Scale with the best accelerators and incubators in Washington D.C.

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Choosing The Right Accelerator

Start-ups are hard. Choose an accelerator that guides you in the right direction.

Patrick Collison, Founder of Stripe

"I doubt that Stripe would have worked without YC. It's that simple."

Patrick Collison, Founder, Stripe

Chris Lynch, Founder of Atlas Venture

"Accelerators claim they are in it for the long haul — I call bullshit"

Chris Lynch, Founder, Atlas Venture

Raj Aggarwal, Founder of Localytics

"The network we built with Techstars was incredibly valuable during and after the program."

Raj Aggarwal, Founder, Localytics

What truly matters

Domain expertise > Funding amount

Do they know why they succeeded in the past?

Accelerator’s connections in the industry

Figuring what’s in it for you

Discover your perfect match

No accelerator or incubator is perfect for every start-up. Your business’s context and constraints matter. Identify your perfect match by answering this short questionnaire.

Washington D.C.'s Top Accelerators By Neighborhoods

Comparing Accelerators

NameAerial ScoreStandard DealAddress#Investments#ExitsDetails
Techstars Washington DC by JP Morgan9.9Washington, DC, USA6,002475Learn more
International Finance Corporation8.82121 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20433, USA473112Learn more
US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administation5.5Herbert C. Hoover Building, 1401 Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20230, USA437Learn more
Civstart4.7Washington, DC, USA173Learn more
New Venture Fund4.61201 Connecticut Ave NW #300, Washington, DC 20036, USALearn more
Dcode4.6North Tower, 2001 K St NW Suite 230, Washington, DC 20006, USA5Learn more
Women's Business Enterprise National Council4.6$20KWashington, DC, USALearn more
Halcyon Incubator4.53400 Prospect St NW, Washington, DC 20007, USA5Learn more
Red Cell Partners4.5Washington, DC, USA7Learn more
2Gether-International4.5Washington, DC, USA16Learn more
GW Summer Startup Accelerator4.51922 F St NW STE 304, Washington, DC 20052, USALearn more
StartupHoyas4.5Washington, DC, USALearn more
Georgetown University4.53700 O St NW, Washington, DC 20057, USALearn more
Wireless Foundation4.51400 16th St NW #600, Washington, DC 20036, USA3Learn more
US Ignite4.51150 18th St NW #750, Washington, DC 20036, USALearn more
Land Accelerator4.5Washington, DC, USALearn more
Conservation X Labs4.51066 31st St NW, Washington, DC 20007, USALearn more
Tauzin Consultants4.41099 New York Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001, USALearn more
MassLight4.4$38KWashington, DC, USALearn more
Points of Light Institute4.31875 K St NW, Washington, DC 20006, USA1Learn more

This page covers the top accelerators and incubators in Washington D.C..

However if geography isn’t a hard constraint, and you are only looking for the best incubators and accelerators across the US, check here.

Brief Overview Of Different Accelerators

1) Techstars Washington DC by JP Morgan

Techstars Washington DC by JP Morgan - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Washington D.C.

Techstars Washington DC by JP Morgan is a startup accelerator program that focuses on leveraging the unique strengths of DCs innovation ecosystem. The program has sector focuses including health and wellness, education, finance, government and civic engagement, and cybersecurity. It is open to founders of all backgrounds, particularly emphasizing equitable access to funding for underrepresented entrepreneurs. Through game-changing investment and community partnerships, the accelerator aims to dismantle barriers that limit opportunities for Black, Hispanic, Latino, Indigenous American, and Pacific Islander founders. Founded by Brad Feld, Chisa Egbelu, Daniel Mason, David Brown, David Cohen, and Jared Polis, the program runs for 13 weeks and offers mentorship, access to experts, networking opportunities, and investment. Additionally, it collaborates with industry partners to drive innovation and support diverse founders. They provide funding in the form of Early Stage VC and Seed investments to selected startups, with a particular focus on advancing industries such as Fintech and Cybersecurity.

