Grow your start-up with Arizona's best accelerators & incubators

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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

Two-way communication > Interview

Accelerator’s brand power

Do they know why they succeeded in the past?

Do the alumni rate them truly well?

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.

Arizona's Top Accelerators By Neighborhoods

Comparing Accelerators

NameAerial ScoreStandard DealAddress#Investments#ExitsDetails
Arizona State University- Med Tech Accelerator7.61151 S Forest Ave, Tempe, AZ, USA4Learn more
Arizona Center for Innovation4.61800 E Innovation Park Dr, Oro Valley, AZ 85755, USA3Learn more
Seed Spot4.6515 E Grant St, Phoenix, AZ 85004, USA4Learn more
SEED SPOT4.6515 E Grant St, Phoenix, AZ 85004, USA2Learn more
eSeed Challenge4.5up to $6KStudent Services Bldg, 1151 S Forest Ave, Tempe, AZ 85287, USA4Learn more
Emerge (Accelerator)4.5Arizona, USA11Learn more
Tech Launch Arizona4.5The Refinery at The Bridges, 1600 E. Idea Ln, Tucson, AZ 85713, USA3Learn more
University of Arizona - McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship4.5McClelland Hall, 1130 E Helen St #202, Tucson, AZ 85721, USA3Learn more
Black Dog Venture Partners4.5Arizona, USA6Learn more
Seedscout4.5Arizona, USALearn more
Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation4.5275 Gateway Dr, Phoenix, AZ 85034, USALearn more
Women's Innovation Fund Accelerator4.45215 N Sabino Canyon Rd, Tucson, AZ 85750, USALearn more
Skysong Innovations4.11475 N Scottsdale Rd #200, Scottsdale, AZ 85257, USALearn more
5Lights Group4.04280 N Campbell Ave Suite 200, Tucson, AZ 85718, USA11Learn more
AZ Disruptors2.1Arizona, USALearn more
Yoo & Co Accelerator2.13110 N Central Ave Ste. D-153, Phoenix, AZ 85012, USALearn more

This page covers the top accelerators and incubators in Arizona.

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) Arizona State University- Med Tech Accelerator

Arizona State University- Med Tech Accelerator - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

This flagship program, part of the Mayo Clinic and Arizona State University Alliance for Health Care, focuses on accelerating early-stage medical device and health care technology companies. Lasting for an intensive 6 months, the accelerator accepts up to 12 startups per cycle and offers mentorship from a network of over 300 experienced mentors. The program aims to equip startups with the tools necessary to attract investments and specializes in medtech and health care innovations. Startups in the accelerator have access to industry experts, entrepreneurs in residence, and ASU's Rapid Startup School. Key figures like George Poste, Gregory Rodriguez, and Jeff Cunningham are among the founders of the institution. Distinguished medical mentors provide guidance, while the curriculum focuses on practical skills for successful commercialization. The program likely encompasses medical devices, diagnostics, digital health solutions, and more. Notable features include a trusted medtech entrepreneurship curriculum, insights from experienced entrepreneurs, mentors, and physicians. The MedTech Accelerator has a mission to advance patient care and improve the science of health care delivery.

Arizona State University- Med Tech Accelerator's Website
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2) Arizona Center for Innovation

Arizona Center for Innovation - building Arizona's entrepreneurial future

The University of Arizona Center for Innovation (UACI) is a critical startup incubator network in Southern Arizona, founded in 2003. With over 120 companies directly served and a significant impact on entrepreneurs, it aims to cultivate scalable startup ventures that drive the Arizona economy. The program provides crucial access to mentors, education, and physical spaces like offices, labs, and meeting rooms, essential for startup growth. The support structure includes mentorship, connections to service providers, industry groups, and potential partners, emphasizing technology-driven ventures. Led by founders Benn Konsynski and Wendell Gibby, the institution specializes in nurturing companies in sectors such as Edtech and General Tech. Accepted startups benefit from the University of Arizona's resources, internship opportunities, and industry-specific support, positioning them for success. Overall, Arizona Center for Innovation stands as a pillar of innovation, empowering entrepreneurs to transform their ideas into thriving businesses, thus positively impacting the local and global entrepreneurial landscape.

Arizona Center for Innovation's Website
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3) Seed Spot

Seed Spot - supporting founders in their growth journey

SEED SPOT, an accelerator based in the USA, is dedicated to supporting impact-driven entrepreneurs who aim to address social problems. The Impact Accelerator is an eight-week virtual program, offering participants expert training, personalized coaching, and tools to enhance revenue growth and investment readiness. Benefits include tailored mentorship, pitch coaching, business leadership skills, and networking opportunities within a supportive community. Noteworthy alumni outcomes of SEED SPOT ventures encompass $399 million in revenue, $196 million in funding, and over 9,700 jobs created. Founded by Courtney Klein, SEED SPOT specializes in ventures with a social impact mission across various domains. Additional perks for participants include lifetime alumni benefits, a national network, and access to potential partners and investors. The accelerator is committed to empowering entrepreneurs to make a difference and achieve significant success in their ventures.

