Discover Connecticut's best accelerators for your start-up

Choose an accelerator/incubator that provides your start-up with the right guidance to scale with confidence.

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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?

Domain expertise > Funding amount

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.

Connecticut's Top Accelerators By Neighborhoods

Comparing Accelerators

NameAerial ScoreAddress#Investments#ExitsDetails
STANLEY +Techstars AI in Advanced Manufacturing9.9Connecticut, USA34475Learn more
Yale Office of Cooperative Research4.6160 St Ronan St, New Haven, CT 06511, USA131Learn more
University of Connecticut Technology Incubation Program4.51392 Storrs Rd #4213, Storrs, CT 06269, USA2Learn more
Accelerate UConn4.5Henry Ruthven Monteith Bldg, 341 Mansfield Rd, Storrs, CT 06269, USA2Learn more
UConn TIP4.51392 Storrs Rd #4213, Storrs, CT 06269, USA2Learn more
CTNext4.5120 Huyshope Ave, Hartford, CT 06106, USA111Learn more
Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology4.5222 Pitkin St STE 101, East Hartford, CT 06108, USA1Learn more
4Catalyzer4.5530 Old Whitfield St, Guilford, CT 06437, USA43Learn more
FirstXFounder3.4Connecticut, USALearn more
Masheen2.4Connecticut, USALearn more
Innovation to Impact2.2Connecticut, USALearn more
The Refinery CT2.1Connecticut, USALearn more

This page covers the top accelerators and incubators in Connecticut.

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) STANLEY +Techstars AI in Advanced Manufacturing

STANLEY +Techstars AI in Advanced Manufacturing - Connecticut's true entrepreneurial hub

STANLEY +Techstars AI in Advanced Manufacturing is a collaborative program between Stanley Black & Decker and Techstars. They focus on fostering innovation in advanced manufacturing, particularly in the realm of artificial intelligence (AI). The accelerator selected ten startups for the 2021 cohort, representing locations across the United States and globally. These startups collaborate with Stanley Black & Decker to impact Industry 4.0, aligning with the program's three categories: Intelligent Factory as a Service. Notable startups in this category include Eduro.ai, MODICA Microindustries, and Slytek. The program is led by key people like Brad Feld, Chisa Egbelu, Daniel Mason, David Brown, David Cohen, and Jared Polis. It kicked off in January and concluded with demo and investor days in late April, lasting for 12 weeks. The accelerator provides mentorship, resources, and networking opportunities to drive innovation, with an extended pool of mentors compensating for the lack of in-person interactions in the virtual 2021 program, ensuring safety during the pandemic. Industries supported include Artificial Intelligence and Fintech.

STANLEY +Techstars AI in Advanced Manufacturing's Website
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2) Yale Office of Cooperative Research

Yale Office of Cooperative Research - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Connecticut

Yale Ventures, operated by the Yale Office of Cooperative Research (OCR), serves as a vital bridge between academic research at Yale University and entrepreneurial ventures. This initiative focuses on translating innovative academic research into impactful products and services that address global challenges. The accelerator actively nurtures early-stage technology companies spanning diverse domains, benefiting from Yale's rich research expertise. OCR collaborates with industry partners to facilitate corporate strategy development and foster industry collaborations. The accelerator primarily emphasizes technology transfer and commercialization, which involves licensing intellectual property developed at Yale. Yale OCR's support extends to innovators from various fields like medicine, engineering, and social sciences, offering mentorship connections, funding opportunities, and access to innovation centers. The accelerator champions Yale's innovation ecosystem, safeguarding and licensing intellectual property while enabling innovations to reach the market. Yale OCR's impact is evident in the tangible benefits it provides to Yale innovators and society at large. Notable founders associated with Yale Office of Cooperative Research include Abraham Pierson, Israel Chauncy, James Noyes II, James Pierpont, Joseph Webb, Noadiah Russell, Samuel Andrew, Samuel Mather, Thomas Buckingham, and Timothy Woodbridge.

Yale Office of Cooperative Research's Website
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3) University of Connecticut Technology Incubation Program

University of Connecticut Technology Incubation Program - accelerating exceptional start-ups in Connecticut

The University of Connecticut Technology Incubation Program (TIP) is a dynamic initiative supporting high-tech startups and spin-offs since 2003. It aims to launch market-transforming startups by leveraging UConn's research resources, facilities, and business support services combined with a network of investors and entrepreneurs. With 35,500 square feet of office and lab space available across multiple UConn campuses, startups benefit from instrumentation, research services, and collaboration with scientific experts. TIP-associated startups have collectively raised $1.1 billion in funding, with $183 million secured in the 2022 Fiscal Year. The program's specialization spans high-tech and data science startups, with a recent expansion to Stamford for data science startups. Founded by Faquir Jain, TIP offers a collaborative environment, access to UConn's talent pool, and world-class R&D capacity, making it a crucial player in Connecticut's entrepreneurial ecosystem catering to industries such as Edtech and General Tech.

