Kickstarting Your Venture with Startup Accelerators – What to Expect –

Signing up with a prestigious startup accelerator is one of the best ways to get your new company off the ground. Even if your business is already in the operating stage, you can enter into an accelerator program for guidance on scaling it. Applying for and getting into the program is not exactly easy. The organizers will likely evaluate your business concept before offering you a spot. 

Once accepted, you can take advantage of the intensive workshop designed to speed up the product development process. You’ll have a working prototype ready within a few months instead of the years it would typically take. Accelerator programs offer you funding, guidance, and additional resources. Read ahead to understand what to expect. 

Understanding the Corporate Ecosystem

Having a potentially marketable business idea and transforming it into a successful company is a long and hard road. Entrepreneurs need to learn a lot about how the business ecosystem functions. That’s where startup accelerators come in. The organization offers both monetary and non-monetary support, starting with a coworking space equipped with the machinery, tools, and other infrastructure you need. 

Depending on the kind of prototype you’re developing, you can also get staff assistance. Of course, before applying, you’ll research the different programs available and sign up for the one in the particular industry where you intend to work. Getting accepted gives you added validation that your concept has potential. Most importantly, you’ll gain exposure to a dynamic work environment amidst rising talent with the exciting chance to pick your peers’ brains and, perhaps, build partnerships down the line. 

Mentoring and Guidance

Accelerator programs typically last for four to six months, and you can expect to relocate to the site for the program’s duration. Long 12-hour workdays, intensive coaching, and mentoring are only some of the facets, including guidance on evaluating markets, customer requirements, and market trends. Entrepreneurs are given training in the various aspects of running a business, like team building, advertising, marketing, management, and legal factors like acquiring licensing and permits. 

Funding

The organization will provide you with the initial funding and assist you in honing your skills to become a successful business owner. Preseed and seed funding is typically offered in exchange for equity in your startup. You’ll also interact with venture capitalists and angel investors in their network with the possibility of impressing them with the concepts you’re developing. 

In addition to hands-on work and training, you can expect to attend long seminars, where you’ll get the opportunity to connect with industry figureheads. You’ll also get networking opportunities since notable and successful personalities are invited to interact with budding talent. Building connections all throughout the accelerator program will help you when you’re ready to pitch investors for funding. 

Pitching to Investors

The most critical part of the accelerator training is learning how to acquire funding for your startup. Expect to train in how to design compelling pitch decks and give mock presentations where you’ll tweak the pitch and have it ready for the culmination of the program, or “demo day,” as it is called. 

Entering into an accelerator program is the best thing you can do to get your new venture off the ground. Start your research for the best programs in your city or state today. 

BIO

Alejandro Cremades is a serial entrepreneur and the author of The Art of Startup Fundraising. With a foreword by ‘Shark Tank‘ star, Barbara Corcoran and published by John Wiley & Sons, the book was named one of the best books for entrepreneurs. The book offers a step-by-step guide to today‘s way of raising money for entrepreneurs. 

Most recently, Alejandro built and exited CoFoundersLab, which is one of the largest communities of founders online. 

Prior to CoFoundersLab, Alejandro worked as a lawyer at King & Spalding, where he was involved in one of the biggest investment arbitration cases in history ($113 billion at stake). 

Alejandro is an active speaker and has given guest lectures at the Wharton School of Business, Columbia Business School, and NYU Stern School of Business. 

Alejandro has been involved with the JOBS Act since its inception and was invited to the White House and the US House of Representatives to provide his stands on the new regulatory changes concerning fundraising online.

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