Seed Spot's Website
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SEED SPOT - accelerating exceptional start-ups in Arizona

SEED SPOT, founded by Courtney Klein, is an impact-focused accelerator in the USA that empowers entrepreneurs who are dedicated to addressing social challenges. The organization offers an intensive eight-week program aimed at fostering the growth of early-stage ventures, with the upcoming cohort scheduled to run from August 5 to September 27, 2024. SEED SPOT specifically nurtures impact-driven entrepreneurs driving positive change in areas like healthcare, education, sustainability, and community development on local, national, or global scales. Alumni from the program have collectively raised $196 million in funding, generated $399 million in revenue, and created 9,719 jobs over the past decade. Participants benefit from lifetime alumni perks, access to a national network of mentors and investors, specialized training, and support to enhance their investment readiness. The community provides a platform for engagement with potential partners, investors, and advisors. The accelerator's focus on Healthcare Tech and Edtech reflects its commitment to fostering ventures that make a meaningful impact on society, with the program's duration set at 12 weeks.

SEED SPOT's Website
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5) eSeed Challenge

eSeed Challenge - accelerating exceptional start-ups in Arizona

Arizona State University is a top-ranked research university in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area. The eSeed Challenge, part of ASU's Innovation Challenge program, aims to foster entrepreneurship and provide entrepreneurial experiences to students. It consists of three phases offering funding up to $6,000 to validate business model hypotheses. Selected teams can compete for admission into the eSeed Accelerator, with additional $5,000 funding. The eSeed Accelerator rewards twelve team founders with an all-expenses-paid innovation field trip. Full- or part-time ASU students can participate individually or in teams led by degree-seeking students, encouraging cross-departmental collaborations. The eSeed Challenge supports ventures across various fields without specifying domains. Notable founders like George Poste, Gregory Rodriguez, and Jeff Cunningham have emerged from the program. It also helps develop scalable business models, enhancing entrepreneurial experiences and networks, ultimately contributing to the ASU Innovation Open.

eSeed Challenge's Website
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6) Emerge (Accelerator)

Emerge (Accelerator) - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Arizona

The Emerge Accelerator, operated by the National Security Innovation Network (NSIN) in collaboration with the SoftBank Vision Fund and Speedinvest, strives to advance diversity in tech and entrepreneurship by supporting underrepresented founders. The accelerator's goal is to establish partnerships with universities to create dual-use ventures that address critical technology needs of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) as well as commercial markets. By facilitating connections between DoD mission partners and emerging technology teams from research universities, the program provides funding, mentorship, and networking opportunities. To qualify for the program, teams should have a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 4 or higher, specializing in areas such as artificial intelligence/machine learning, deep tech, autonomy, and cybersecurity. The 12-week program consists of virtual sessions, an in-person orientation week, and a final showcase event. Selected ventures have the chance to secure non-dilutive funding, and participants benefit from interactions with SoftBank professionals, industry experts, and VC networks. In essence, the Emerge Accelerator plays a vital role in promoting innovation and technology transfer by bridging academia, government, and industry to serve the interests of national security and business sectors. Notable alumni- Credrails, Shyft, Juli.

Emerge (Accelerator)'s Website
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7) Tech Launch Arizona

Tech Launch Arizona - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Arizona

Tech Launch Arizona (TLA) is an accelerator initiative affiliated with the University of Arizona, a public research university offering various degree programs. It aims to maximize the impact of university research, intellectual property (IP), and technological innovation by facilitating the movement of inventions into the marketplace, creating lasting social and economic effects. They have helped 130+ companies till date. The accelerator provides a comprehensive range of services, resources, and experienced mentors to assist UArizona inventors in launching startups based on their inventions. TLA has supported numerous start-ups, facilitated funding for UArizona spin-off companies, and collaborates with investors and industry partners for commercialization. They cover diverse domains such as technology, life sciences, and engineering, focusing on translating research innovations into practical applications. In addition to mentorship and resources, TLA celebrates inventors through events like World Intellectual Property Day, recognizing their patents. Notable figures involved with TLA include founders Benn Konsynski and Wendell Gibby. While TLA bridges academia and industry, fostering innovation, the AZ TechCelerator, another Arizona-based business incubator, focuses on technological ventures.

