If joining a startup accelerator program is in your plans for 2020, it’s never too early to get a jumpstart on the competition. First, if you haven’t already, read up on who should ideally apply for these companies, and why (hint: you shouldn’t be doing it for the money). Then, check out the programs below to see if they fit your company’s goals for growth. Note that some of these application deadlines close soon (like, tomorrow).
We update this list monthly, so if you don’t see what you’re looking for, check back February for a fresh list of programs.
New York City
NYC-based FoodFutureCo looks for companies it can help move from early product-market phase to the mainstream, with specific focus on plant-based food, agtech, sustainable seafood, and fighting food waste. Plant-based frozen meal maker Zoni Food, ethical food brand Eat Nice, and analytics platform Farm Fare are all past participants of the program, which was founded in 2015.
The five-month-long program looks for companies on track to gross more than $1 million in annual sales. Four to eight startups are chosen for each cohort. Participants receive up to $10,000 (for 4 to 8 percent equity) along with mentorship opportunities and potential follow-on investment.
Applications close December 31, 2019.
Brinc Food Technology Accelerator
Brinc’s Food Technology Accelerator covers a wide range of what it calls “investment verticals”: agtech, alt protein, cellular agriculture, packaging, food safety, supply chain, and food waste. Startups looking to join the program should have a product-market fit in one of these verticals, along with a defined business model. According to the program website, companies must be willing to incorporate in Hong Kong and, ideally, want to deploy their product or solution in the Southeast Asian market.
Unlike many programs, Brinc charges a $30,000 participation fee for the program, though this can be deducted from the $80,000 investment Brinc gives each participating company (for 10 to 15 percent equity). Startups also receive mentorship, customized curriculum, access to potential investors, and post-program support. Companies must be present in Hong Kong for six weeks of the program for onsite training.
Applications close February 17, 2020.
Coming Soon . . .
Techstars Farm to Fork
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota
A partnership with Cargill and Ecolab, Techstars Farm to Fork program looks for startups and entrepreneurs working up and down the food chain, from agtech and manufacturing to food safety, traceability, and waste reduction. Techstars looks specifically for companies using tech to solve problems in these areas, as program alumni like Spoonshot and Renewal Mill have done.
Chosen participants get a $100,000 convertible note along with mentorship and networking opportunities and access to potential investors. They also get workspace, as relocation to the Minneapolis-St. Paul area is required for the duration of the three-month-long program.
Applications open on January 6, 2020.