Techstars Washington DC by JP Morgan's Website
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2) International Finance Corporation

International Finance Corporation - building Washington D.C.'s entrepreneurial future

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is a private equity and venture capital subsidiary with a focus on the private sector in developing countries. With over 60 years of experience, the institution plays a vital role in advancing clean energy adoption and supporting startups in emerging markets. They recently partnered with the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), committing $1 billion to accelerate the transition to clean energy. Actively involved in the Energy Transition Accelerator Financing Platform (ETAF) managed by IRENA, they aim to attract private capital to global energy transition projects. Over the past decade, IFC has invested and mobilized over $32 billion in the energy sector, financing projects like hydropower, solar, and wind with a total capacity of 22 GW. Their Startup Catalyst platform, launched in 2016, focuses on investing in incubators, accelerators, and seed funds to support early-stage startups. Additionally, the organization introduced MALENA, an AI-powered tool for ESG analysis in emerging markets, and runs the Market Accelerator for Green Construction Program mobilizing $2 billion in investments. The institution's involvement provides startups and projects in clean energy and sustainability with expertise, funding, and networking opportunities.

International Finance Corporation's Website
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3) US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administation

US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administation - supporting founders in their growth journey

The U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration (EDA) leads the federal economic development agenda by promoting innovation and competitiveness to prepare American regions for success in the global economy. As an agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, it invests in communities, promotes American innovation, and accelerates long-term sustainable economic growth, with a focus on economically distressed regions. The EDA runs the Build to Scale (B2S) program, which aims to accelerate the growth of regional economies by focusing on industries of the future and fostering cross-sector partnerships for commercialization assistance. The impact of the organization is demonstrated through investments in distressed regions, leading to innovation, job creation, and leveraging private investments. It specializes in promoting innovation and competitiveness across sectors like technology, manufacturing, and infrastructure. In addition to promoting innovation, the EDA provides support, funding, grants, technical assistance, and collaboration opportunities to eligible communities and organizations. Overall, the institution plays a crucial role in fostering economic growth and creating jobs in distressed regions, with a particular focus on the General Tech industry.

US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administation's Website
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4) Civstart

Civstart - enabling start-ups to fundraise successfully

CivStart is a non-profit accelerator with a mission to bridge the gap between innovative startups and state & local governments, focusing on AI applications within the government sector. In partnership with the National League of Cities, the accelerator program lasts 12 months and connects emerging govtech startups with the tools, expertise, and opportunities to scale their solutions effectively for public sector challenges. Participating startups engage with 5-10 governments, receiving feedback and support, leading to a Pitchfest at the State of GovTech event for potential pilot implementations. CivStart offers a Venture Partner Network for investment, partnerships, and guidance, alongside benefits like access to a Local Gov Innovation Hub, market intelligence, strategic networking, tailored mentorships, consulting, and media support. Founded by Anthony Jamison, Nick Lyell, and Sarah Nicoll (Kerner), the organization targets industries like Artificial Intelligence, providing a platform for startups to showcase solutions and receive advisory insights, with a 104-week duration.

Civstart's Website
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5) New Venture Fund

New Venture Fund - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Washington D.C.

New Venture Fund (NVF) is a creative problem-solving organization that operates through fiscal sponsorship, providing support to change leaders to accelerate positive impact efficiently. With a charitable portfolio exceeding $356 million across nine global regions, NVF funds projects and initiatives worldwide. Collaborating with philanthropists, change-makers, and disruptors, the organization aims to create a fair, healthy, and sustainable world. While specific domains are not listed, the impact of the organization spans various areas. The exact number of start-ups, investors, and program duration are undisclosed, but the focus on fiscal sponsorship implies diverse project support. Although additional perks for participating start-ups are not detailed, NVF likely offers valuable resources. Notable figures leading NVF include those managing general inquiries via info@newventurefund.org, media inquiries through communications@newventurefund.org, and can be reached at 202-595-1061. While the specific duration and metrics of the accelerator remain unspecified, the commitment of NVF to efficiency and impact showcases a promising experience for start-ups participating in the program.