Tech Launch Arizona's Website
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8) University of Arizona - McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship

University of Arizona - McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship - supporting founders in their growth journey

The McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship stands out as a top-tier entrepreneurship hub with a mission to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset in students to drive societal progress. Through its New Venture Development Program, open to students from all fields, it guides participants in transforming early-stage ideas into viable ventures, with an impressive 29% of students eventually launching their startups. The center focuses on areas like New Venture Development, Social Innovation, and Small Business/Economic Development, collaborating with various local entities. It provides comprehensive entrepreneurship education for students at all levels, including undergraduates, MBA candidates, doctoral students, and community members. Additionally, it offers launch resources such as startup workspaces, legal assistance, and innovation events, contributing to the community's growth. The McGuire Center has earned accolades, ranking #6 for its public graduate entrepreneurship program and #8 for its undergraduate program. Founded by Benn Konsynski and Wendell Gibby, the center's commitment to fostering innovation and community collaboration cements its reputation as a global leader in entrepreneurship education.

University of Arizona - McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship's Website
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9) Black Dog Venture Partners

Black Dog Venture Partners - accelerating exceptional start-ups in Arizona

Black Dog Venture Partners is a business accelerator that provides venture capital consulting, corporate finance, and business development services to disruptive companies. The organization offers access to funding through a network of 13,000 investors and business development via 40,000 partners. Additionally, they provide sales/marketing and executive coaching services. The company hosts VC Fast Pitch Events, connecting startups with top investors. Founded by Scott Kelly, this institution specializes in domains not explicitly detailed on their website but focuses on supporting disruptive companies. They offer various benefits like mentorship, networking opportunities, and guidance on business scaling. Known for its valuable investor and business partner networks, Black Dog Venture Partners is a go-to resource for entrepreneurs seeking funding and business development support.

Black Dog Venture Partners's Website
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10) Seedscout

Seedscout - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Arizona

Seedscout is a professional network company founded in 2019 by Mat Sherman. The organization aims to help startups raise capital by connecting them with investors. The platform has assisted 1,067 startups in raising capital and has a network of over 800 investors actively seeking opportunities to meet founders. Seedscout allows startups to request introductions to investors, facilitating connections that can lead to successful funding rounds. It caters to a broad spectrum of startups globally. Testimonials attest to the platform's efficacy in helping founders secure pre-seed capital and expand their networks. Overall, it stands out as an accelerator platform that streamlines the fundraising process for founders, offering a valuable resource to those looking to raise capital and make meaningful investor connections. Notable alumni- Hyperwrite, Autio.

Seedscout's Website
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11) Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation

Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation - supporting founders in their growth journey

The Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation (CEI) in Phoenix is a business incubator that has been supporting entrepreneurs since 2013. It focuses on tech-based startups in industries such as biotech, healthcare tech, edtech, and general tech, playing a key role in fostering economic growth in the greater Phoenix area. CEI has supported over 80 startups, helping them create 764 jobs and generate $160 million in sales revenue. Additionally, its clients have raised over $117.5 million in private equity capital, grant funding, and awards. The accelerator provides business coaching, mentorship, access to resources, and community connections within the Phoenix startup ecosystem. Furthermore, the institution offers the CEI LabForce program for online training and certifications in workforce development. Notable for its support of startup commercialization in medical device, biotech, and renewable energy innovations, CEI is a vital player in Arizona's entrepreneurial landscape, providing valuable resources to empower entrepreneurs towards success.

Center for Entrepreneurial Innovation's Website
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12) Women's Innovation Fund Accelerator

Women's Innovation Fund Accelerator - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Arizona

The Women's Innovation Fund Accelerator (WIF AX) is a Seed/Series A Impact Fund that focuses on building underrepresented, sustainable, and emerging tech companies. They concentrate on various domains including Consumer Goods, Last-Mile Logistics, Blockchain, AI, Mixed Reality, and IoT. The accelerator invests in emerging technology-related companies with a Gender-Balanced C-Level Executive Team that can adopt Sustainable operations. Portfolio companies supported by WIF AX have a C-suite composed of at least 50% women and incorporate sustainability considerations in their operational plans. Their mission is to cultivate the next generation of entrepreneurs, investors, and the workforce. By maintaining a gender-balanced approach, they contribute to better revenues and a positive company culture. WIF AX provides Global Acceleration and Mentorship to its portfolio companies while employing Sustainable Practices. Additional benefits include acceleration, shared workspace, and business finance to expedite the growth of supported organizations. Founded by Barbara Bickham and Jessica Contreras, WIF AX promotes diversity, sustainability, and innovation in the tech industry, with a strong emphasis on gender balance and sustainable practices.

