Scale your growth with Maine's best accelerators & incubators

Discover the Behind The Scenes of how everyday start-ups grow into unicorns.

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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

Do they know why they succeeded in the past?

Strategic depth in their thinking

Mentor quality over quantity

Do they really value your time?

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.

Maine's Top Accelerators By Neighborhoods

Comparing Accelerators

NameAerial ScoreStandard DealAddress#Investments#ExitsDetails
Maine Technology Institute5.18 Venture Ave, Brunswick, ME 04011, USA1716Learn more
Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development4.568 Commercial St Building C, Portland, ME 04101, USALearn more
Maine Center for Enterpreneurial Development4.568 Commercial St Building C, Portland, ME 04101, USALearn more
Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center4.4193 Clarks Cove Rd, Walpole, ME 04573, USALearn more
E2Tech4.3Think Tank Coworking, 40 Main St, Biddeford, ME 04005, USALearn more
MAN Impact Accelerator4.3Maine, USALearn more
Scratchpad accelerator2.1$5MMaine, USALearn more

This page covers the top accelerators and incubators in Maine.

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) Maine Technology Institute

Maine Technology Institute - supporting Maine's best founders

Maine Technology Institute is a key player in supporting Maine's innovation economy by offering grants, loans, equity investments, and services to businesses, organizations, and entrepreneurs. Since its establishment in 1999, they have invested over $365 million in nearly 3,800 distinct projects across Maine's 16 counties. The accelerator programs supported by the institution include Entrepreneurship for All (EforAll), focusing on underrepresented entrepreneurs, Blue w(AI)ve Accelerator for blue tech startups, and Scratchpad Accelerator, a 13-week program in Bangor, Maine, for scalable companies. Their specialization domains cover technology, innovation, and the blue economy. Additionally, Maine Technology Institute provides guidance for SBIR/STTR federal funding applications, access to consulting through the MERC Program, and facilitates funding opportunities through the Maine Funding Network. Some of the industries they cater to include Artificial Intelligence, Edtech, Biotech, and Agriculture Tech. Notable founders and startups have benefited from their programs, contributing to innovation, economic growth, and collaboration in Maine's entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Maine Technology Institute's Website
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2) Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development

Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development - building Maine's entrepreneurial future

The Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development is a private non-profit organization founded in 1997 with a mission to empower and enable Maine's most promising entrepreneurs to grow through innovation. It operates multiple accelerator programs including the selective Top Gun Program aimed at accelerating business growth. Specialized accelerator programs like Cultivator and MarketShare Accel target food and beverage companies, while the BioStartup Program caters to biotech and healthcare startups. The Visionary Leadership Program is designed for emerging business leaders, the Compass Program supports outdoor industry entrepreneurs, and FoodTech Maine focuses on food technology solutions. The organization relies on experienced staff, volunteer mentors, and board members to support ambitious companies in Maine across industries such as Biotech and Food and Beverage. MCED strives to be a valuable resource for entrepreneurs at all stages of their business journey.

Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development's Website
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3) Maine Center for Enterpreneurial Development

Maine Center for Enterpreneurial Development - supporting founders in their growth journey

The Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development is a private non-profit organization founded in 1997. It is dedicated to empowering and enabling Maine's most promising entrepreneurs. The organization offers various programs, including the selective Top Gun Program for startup and early-stage businesses, the Cultivator Food, Beverage & Agriculture Accelerator for established companies looking to scale up, and the MarketShare Accel aiding food and beverage companies in accessing new markets. MCED specializes in domains such as Food and Beverage, Biotech, Digital Health, Life Sciences, Medical Devices, and the Outdoor Industry. It supports entrepreneurs through initiatives like the BioStartup Program, Compass Program, and FoodTech Maine. Additional benefits include mentoring, networking opportunities, the Visionary Leadership Program, and a focus on inclusion and diversity. With a commitment to supporting local businesses, the institution serves as a vital connector in Maine's entrepreneurial ecosystem. Key individuals involved in the organization include entrepreneurs, industry experts, and advisors. Notable alumni or startups associated with MCED have made significant strides in industries such as Biotech, Healthcare Tech, and Food and Beverage.

Maine Center for Enterpreneurial Development's Website
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4) Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center

Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center - a prominent start-up growth supporter in Maine

Established in 1988 by the Maine Legislature, Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center focuses on developing economically and environmentally sustainable aquaculture opportunities in Maine. The organization sponsors innovative research projects related to food, pharmaceuticals, and other aquatic products while investing in enhancing aquaculture capacity in the region. It also serves as an educational resource to promote public acceptance of aquaculture, encouraging strategic alliances for research and technology transfer. Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center is actively engaged in various research initiatives such as GIS for shellfish site selection, market research on seaweed products, and sea scallop culture. Additionally, they manage two business incubator facilities, Darling Marine Center (DMC) and the Center for Cooperative Aquaculture Research (CCAR), providing support to entrepreneurs in testing new methods and products. Committed to education, the organization collaborates on fisheries retraining projects and hosts the biennial Northeast Aquaculture Conference & Exposition. Overall, Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center contributes significantly to Maine's aquaculture sector through its focus on innovation, entrepreneurship support, and sustainable practices.