New Venture Fund's Website
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6) Dcode

Dcode - Washington D.C.'s true entrepreneurial hub

Dcode is an emerging tech and innovation advisory firm that connects the tech industry with the federal government to drive commercial innovation in the federal market. Founded by Meagan Metzger and Megan Vorland, the company's 10-week acceleration program has supported over 100 tech companies, helping them break into and scale within the federal market, leading to the securing of 160+ federal contracts. Notably, they have assisted 20+ alumni unicorns, tech companies with valuations exceeding $1 billion. The accelerator has also advised 2,000+ federal government innovators on leveraging private sector products and practices to enhance government operations. Dcode focuses on key tech domains like Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, and SaaS, offering a simpler, faster route for tech companies to thrive in the federal market without taking equity, requiring only a one-time fee of $1,000. This approach positions the organization as a valuable resource for tech companies seeking to collaborate effectively with government agencies and drive impactful outcomes.

Dcode's Website
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7) Women's Business Enterprise National Council

Women's Business Enterprise National Council - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Washington D.C.

The Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) Collegiate Accelerator is a premier startup program designed to foster growth for collegiate female founders and recent graduates. The 2024 cohort comprises 33 talented entrepreneurs from 17 Universities and Colleges nationwide, embarking on an entrepreneurial journey with a focus on the fundamentals of startup growth. Participants benefit from peer-to-peer connections and personalized mentorship from the institution's extensive network of over 19,000 WBENC-Certified Women Business Enterprises (WBEs) and 550+ National Corporate Members. The five-day program, located in Denver, Colorado, includes exclusive opportunities at the WBENC National Conference, where students compete in a Pitch Competition for a chance to win up to $20,000 and showcase their ventures. 57% of the 2024 cohort are alumnae of the WBENC Women of Color Incubator, aimed at strengthening entrepreneurial ideas for female students at Historically Black Colleges & Universities. The program, supporting diverse ventures in industries like Healthcare Tech and General Tech, offers personalized mentorship, networking opportunities, and funding incentives, solidifying its role in empowering the next generation of women entrepreneurs.

Women's Business Enterprise National Council's Website
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8) Halcyon Incubator

Halcyon Incubator - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

Halcyon accelerates the impact-driven future of business by providing fellowships, funding vehicles, and thought leadership to support social enterprise founders and their ventures. They seek and celebrate creativity in all forms, galvanizing creative individuals aspiring to promote social good. The institution offers a 14-week Residential Fellowship program where a diverse cohort of fellows lives and works at Halcyons headquarters in Washington, DC, culminating in a final showcase. Fellows receive mentorship and training in investment readiness and business fundamentals. The program has hosted numerous fellows over the years. Founded by Kate Goodall, the organization specializes in supporting social impact ventures across various domains as a sector-agnostic entity. The program aims to help social entrepreneurs secure funding and provides access to resources, networking opportunities, and mentorship, fostering a supportive community environment.

Halcyon Incubator's Website
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9) Red Cell Partners

Red Cell Partners - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

Red Cell Partners is an incubation firm specializing in building and investing in technology-led companies focused on national security and healthcare. Founded in 2020, the accelerator has already incubated 7 companies by 2023 and launched a total of 10 ventures, with an average incubation period of 17 months. The companies under its wing have collectively raised over $355 million in funding. Red Cell Partners operates with 47 full-time employees and is spearheaded by notable individuals including Grant Verstandig as the Founder, Chairman, & CEO, David Silverman as the COO, and Naimish Patel, George Barnes, and Honorable Veronica Daigle overseeing the healthcare, cybersecurity, and national security practices, respectively. Some of the noteworthy start-ups that have emerged from Red Cell Partners include 'Analyst Obsessed,' 'Resilience in the Face of Disruption,' and 'The Augmented Future is Here.' The accelerator is committed to revolutionizing critical sectors by harnessing innovation and technology, with a key focus on rejuvenating healthcare, defense, and cybersecurity systems for a future of growth and advancement.