Women's Innovation Fund Accelerator's Website
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13) Skysong Innovations

Skysong Innovations - Arizona's true entrepreneurial hub

Skysong Innovations, the accelerator associated with Arizona State University (ASU), is an intellectual property management and technology transfer organization. They aim to rapidly disseminate ASU's discoveries and inventions into the marketplace. Established in 2003 as an Arizona Limited Liability company (formerly known as AzTE), Skysong Innovations has launched 180 start-ups. These start-ups have collectively created more than 1,100 local jobs and generated over $108 million in state revenue. The accelerator specializes in various sectors such as Information Technology, Software, Agriculture, and Healthcare. Testimonials from industry experts like Ross DeVol and Stuart Lindsay highlight ASU's strong tech transfer capabilities. Skysong fosters a collaborative environment for cutting-edge companies worldwide, with a focus on healthcare innovation and medical education transformation. Overall, it plays a pivotal role in ASU's innovation ecosystem. They drive innovation impact productivity and benefit the local community and marketplace.

Skysong Innovations's Website
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14) 5Lights Group

5Lights Group - building Arizona's entrepreneurial future

5Lights Group partners with innovators to create iconic companies, embodying a hands-on approach and a true partnership philosophy. With a focus on sustained growth and value creation, they emphasize five vital factors ('five lights') that unlock a company's potential. Specializing in transforming great ideas into fast-growing ventures that make a positive impact, the organization collaborates closely with growth companies, offering fee-based, equity-based, or hybrid engagements for capital strategy and exit planning. Embracing new inventions and discoveries, They extensively work with university researchers to commercialize unique opportunities. The accelerator boasts an experienced team including entrepreneurs, data scientists, and domain experts, with Sherry Hoskinson, recognized for her leadership in university entrepreneurship for over two decades. The company distinguishes itself by actively collaborating with partners, seeking those with a compelling advantage in products, services, or technology. Founded by Charlie Horn, the accelerator positions itself not as Angels or Sharks, but as genuine partners fostering the growth of standout companies.

5Lights Group's Website
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15) AZ Disruptors

AZ Disruptors - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

AZ Disruptors is an investment firm located in Arizona, focusing on for-profit companies dedicated to creating a positive impact. The accelerator invests in companies at different stages of development: Early Stage Startups, Product and Early Customer Success companies, and Proven Record, Ready for Scale enterprises. Early stage companies with innovative product ideas and prototypes can receive investments ranging from $100,000 to $500,000 annually. They also support companies that have demonstrated success with early customers by providing around $100,000 per company for up to 5 firms per year. Additionally, AZ Disruptors invest in up to 4 companies annually that have shown revenue growth and are ready for rapid scale, offering approximately $250,000 per company. The accelerator specializes in industries like Software, Hardware, and Biotech within the Arizona tech ecosystem. Startups accepted into the program benefit from funding, mentorship, and resources to boost their growth and success.

AZ Disruptors's Website
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16) Yoo & Co Accelerator

Yoo & Co Accelerator - connecting start-up founders with success

Yoo & Co accelerator is designed for those driven to pave their own path by bringing transformative products and services to market, focusing on ventures in healthcare and life sciences. Led by founder Chris Yoo, it offers targeted support to startups in health-related fields. The accelerator provides resources essential for establishing a strong foundation for rapid scaling, including access to legal, operational, sales, and marketing advisors, along with a network of dedicated investors. The program aims to create a supportive ecosystem fostering growth, mentorship, and timely intervention for entrepreneurs looking to make a significant impact in the industry.

Yoo & Co Accelerator's Website
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Top Reasons Start-ups Participate In Accelerators

Holistic growth

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

Rapid learning curve

There’s a reason accelerators are called accelerators. It’s a fast ride.

Peer learning

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

Business management skills

Reaching the top is relatively easy. Staying there for years is difficult.

Why an accelerator might not be right for you

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

It isn't about the exits

Accelerators and investors care much more about getting a return rather than building a business. However that's not a luxury founders can afford.

Correlation isn't causation

What worked for Airbnb might not work for you. If the accelerator playbook was 100% full-proof, they would have been running a start-up and not an accelerator. After all, everyone's chasing a unicorn.

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?

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 5/30/2024

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Accelerators and Incubators in arizona

Looking for the best accelerators in Arizona to kickstart your startup journey? Here are some top reasons to consider joining an accelerator in the state. Accelerators provide invaluable mentorship from industry experts, access to a vast network of investors and potential partners, and resources to help scale your business quickly. By choosing an accelerator, you can leverage the vibrant start-up culture in Arizona and connect with like-minded entrepreneurs who are driven to succeed. When selecting the right accelerator for your startup, it's essential to consider factors such as the program focus, mentorship opportunities, funding options, and success stories of previous participants. Be sure to research each accelerator thoroughly to find the one that aligns best with your goals and vision for your startup. Arizona's accelerators offer a diverse range of programs tailored to different industries and stages of growth, ensuring that you find the perfect fit for your startup's needs. Some notable start-ups from Arizona that have thrived after participating in accelerators include Tuft & Needle, Carvana, and WebPT. These success stories serve as inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs looking to make their mark in the start-up ecosystem of Arizona. Joining an accelerator in Arizona can provide you with the tools, resources, and support needed to turn your start-up dream into a reality.

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