Yes. Because we need one that actually aligns entrepreneurs, investors, and customers to create success. Key problems that I observed.
- Too many classes, not enough learning. Zero classes.
- Too much coaching, not enough doing. Let’s go build.
- Demo days are dumb, 1:1 Customer pitches are better. Let’s go sell.
- Alienate great startups with canned financial terms, negotiate terms on a 1:1 basis. We are investors, valuation terms are part of the job.
- Programs provide zero due diligence (buyer beware), actually perform due diligence like they are investments (because they are). See above..it’s our job.
- Mentors and coaches that don’t have a vested interest, coaches, and mentors should invest. Crowdfund feature (If a mentor/coach can’t invest $1k..they probably aren’t that successful)
- No support to actually acquire customers. Intros are not enough. Selling to enterprise customers is no joke. An intro is access, not execution. If you haven’t sold a 7plus figure deal, no worries. We have!
We designed something different based on what we learned as investors and entrepreneurs.
So, why did we launch a crowdfunded accelerator?
1. Qualified Proprietary Deal Flow: We see a lot of startups that aren’t quite ready for Seed stage (and thus, a fund investment from us). This allows us to spend time and have a financial relationship with startups. We have never had a deal volume issue, it has really been the effort to filter and diligence as a bottleneck.
2. Crowd Signaling Is Valuable: Our industry is so massive and fragmented. We received SEC approval to crowdfund our accelerator with Accredited and Non-Accredited Investors. The minimum amount is $1,000. This means the industry at all levels can invest in our accelerator and evangelize our portfolio.
3. Capital For Great Ideas During a Downturn: COVID has created a catalyst for digital transformation in our space. This is the best time to launch a startup. This could be the worst time to raise pre-seed money.
4. Attracting Non-Industry Investors: Because of the SEC statutes, we are allowed to mass market our accelerator. This will allow us to market to investors that don’t have any awareness of the opportunity in the built environment and get them excited about funding and promoting the most important technology in our society.
The program itself was developed by working with startups that have been through many different accelerators to varying success. We have optimized it for this space AND the most important aspect of early stage: customer acquisition and traction.
We have had great coverage and interest in participating.
Learn more here https://community.shadow.vc/accelerate/startups