Red Cell Partners's Website
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10) 2Gether-International

2Gether-International - Washington D.C.'s true entrepreneurial hub

The leading startup accelerator, specifically designed to support founders with disabilities, was founded in 2019 with a mission to empower disabled entrepreneurs by providing them with the necessary resources to establish successful high-growth, high-impact startups. Challenging the conventional entrepreneurial narrative, it emphasizes disability as a competitive advantage for businesses. Tools, guidance, and a supportive community are offered to help founders strengthen their pitch, access funding, and connect with like-minded disabled entrepreneurs. The Disability Startup Network, comprising over 500 disabled entrepreneurs, facilitates collaboration and innovation among its members. Specializing in technology-based startups, the organization supports ventures across various industries such as healthcare and social impact. Participants benefit from peer support, expert mentorship, networking opportunities, and advocacy for changing the perception of disability in entrepreneurship. Key individuals driving the organization include [Key People's Names]. Notable startups that have benefitted from the accelerator include [Startup Names].

2Gether-International's Website
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11) GW Summer Startup Accelerator

GW Summer Startup Accelerator - supporting Washington D.C.'s best founders

The George Washington University (GW) offers a summer program aimed at empowering students and alumni in transforming their startup concepts into thriving businesses. Lasting for nine weeks, this accelerator supports early-stage ventures by providing resources, mentorship, and a stipend. The inaugural program hosted 20 participants from 10 different ventures, with teams of up to four members, at least half being current GW affiliates. Participants benefit from on-campus housing, weekly workshops on essential topics, mentorship from seasoned entrepreneurs, and guidance from specialized advisers. The program encourages startups in various fields like technology, healthcare, social impact, and consumer goods, fostering a diverse range of ideas to cultivate innovation across sectors. With a focus on refining business models and attracting investors, the program offers participants a conducive environment to concentrate solely on their startups. Notable founders include Daniel Solove and Jonathan Mark Sackier. The accelerator prioritizes the success stories of its participants as a measure of its effectiveness in propelling startups to the next level.

GW Summer Startup Accelerator's Website
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12) StartupHoyas

StartupHoyas - building Washington D.C.'s entrepreneurial future

Georgetown Entrepreneurship, an initiative at Georgetown University, fosters an entrepreneurial mindset among students while building a culture of entrepreneurship. Within this initiative is StartupHoyas, an accelerator supporting student-led startups by offering resources, mentorship, and networking opportunities to drive their innovative ideas towards success. The program specializes in healthcare entrepreneurship, organizing events and sponsoring activities in this domain. StartupHoyas Law (SHL) caters to entrepreneurship for law students, exploring the intersection of law and business. Some additional benefits include access to the Georgetown Venture Lab, pitch competitions for funding, mentorship from experts, and year-round networking events. Founders of StartupHoyas include John Carrol, Newton Howard, and Sonal Shah. The accelerator also houses a dedicated webpage for healthcare entrepreneurship and facilitates a Slack group for the Georgetown entrepreneurial community. While specific metrics like the number of start-ups associated or funded are not disclosed, the program likely connects students with a network of investors and mentors.

StartupHoyas's Website
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13) Georgetown University

Georgetown University - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

Georgetown Entrepreneurship at Georgetown University is a powerful force for positive change, instilling an entrepreneurial mindset in students and fostering a culture of entrepreneurship. A student-run nonprofit accelerator known as Georgetown Ventures, established in 2017, empowers entrepreneurs, with over $30 million raised collectively by startups. Over 90 startups have been supported, with 60 active student consultants contributing their expertise. Each startup benefits from 150+ hours of strategic assistance. Startups go through programs like LaunchPad for early-stage startups and Venture Accelerator for more advanced ventures, receiving curated deliverables. With a commitment to inclusivity, Georgetown Ventures ensures founders from all backgrounds excel. The accelerator provides unique partnership opportunities worth $30,000 and access to experienced consultants for creative and technical support. Georgetown Ventures operates under the leadership of John Carrol, Newton Howard, and Sonal Shah, focusing on industries like Edtech and General Tech.

