Need an excuse to finally try that startup idea, beat your idea into the form of a pitch, and if you’re lucky, get it funded?
Apply to Capital Factory, a seed-stage startup accelerator program in Austin, TX for which I’m a mentor, investor, and this year a Managing Director. (Ooo fancy!) Each year we pick 5 companies to participate in a 10-week summer program which includes:
- 20 real mentors
Twenty entrepreneurs who have actually been in your shoes — creating companies from scratch, growing to millions in revenue, and often selling them. No posers, no one who was “there for the ride.” Here’s the list; see for yourself. You’ll get both one-on-one time and weekly group meetings.
- $20,000 in cash
You can spend it however you want — quit your day job, buy some ads, license technology, whatever you need. Where does the money come from? From the mentors themselves, personally.
- $20,000 in stuff
Free legal services to set up agreements, contracts, and EULAs, free graphic design work to make a nice logo and website, free PR services for product launches, free office space, free website hosting, free software, and more.
- Raise money and awareness at Demo Day
At the end of the program is “Demo Day,” where you get to pitch in front of 150 investors — both angels and VCs, both individuals and firms. Every year one of the five companies was funded within a week of Demo Day, and others soon after, frequently because of relationships started at Demo Day. Even if you’re not looking to raise money, it’s an experience and personal networking event. We have fantastic speakers too — in years past we’ve had Mike Maples, Naval Ravikant, and Dave McClure.
For more details, including the application process and a 3-minute video which includes interviews from the 2009 and 2010 companies, see the Capital Factory home page.
The deadline is March 20, so get cracking!
Want a leg-up on the competition? Start with my advice garnered from last year’s application process. And stay tuned on this blog — I’ll be posting more advice on pitching.
Questions? Leave a comment.