University of Connecticut Technology Incubation Program's Website
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4) Accelerate UConn

Accelerate UConn - Connecticut's true entrepreneurial hub

Accelerate UConn, affiliated with the University of Connecticut, operates as the institution's National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Program. The accelerator aims to catalyze entrepreneurial teams with technology concepts suitable for commercialization, assisting in the transition of ideas, devices, and scientific discoveries into the market. The main program, Propelus, provides hands-on training in venture creation, offering personalized coaching, and focusing on evidence-based business models and market strategies. Themes such as Quantum/Photonics are featured in specific programs. Alumni include- SignAssist, InfinEnergie. Funded start-ups associated with Accelerate UConn receive financial support. Specializing in various technology domains, the organization supports interdisciplinary innovations. Founded by Faquir Jain, the accelerator offers benefits including training in Business Model Canvas and Customer Discovery, individualized coaching, networking with industry experts, and up to $3,000 in funding for product development.

Accelerate UConn's Website
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5) UConn TIP

UConn TIP - supporting Connecticut's best founders

UConn Technology Incubation Program (TIP) operates under the University of Connecticut's Office of the Vice President for Research. The program fosters breakthrough research and cutting-edge innovation by supporting over 45 startups dedicated to developing and commercializing new technologies in various domains. These startups have collectively raised an impressive $1.1 billion in funding since 2003, with $183 million secured in 2022 alone. UConn TIP offers access to 35,500 sq ft of office and lab space, creating a collaborative entrepreneurial environment that leverages the institution's research resources for R&D operations. Focused on Edtech and General Tech industries, the program connects startups with experienced investors to facilitate connections and provide ongoing support. Notable founder Faquir Jain has played a key role in the program's success, which has proven pivotal in launching startups and driving innovation across the board.

UConn TIP's Website
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6) CTNext

CTNext - Connecticut's true entrepreneurial hub

CTNext is a public-private partnership that fosters an agile, open, and networked entrepreneurship community in Connecticut. An offshoot of Connecticut Innovations, the organization founded the Accelerator for Biosciences in Connecticut (ABCT) in 2017 in Branford. The six-month program targets healthcare innovation, accepting two cohorts with 12 ventures each. The startups undergo rigorous entrepreneurship education, personalized mentorship, and networking to enhance team strength and fundability. Specializing in biotech, pharmaceuticals, and more, ABCT drives economic growth by supporting bioscience ventures. The program's success is evidenced by the sister program, ELabNYC, which graduated 116 ventures in New York City, with 72% securing funding and 25% starting second businesses. ELabNYC's graduates have filed 150 patents, creating 210 new jobs and earning $16.8 million in annual wages. While specific perks are not detailed, ABCT likely provides mentorship, access to experts, and networking opportunities for startups in Connecticut.

CTNext's Website
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7) Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology

Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology - enabling start-ups to fundraise successfully

The Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology (CCAT) is a renowned applied technology demonstration and training center. It is focused on driving innovation in advanced manufacturing, applied technologies, and energy solutions. The organization offers workforce training and education to empower individuals with cutting-edge skills. Recently, CCAT launched the Talent & Training (TnT) Accelerator, housing the Digital Thread Lab (DTL) in partnership with the Department of Defenses Office of Industrial Base Policy. The TnT Accelerator aims to equip manufacturers with hands-on technical training to optimize data-driven digital capabilities, enhancing production efficiency and responsiveness to commercial and Department of Defense needs. Prominent partners include- Microsoft, ABB, Navy and more. CCAT collaborates with key industry players to expedite the introduction of innovative products to the market, fostering engineering and manufacturing advancement. The organization's commitment to technology-driven solutions cements its position as a crucial facilitator of industry growth and progressive innovation.

Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology's Website
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8) 4Catalyzer

4Catalyzer - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

4Catalyzer is a startup accelerator founded by Jonathan M Rothberg, operating at the intersection of medicine, engineering, and artificial intelligence to make medical technologies and life science tools affordable and accessible worldwide. The organization focuses on healthcare technology, life science tools, and AI companies, incubating and accelerating startups committed to societal impact. Some notable companies under their portfolio include Butterfly Network known for the Butterfly iQ ultrasound device, Quantum-Si specializing in protein sequencing, and Hyperfine with the first point-of-care MRI machine. Other companies part of their portfolio are Tesseract Health, Liminal Sciences, Detect, AI Therapeutics, and Protein Evolution. 4Catalyzer offers ongoing support, mentorship, resources, and financial backing to startups, providing them with the opportunity to explore developments in physics, math, and life sciences. With a mission to transform medicine through smart devices, micro-fabricated devices, deep learning, and cloud computing, the organization aims to create positive change in the medical technology landscape.