Georgetown University's Website
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14) Wireless Foundation

Wireless Foundation - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Washington D.C.

The Wireless Foundation Accelerator, in collaboration with Camelback Ventures and Fast Forward, empowers social entrepreneurs leveraging wireless technology for societal good in American communities. Camelback Ventures focuses on supporting early-stage, underrepresented entrepreneurs, offering programs like the Camelback Fellowship and the Camelback Guardian Summit. Fast Forward's Startup Accelerator connects tech nonprofits with seed funding, mentors, and peer communities, boasting alumni who have impacted 186 million lives and raised over $753 million in follow-on funding. While specific specialization domains are not explicitly mentioned, the focus is on mobile-first solutions addressing pressing issues. Partnerships with Camelback Ventures and Fast Forward provide coaching, funding, and community support, driving positive change in various domains such as Mobile Apps, Artificial Intelligence, and Edtech. Notable beneficiaries include start-ups that have made significant impacts over the past decade. The Wireless Foundation Accelerator stands out for its commitment to improving societal impact through cutting-edge wireless technology.

Wireless Foundation's Website
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15) US Ignite

US Ignite - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

US Ignite is a company that leads the acceleration of the smart city movement, guiding communities into a connected future, fostering private sector growth, and advancing crucial technology research for smart city development. They develop next-generation apps benefiting developers, communities, and individuals for transformative public benefit. Their active support for startups and small businesses plays a vital role in building successful smart communities. Collaborating with various partners, universities, and communities through public-private partnerships, US Ignite supports programs in smart cities data, advanced wireless research platforms, and smart bases initiatives like Project OVERCOME and Fort Carson AI for Traffic and Weather. In addition to their program support, US Ignite offers technical assistance, capacity-building services, and job opportunities. Founded by Glenn Ricart and Joe Kochan, the company operates at the intersection of Artificial Intelligence and SaaS (Software as a Service), driving innovation and federal funding opportunities for broadband initiatives in Knight Communities.

US Ignite's Website
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16) Land Accelerator

Land Accelerator - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Washington D.C.

The Land Accelerator is a program dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and companies that focus on restoring degraded land to promote environmental and economic benefits globally. By fostering entrepreneurship, it provides a cost-effective approach to revitalizing ecosystems and rural communities. The program offers selective training and a curated network for entrepreneurs in the sectors of Fintech and Agriculture Tech. It operates in Africa, Latin America, and South Asia, aligning with initiatives like the African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative (AFR100) to restore millions of hectares of land. In Africa, the program consists of two tracks: Land Accelerator Africa and Land Accelerator Landscapes, which collectively support hundreds of companies. Since 2018, the program has attracted thousands of applicants from 45 countries, with alumni creating over 9,000 jobs, working with 250,000 farmers, and restoring 201,000 hectares of land. Notable benefits for participants include gaining access to mentorship, networking opportunities, technical training, and tools to enhance their business capabilities.

Land Accelerator's Website
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17) Conservation X Labs

Conservation X Labs - connecting start-up founders with success

Conservation X Labs is an innovative organization founded by Alex Dehgan and Paul Bunje. The organization is dedicated to utilizing technology and innovation to combat critical conservation challenges and prevent the impending sixth mass extinction caused by human actions. They focus on various domains such as biodiversity, climate change, and invasive species, aiming to reverse trends in species loss. Additionally, Conservation X Labs introduced Oceans X Labs, the world's first conservation accelerator addressing aquaculture sustainability. The accelerator program leverages open innovation tools like challenges and prizes to attract diverse skillsets to conservation problems and promote collaboration among conservation entrepreneurs and volunteers. Notable success stories include aquaculture-focused start-ups securing significant investments post-program participation. While specific metrics like the number of associated start-ups and investors remain undisclosed, the organization's strategic approach sets Conservation X Labs at the forefront of conservation innovation in the environmental tech industry.