Maine Aquaculture Innovation Center's Website
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5) E2Tech

E2Tech - supporting Maine's best founders

E2Tech, formerly known as the Environmental & Energy Technology Council of Maine (E2Tech), plays a crucial role as an accelerator dedicated to advancing Maine's environmental, energy, and clean technology sectors. The organization acts as a catalyst by creating networking opportunities, sharing objective information, and fostering growth in these important industries. Supported by the Maine Technology Institute, E2Tech focuses on fostering innovation and collaboration in areas like Renewable Energy, Environmental Tech, and Clean Energy. The accelerator provides a range of valuable benefits to participants, functioning as a hub for information and a facilitator of networking opportunities. Key figures within the institution include the founders and program directors, who drive the success of E2Tech. Several notable start-ups have already reaped the benefits of the program, demonstrating its effectiveness in supporting and promoting growth within the environmental and energy technology sectors.

E2Tech's Website
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6) MAN Impact Accelerator

MAN Impact Accelerator - enabling start-ups to fundraise successfully

The program designed to scale social ventures in transport and logistics is spread across 8 months and 4 cities - Munich, São Paulo, Lisbon, and Johannesburg. It aims to bring together social entrepreneurs from Europe, Brazil, and Africa to address social and environmental challenges in the industry. Founded on the principles of creating tangible and measurable impact, the accelerator seeks startups with a focus on transport, logistics, and mobility. Participants gain access to a network of 300+ mentors, including experts from MAN Truck & Bus, Amazon, Google, and Uber, as well as engagement with impact investors. The accelerator looks for founding teams with industry expertise and diverse skill sets. Key areas of focus include IoT, Data Analytics, Digital Health, and Last-mile connection. The program ran from November 2019 to June 2020. The initiative not only supports startups but also contributes to empowering social entrepreneurs and driving positive change in the transport and logistics sector.

MAN Impact Accelerator's Website
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7) Scratchpad accelerator

Scratchpad accelerator - supporting Maine's best founders

Scratchpad Accelerator is a seed accelerator specifically designed to support scalable companies in the food industry, with a particular focus on developing and selling value-added food products. Since 2015, it has been offering a custom-designed curriculum, mentorship, networking opportunities, and commercialization assistance to growth-oriented companies looking to expand nationally or internationally, especially those seeking external equity. The accelerator plays a crucial role in nurturing companies across various sectors like agriculture, aquaculture, value-added food, and food-related technology. Scratchpad companies have collectively raised over $5 million in funding. It prioritizes food industry start-ups and enhances growth opportunities for female-founded companies by providing full-time support. Additionally, Scratchpad fosters a vibrant mentor network, increasing visibility among investors to aid participating companies in scaling quickly. Overall, it serves as a vital platform for food-related start-ups, offering essential resources to thrive and make a global impact.

Scratchpad accelerator's Website
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Top Reasons Start-ups Participate In Accelerators

Critical Industry connections

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

Business management skills

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

Accelerator brand power

Like Ivy-League credentials, your start-up’s story benefits from an accelerators’ brand.

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

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?

Rome wasn't built in 12-16 weeks

Every business needs a strong foundation, but while some businesses can figure the basics in 3 months, others need > 1 year.

One-size fits all model

Most accelerators don't focus on a specific niche, which may not be very helpful if you are looking for domain expertise.

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 maine

Looking for the best accelerators in Maine? Here are some top reasons to choose an accelerator in the state. Accelerators provide invaluable resources and mentorship to help your start-up grow and succeed. They also offer networking opportunities with other entrepreneurs and investors, helping you to build a strong support system for your business. The start-up culture in Maine is vibrant and supportive, with a strong focus on innovation and collaboration. Choosing the right accelerator can make all the difference in the success of your start-up. When considering which accelerator to join, some key factors to consider include the industry focus of the accelerator, the level of mentorship and support offered, and the success stories of previous start-ups that have gone through the program. For those looking for inspiration, here are a few notable start-ups from Maine that have succeeded well. These include companies such as Wex, a financial technology company that has experienced significant growth and success. Another success story is Certify, a leading provider of expense management software. These companies serve as examples of the thriving start-up ecosystem in Maine and the potential for success that accelerators in the state can offer. Keep these factors in mind as you explore the best accelerators in Maine and find the perfect fit for your start-up.

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