What you need to know about business accelerator programs

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If you’re an entrepreneur in this bear market looking to build a venture-scale business using an accelerator program, strap in: I’m a co-founder of an accelerator program and I I have some advice for you.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with starting a lifestyle business. They can generate millions of dollars in revenue and be wholly owned by an individual, but lifestyle businesses generally cannot become multi-billion dollar businesses and scale quickly (although there are always exceptions) .

So, for those who want to start a large-scale business, there are a few steps to building your successful startup.

Related: I spent 10 weeks in LinkedIn’s Creator Accelerator program. Here are 10 things I learned.

Understanding Space

If you want to build a large-scale business, you need to target an industry that has the potential to support rapid growth and large markets. Truly understand the players, market opportunities, and market space you want to enter.

Ask yourself if you have the skills

And if not, can you pass it through your team?

The right skill sets really build a business. If you’re technically strong, hire a co-founder who’s commercially strong to help you create, scale, and share the emotional burden of building a business. I guarantee it will be a spiritual journey (including long soul nights).

To create a launch platform and one prototype

Business plans are outdated. Any investor who asks for a business plan doesn’t understand how successful start-up businesses are started and built.

All you need is a pitch deck, clarity in what you’re doing, and ideally a first prototype to show the inventors. Think deeply about your business and be prepared to model success and failure scenarios.

Get ready for the fundraiser

Once you’ve finally decided to start building that business, whether it’s in biotech, the future of food, Web3, or something else, you need to make sure that while you’re building, you’re ready for the Fund raising.

Founders must raise SAFE ratings. With SAFEs, founders can focus on building the business and not get distracted by legal negotiations.

Some old-school investors don’t like SAFEs because they like the checks that come with convertible notes or a price round, and will push founders to go round and find a lead investor. However, SAFEs are much better for founders to eliminate the need to find a lead investor (who has enough conviction to write you a big first check) and to give you the time to build real conviction and a real business for them. investors to see vs just the concept initially launched.

Related: The pet food industry is rotten. It is time for entrepreneurs to mobilize.

Choose an accelerator

But it is not that simple. Having co-founded IndieBioone of the leading biotech accelerators, and having backed many founders who have gone through Ycombinator, Big Idea Ventures, TechStars and others, I can say that there are a lot of very important things to look for in a startup program. ‘accelerator.

It’s especially important that the people running these acceleration programs and supporting these businesses have experience building and scaling the types of businesses you want to build.

More importantly, you need an accelerator ready to invest. There are many no-investment, no-cost, or low-cost acceleration programs out there that quite honestly are a waste of an entrepreneur‘s time. Go for accelerators willing to put their money where their mouth is and invest in you and your idea!

For accelerator programs, it is much more important that they have the right networks of investors, entrepreneurs and technicians than if you are there in person or have to do demo days. Programming is usually not very important, and in some cases can be negative if it takes a long time or if it is taught by people who have never created startups themselves. Entrepreneurs should be able to learn by talking and getting advice from people who have done what they wanted to do.

Related: The Future of Food: How Biotechnology Will Save Us All

What are the risks ?

Technology and entrepreneurship always have cycles of hype and crashes. We have seen it time and time again; Gartner’s hype cycle. Everyone gets euphoric for tech with euphoric levels of funding, founders and start-ups, but then comes the inevitable crash.

These are the risks of technology. Through these cycles of hype and crashes, wreckage emerges from large corporations, perhaps a requirement of tech cycles. The dot-com industry is a perfect example. Amazon has risen from the rubble of the internet industry crash.

We also saw it with automobiles — a former product of the animal industry with the horse and the buggy, which was replaced by a product of the technology industry — cars. At its height, there were around 300 car manufacturers worldwide. Then there was a massive collapse of automakers, and everyone lost faith in it. But eventually General Motors and Ford became dominant leaders in the space. This hype cycle was necessary to create these giant companies and the market finally got it.

If you choose not to go the accelerator route, you still have options. There are other great angel investors and pre-seed investors out there. Companies destined to succeed are led by mission-driven founders who share my belief in the power of entrepreneurship to uplift humanity and our world.

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