Conservation X Labs's Website
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18) Tauzin Consultants

Tauzin Consultants - supporting Washington D.C.'s best founders

Tauzin Consultants was founded by Billy Tauzin and is a government relations, business development, and business incubation firm specializing in healthcare, financial services, energy and environment, telecommunications, transportation, and infrastructure development. The organization was established in January 2011, and the accelerator actively serves clients nationwide, known for its work in industries such as Healthcare Tech and Clean Energy. The team at Tauzin Consultants comprises former U.S. Congressman W.J. 'Billy' Tauzin and his son Thomas Tauzin, bringing extensive experience in government and business to the table. While specific metrics regarding the number of start-ups associated, investors, funded start-ups, and program duration are not publicly disclosed, the company offers additional perks and benefits to its participants. Tauzin Consultants provides a valuable platform for entrepreneurs looking to navigate government regulations, foster business growth, and access incubation services for their startups.

Tauzin Consultants's Website
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19) MassLight

MassLight - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Washington D.C.

MassLight is a startup accelerator founded by Daniel Abrams. It offers participating startups seed funding, training, mentorship, networking opportunities, and a demo day for pitching to investors. The accelerator provides an average equity deal of around $38,000 in exchange for a percentage of the startups' equity. The program acts as a short-term growth initiative, serving as a market-readiness and investment-development boot camp for startups in various industries. Participating startups benefit from unique training opportunities, formal mentoring programs with experienced entrepreneurs, investors, and business professionals, as well as networking with other innovators. At the end of the accelerator, there is a pitch day where each team can showcase their startup to potential investors, creating pathways for future partnerships and funding opportunities. Startups interested in the accelerator can apply for the Build-for-Equity program, which provides capital and a dedicated tech team from MassLight.

MassLight's Website
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20) Points of Light Institute

Points of Light Institute - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Washington D.C.

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, the Points of Light Institute is the world's largest organization dedicated to volunteer service. Their mission is to create a global culture of civic engagement by connecting individuals, nonprofit organizations, and corporations to drive people-powered change worldwide. Operating at the intersection of these groups, the institute tackles societal challenges and builds a sustainable future. The Points of Light Global Network spans 39 countries, comprising over 145 affiliates that collectively mobilize 16.7 million hours of volunteer service annually, valued at $499 million. Within the institute operates the Civic Accelerator, focusing on investing in startups with a social impact. Notable investments include Cell-Ed, a for-profit enterprise from Palo Alto, and STEM NOLA, a nonprofit from New Orleans, both addressing digital inclusion and talent development. The accelerator offers funding, mentorship, networking, and access to resources within the Points of Light network. Founded by George H. W. Bush and Marian L. Heard, the accelerator demonstrates a commitment to fostering positive change through collaboration.

Points of Light Institute's Website
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21) Peace Tech Lab.

Peace Tech Lab. - supporting Washington D.C.'s best founders

PeaceTech Lab is a notable player in the field of peacetech, dedicating its efforts to reducing violent conflict by harnessing the power of technology, media, and data to accelerate peacebuilding endeavors. The organization operates the PeaceTech Accelerator, a prominent international program that collaborates with key partners like C5, SAP NS2, and Amazon Web Services, and is based at the United States Institute of Peace in Washington, D.C. The core mission of the accelerator revolves around supporting startups that develop cutting-edge technologies to manage, predict, or prevent conflicts while fostering sustainable peace. Selected startups participate in an intensive eight-week program, benefiting from mentorship, training, and a focus on scalability, security, and cost-effectiveness. The accelerator's focus areas span misinformation, hate speech, peace media, and other peacetech initiatives. Graduates from the program go on to address multifaceted challenges, showcasing the commitment to leveraging cloud innovation and uniting technology experts with conflict management specialists to drive positive change. The impact of the accelerator underscores the dedication to advancing peace through technology-driven, data-centric solutions.

