You have a startup and it has great potential, might even be the next big thing. So how do you upscale for significant growth in the beginning? Why are some of these tech startups seeing what seems like overnight success going from $0 to millions in a couple of years? The answer is often through an accelerator program.
Startup accelerators or seed accelerators are a fairly new program that provides support to startup businesses. This could be through a variety of methods such as financial investment, mentoring, education and support or connections. This gives a business that may have the right concept or product but needs funds or the skills of people that they just can’t afford in the early years. This helps advance the business and get them off the ground more quickly.
However, a new type of accelerator program has emerged and this is the corporate accelerator. This has a two fold benefit. Firstly, the corporate can cherry pick the latest up and coming technologies which can give them a competitive advantage. For many tech companies this is an exciting opportunity to get ahead of their competition by investing in these new technologies. By taking a risk on these before anyone else has they have the potential to hit the jack pot and find a truly unique technology.
For the startup there are some great opportunities. Firstly they can get their first customer. Those participating in a corporate accelerator are often fairly large businesses so the startup is usually gaining a big client right up front. This can be huge because often trying to pitch to these companies when you are a startup is difficult.
Having a large corporate as your client can then have a flow on effect for other potential clients. Having a large corporate client can increase consumer confidence in your product and this in itself can drive further business in the door.
So which accelerator should a startup pick?
You first need to think about what the objective of your involvement in an accelerator program is. For instance if you need cash to make your product idea a reality then you really need to focus on the traditional accelerator so that you can get it to market. Or you might really need some experienced guidance and mentorship, which without this you might not be able to progress the business. However, if your product is ready for full production and all of your systems and processes are in place then the corporate accelerator may be just what you need to open doors to that amazing first few clients to really get the business off to a good start.
Accelerators have helped many businesses go from startup to multi million dollar corporations. This sounds great, but it may not be the right move for every business. If you want strategic advice as to the best support opportunities for your startup our team of experienced advisors are happy to help.