4Catalyzer's Website
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9) FirstXFounder

FirstXFounder - a modern, innovative hub for start-ups in Connecticut

FirstXFounder is an accelerator program designed to support first-time founders in the life sciences sector. It offers personalized entrepreneurial education, mentorship, and resources. The accelerator operates in the Metro New York area, with programs such as ABCT, a six-month initiative in Connecticut focusing on healthcare innovation, and the Westchester County Biosciences Accelerator in New York. ELabNYC, established in 2012, has 155 venture alumni covering various life sciences domains and offering Master Classes for program graduates. Ventures from ELabNYC have raised over $800 million since 2013. The Next Milestone program, initiated by SUNY Downstate, supports small founder-led teams in achieving key milestones, resulting in 191 jobs and $1.3 billion. Participants in FirstXFounder receive guidance from experienced coaches and mentors, with the curriculum provided by the expert entrepreneurial advisory firm. With a focus on innovation and community growth, the organization plays a crucial role in nurturing emerging startups in the biosciences sector. Notable alumni include- Kriash, Esophadex; along with partners like Pfizer and Atostek

FirstXFounder's Website
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10) Masheen

Masheen - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Connecticut

Masheen is a venture builder focused on developing and scaling businesses in collaboration with founders. They offer a full-service model that includes creating a minimum viable product (MVP) and validating it with beta customers, going beyond traditional accelerators by actively participating in product development. Specializing in disruptive AI-driven software solutions, the company's investment thesis encompasses IoT, Edtech, Healthcare Analytics, Ad Tech, and Impact Investing. The accelerator provides hands-on support in engineering, strategy, and product management while emphasizing a high-performance culture for rapid execution. Masheen operates in industries such as Healthcare Tech, Edtech, General Tech, and SaaS, targeting AI-driven solutions to ensure a focused approach. With a family-run and family-owned structure, they build strong relationships with portfolio partners and invest their resources and expertise alongside founders in exchange for ownership. While the exact number of start-ups associated, investors, funded start-ups, and program duration are undisclosed, Masheen's unique fusion of investment, active involvement, and AI technology focus sets them apart in the start-up ecosystem.

Masheen's Website
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11) Innovation to Impact

Innovation to Impact - enabling start-ups to fundraise successfully

The Innovation to Impact Accelerator, an initiative by Apple under the Racial Equity and Justice Initiative, focuses on advancing environmental innovation. It specifically supports 12 Black-, Hispanic/Latinx-, and Indigenous-owned environmental solution and service providers. The third cohort includes companies like COI Energy, Elite Energy Distribution, and SEEL, offering solutions in Climate Change, Resources, and Smarter Chemistry domains. The program spans 12 weeks and provides trainings, coaching, mentorship, and access to Apple experts. Alumni benefit from ongoing support and networking opportunities. Notable startups that have been part of the accelerator include GridChain, eSmart Recycling, and TSP Solutions. Participants also stand a chance to engage in business opportunities with Apple as it pursues carbon neutrality in its manufacturing supply chain by 2030. This accelerator reflects Apple's dedication to environmental sustainability and fostering diversity in the Environmental Tech and Clean Energy sectors.

Innovation to Impact's Website
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12) The Refinery CT

The Refinery CT - promoting the start-ups of tomorrow

The Refinery CT is an early-stage accelerator program focused on supporting innovative women-led ventures to become scalable and investible businesses. The organization has mentored 39 companies with the help of 90+ subject expert mentors, resulting in over $80 million raised in funds. Through unique pitch competitions, they discovered more than 250 women-led tech companies and awarded $260,000+ in non-dilutive grants. The mission of the accelerator has evolved to not only accelerate women-led tech companies but also enhance the sustainability and impact of various entrepreneur support organizations. Specializing in women-led tech companies, The Refinery builds mentor networks, provides entrepreneurship education, and offers coaching, mentorship, and advisory services. They provide connections to 80+ mentors, advisors, and investors, along with a Winter Boost program featuring webinars on Sales & Marketing, Leadership & Team Building, and Raising Capital. Founded by Janis Collins and Jennifer Gabler, the organization operates in the General Tech industry and runs a 12-week program designed to fuel innovation and entrepreneurship.

The Refinery CT'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.

Peer learning

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

Rapid learning curve

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

Critical Industry connections

A good connection at an FMCG/AI giant can help you 10x more than connecting with 100 retailers.

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.

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?

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.

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 5/31/2024

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Accelerators and Incubators in connecticut

Looking for the best accelerators in Connecticut? Here are some top reasons to choose an accelerator in the state - access to mentorship, networking opportunities, and resources to help your startup grow. Connecticut boasts a vibrant start-up culture with a strong emphasis on innovation and entrepreneurship. Consider factors such as the accelerator's track record, industry focus, and the support they offer to their portfolio companies when selecting the right accelerator for your start-up. Some notable start-ups from Connecticut that have seen success include Priceline, CaroGen Corporation, and FuelCell Energy. These companies have thrived in the state's supportive start-up ecosystem, showcasing the potential for growth and success for start-ups in Connecticut's accelerators.

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