Peace Tech Lab.'s Website
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22) The US Russia Foundation

The US Russia Foundation - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

The U.S.-Russia Foundation, also known as USRF, is an organization dedicated to strengthening relations between the United States and the Russian Federation. Established as the legacy organization of the U.S. Russia Investment Fund, founded under the Support for Eastern European Democracy Act of 1989 and the Freedom Support Act of 1992, its mission is to promote free enterprise, support democracy, and enhance ties between the two countries. USRF focuses on grant programs such as Outreach, Education, and Training in International and Domestic Law to improve legal expertise in Russia and Educational Exchanges for professional development and networking opportunities for Russian attorneys. Its specialization lies in legal capacity-building, governance, and citizen rights, fostering a robust legal framework in Russia. Although not a traditional accelerator, the organization provides valuable benefits including insights into the Russian legal systems, networking opportunities, and educational exchanges to facilitate knowledge transfer and collaboration. Industries related to USRF include Edtech.

The US Russia Foundation's Website
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23) 1863 Ventures

1863 Ventures - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Washington D.C.

1863 Ventures, a Black-led national business development nonprofit accelerator and venture capital fund, is dedicated to empowering New Majority Founders, including Black and Latino individuals, who have historically been underestimated. With a mission to generate $100 billion of new wealth for the New Majority, they support over 3,200 entrepreneurs nationwide, offering resources like capital investments, curated curricula, grant funding, and partnerships. The accelerator assists marginalized entrepreneurs in transitioning from high potential to high growth stages, with programs tailored for various entrepreneurial phases. While their specialization domains are broad, focusing on New Majority Founders implies support across diverse industries. Through strategic partnerships, 1863 Ventures ensures timely resource provision and prioritizes an outcomes-driven business strategy approach. Noteworthy is their commitment to early stage companies by offering alternatives to predatory financing options, targeting those who lack a 'friends and family' round. The organization's impact transcends mere financial metrics, aiming to cultivate sustainable businesses and wealth for underrepresented entrepreneurs.

1863 Ventures's Website
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24) Springboard Enterprises

Springboard Enterprises - supporting Washington D.C.'s best founders

Springboard Enterprises is a global network of entrepreneurs, investors, and advisors dedicated to accelerating the success of women entrepreneurs in technology and life sciences. The institution's mission is to empower women-led entrepreneurial companies by providing access to essential resources and a global community of experts, ensuring equal opportunities for funding and growth. They boast a trusted community of specialized advisors, investors, and industry leaders who assist women entrepreneurs in scaling their businesses. Springboard offers specialized innovation programs such as Life Sciences, Digital Health, Retail Tech, and Womens Health Innovation Programs. With over 920 companies associated, they have collectively raised significant capital, with approximately 90% of them successfully going public. The total value created by these companies amounts to $39.1 billion, including support for 10 unicorn companies. Their accelerator programs offer personal advisory teams for women entrepreneurs, along with Dolphin Tank Pitch Events and a global reach that extends to Australia through SBE Australia. Springboard's impact is evident in empowering women-led companies in Healthcare Tech and General Tech industries, driving innovation and growth.

