart your business in 2019 and beyond.
Seed Spot Impact Accelerator
Do you have a business that is going to change the world? If so, then Seed Spot is the perfect home for your business. Focused on impact driven ventures, Seed Spot not only provides entrepreneurs with all of the tools they need to take their business to the next level, but they do it with no stake in your business. While some other accelerators may require equity in your company in exchange for their vast resources, Seed Spot was created solely with the mission of helping you get more proven traction and impact for your business. The program lasts eight weeks and meets twice weekly in the evenings.
A virtual training “gym” for underrepresented startup founders, Founder Gym’s six-week global program is 100 percent virtual, and 100 percent focused on helping start-up entrepreneurs become investor ready. All of FG’s expert trainers work at the highest levels of venture capital and/or are venture-capital backed founders, themselves, and are able to equip founders with the tools they need to survive and thrive in business. And the best part about it, is that your business can be anywhere in the world. Because it wouldn’t really be a “gym,” without a community environment, the program emphasizes that we all “grow” together—in life and in business.
1863 Ventures Pipeline Program
1863 Ventures (formerly Project 500) actively recruits and retains a pipeline of investment-ready businesses that can scale through supply chain contracts, tech scouting and joint venture opportunities, through its Pipeline Program. Participants who are selected for the cohort will do a deep dive into an intense training that will help ensure that there is a product-market fit for their business and how to addresses the needs of both the market and the customer. Helmed by founder Melissa Bradley, this Washington D.C. based program offers one-on-one office hours, advice from corporate mentors, and access to subsidized legal, tax, accounting and marketing services throughout the duration of the program.
The good news? Y Combinator has been at the forefront of some of the most successful startups in the world, including: Airbnb, Dropbox and Reddit. The not so good news? There are very few minority founders who have successfully been accepted into its competitive program. Y Combinator however, is trying to change that. So if you’re a minority or underrepresented founder, now is a better time than any to apply to this excelerator program which is responsible for many successes in the startup world. Known to provide early-stage companies with a seed investment—in YC’s case, $150,000, there are various other benefits that include mentorship and educational resources through a short-term program that culminates in a demo day. Once accepted into Y Combinator, you’ll be apart of a community of founders that have all earned unmatched success in business and technology.
If you have a dream, then you can succeed with Dreamit Ventures. Dreamit Ventures has been centered on diversity for years, and is focused specifically on digital health. The urban tech accelerator is designed for pre-series A companies seeking to grow their business. Operating in Philadelphia, New York City, Baltimore, and Austin, Dreamit has launched more than 200 companies that have raised $275 million at combined valuations of more than $1 billion.
Morgan Stanley Multicultural Innovation Lab
Very few companies put their money where their mouth is, and Morgan Stanley has successfully done so. The company’s Multicultural Innovation Lab has one goal in mind: breaking down the barriers for women and minority-led startups. Led by Carla Harris, Morgan Stanley’s vice chairman of wealth management, the program which is housed in New York City offers something many minority startup founders don’t have: access to capital and financial advisors who can help fast track their business to success.