Springboard Enterprises's Website
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25) Techmerge

Techmerge - Washington D.C.'s true entrepreneurial hub

Techmerge, an award-winning program by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), accelerates the adoption of innovation in emerging markets by matching innovators worldwide with leading companies. The program follows a six-step approach that includes assessing, sourcing, selecting, matching, piloting, and scaling innovative solutions to address global challenges in key domains such as health, resilience, and sustainable cooling. Over 300 innovators have been selected and matched with more than 135 adopters, resulting in funding of over 125 pilot projects totaling $8.5 million. Innovators participating in Techmerge have raised over $300 million in investment, with notable initiatives like Butterfly Network's Butterfly iQ ultrasound system and a Seismic AI Early Warning System. The program not only funds and supports pilot projects but also engages in building commercial relationships to de-risk investments. Industries benefitting from Techmerge include Renewable Energy, Healthcare Tech, and Clean Energy, making it a catalyst for impactful solutions in emerging markets.

Techmerge's Website
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26) National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer

National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer - Washington D.C.'s true entrepreneurial hub

The National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer (NCET2) is a prestigious accelerator focused on discovering and developing transformative startups that meet the business needs of its Fortune 500 corporate members. By sourcing startups from universities, angel groups, and state funding organizations, it plays a pivotal role in bridging the gap between early-stage companies and established corporations. One of its prominent programs is the Hyundai 2022 Zer01ne Accelerator, offering startups a chance to collaborate with Hyundai and Kia on future technologies across various tech themes such as auto tech, mobility services, and smart logistics, with the potential opportunity for integration into Hyundai group vehicles. Additionally, the organization partners with companies like Hyundai Cradle and No7 Beauty Company for open innovation challenges, focusing on areas like cybersecurity, AI, and beauty treatments beyond traditional approaches. The accelerator provides virtual startup pitches, corporate membership, and valuable connections to facilitate partnerships between startups and Fortune 500 companies. With a strong presence in industries like Logistics and Supply Chain, Artificial Intelligence, and Cybersecurity, it remains a key player in driving innovation and technological advancements in the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

National Council of Entrepreneurial Tech Transfer's Website
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Top Reasons Start-ups Participate In Accelerators

Early state financing

Big ideas arise mostly when you don’t have to worry about day to day expenses.

Peer learning

There’s not enough time in the world to learn from one’s own mistakes. Peer learning helps.

Holistic growth

Marketing, Sales, Tech, Ops, HR, Finance, Admin...... you can’t go wrong in any one field.

Learning about market forces

The market seems fair from a distance. But there are certain patterns to how it operates.

Why an accelerator might not be right for you

It's usually helpful to consider potential pitfalls. Some common misconceptions

Are the alumni actually helpful?

An accelerator's alumni network can play a big role in your longer term growth. But ask around and figure if any of them gave back even a couple of hours in the past year.

What's the real value of your equity

There's a math behind how accelerators decide whether your start-up is worth investing. Did you run the calculation for diluting your equity?

Figuring out the failure rates

Everyone can point to a few success stories. Though in general 95% of all start-ups fail. An important question is- what %ge of an accelerator's start-up survive after 3 years.

FAQs About Start-up Accelerators

Author Bio

Michael Li

Michael Li

For the last 10+ years Michael has helped start-ups of all scales and sizes succeed. A 2X entrepreneur, he is now working on Aerial to help founders avoid costly mistakes. He regularly writes for publications like the Wall Street Journal, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, Harvard Business Review and others.

Last updated date 4/5/2024

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Accelerators and Incubators in washington

Looking for the best accelerators in Washington DC? Accelerators can provide your startup with invaluable resources, mentorship, and networking opportunities to help you succeed. With Washington DC's thriving start-up culture, choosing the right accelerator can make all the difference in the growth and success of your business. When considering which accelerator to join, it's essential to evaluate factors such as the industry focus, mentorship opportunities, funding options, and success rate of previous cohorts. The best accelerators will offer tailored support and guidance to help your start-up thrive in the competitive market. Washington DC has been home to several successful start-ups that have emerged from top accelerators in the city. Companies like Optoro, Upside Travel, and Mapbox have all flourished with the support and resources provided by accelerators in Washington DC, showcasing the immense potential for growth and success in the city's start-up ecosystem.

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