7 Tips for Standing Out in Your Start Co. Accelerator Application

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Each year we release our applications for our highly competitive accelerator programs. With this post I wanted to tell how you can stand out over others during application screening.

Here are 7 tips for standing out in your application to our accelerator programs at Start Co.  Be sure to apply and learn more here: apply

  1. Teamwork makes the dreamwork

The #1 factor of success for a startup company is the team. So at Start Co. we want to see that you have a strong founding team. We want to know that your talents and skills complement each other and you can work together. Do you have the technical ability to build something?  Founding a company is not easy and you need great teammates.

  1. Amaze us!

We receive 100s of applications, so make yourself stand out! Tell us how you’ve overcome big problems in the past and what things you have loved doing. Show us why we should offer you a spot in our next cohort. We value diversity and focus on inclusion — help us understand why you are different.

  1. Build great relationships

Recommendations spark our interest and instantly catapult you forward. A strong reference from a member of the Start Co. network, perhaps a mentor or a founder from a previous accelerator, will definitely help you.  Hustling to get an awesome recommendation is a great indicator of the drive and resourcefulness we want in our accelerators.

  1. Tell us what you’ve learned

We love to see teams that have been out there working hard to get customers, even if you’ve failed. We want to see that you’re willing to iterate and adapt quickly. Tell us what you’ve learned. What have you tried and failed at? What do you know now about your customers that you didn’t know before?

  1. Tell us about your competitive advantage or unique perspective

We’ve seen countless startups in the past. It’s execution and not the idea that counts. Nonetheless we want to know you’ve spent time thinking through how you can beat out the competition. Tell us how you are better and how you’re different.  How are you better than all the other startups trying to solve the same problem?

  1. Do your homework

Know what kind of companies have gone through our accelerators before.  Not sure if you are a fit? Email us at info@neverstop.co and we can help you determine.

  1. Turn it in!

Remember that the application is only first step of many towards getting into our program.  Don’t get hung up on perfection to the point you don’t submit something.  Just click submit and do it by March 20th.  And if you happen to turn it in sooner, that will just give us more time to look over and make special note of your application.

 

Again, here is the link to apply: https://www.f6s.com/startco.2018accelerator/apply

 

Start Co. announces winners of Virtual Pitch Competition

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We are excited to announce that we have the winners of our 2017 Virtual Pitch Competition! We want to thank all of our participants for submitting their great ideas.

As a reminder, the judging criteria: Applicants must submit a 90-second video sharing their startup idea using the following guidelines:

  • Introduce your team
  • Describe your tech product/service
  • Tell us about your customer and the problem you’re solving for them
  • Explain how your product works to solve that problem
  • Tell us where you are in the process
  • Make a realistic ask
  • Passion and enthusiasm count

1st Place Fly with Freya https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-0i90yipSI&feature=youtu.be

Prize: $1,000 cash

             1 hour meeting with Eric Mathews, CEO of Start Co.

             Finalist in the Start Co. Accelerator applications

             Promotion via our social networks

Most Creative Pitch Clu https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-1hdGNXWIY&feature=youtu.be

Prize: $200 Amex Gift Card

Solving the Biggest ProblemSage Robotics https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=maXEbHKaqac&feature=youtu.be

Prize: $150 Facebook Ad Credits

Strongest TeamTiqueSeek https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hm5WxNknHgk&feature=youtu.be

Prize: $100 Facebook Ad Credits

Most Enthusiastic PresentationCold

Zones https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gC_qZscI5WE&feature=youtu.be

Prize: $50 Starbucks Gift Card

 

Thank you to all of the startups that shared their ideas with us. #neverstop

News Release on Seed Hatchery’s Boosterville

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Boosterville Receives $830K Investment to “Boost” Offers and Loyalty Platform Growth

ZIONSVILLE, IN  —  Boosterville, an award-winning, offers and loyalty platform that seamlessly connects merchants with cause-driven buyers, announces the completion of the company’s seed round of funding.  The round, which will be used to accelerate the rollout of the platform to new markets, totaled $830,000 and was co-led by 316 Investments and VisionTech Angels with a matching investment from Elevate Ventures.

Greg Willman, co-founder and CEO of 316 Investments who will be joining the Board of Directors, stated, “Our excitement for Boosterville stems from our long history in the retail space and understanding of the innovative marketing solution that Boosterville brings to merchants who want to support non-profit groups in their communities as well as grow their customer base.”

Boosterville works with all existing payment card processing and POS systems with no new hardware, integrations or training required.  An immediate text message at the time of purchase notifies the buyer of the merchant’s contribution to their selected non-profit, resulting in increased engagement and loyalty for platform merchants.

Ben Pidgeon, executive director of VisionTech Angels, said, “Merchants have long been challenged by measuring return on investment of local marketing dollars spent. Boosterville has developed an elegant, yet powerful solution for businesses to engage with customers in supporting local causes, help local groups raise funds they need to be successful, and in the process, build a more loyal customer base. VisionTech Angels is pleased to have Boosterville as our first investment of 2017.”

Boosterville CEO Pam Cooper stated, “We’ve seen great interest this last year and are thrilled to have these leading retail and technology experts join our team. We’re excited that they recognize the value of our technology and the tremendous opportunity to help the millions of merchants across the country increase their revenues while enhancing their relationship with their local community and non-profits.”  Cooper added, “It’s wonderful to join the rising tide of Indiana’s tech startup community and prove that founders don’t need to leave the state to secure angel investment or talent for their growing companies.”

During 2016, Boosterville established a technology partnership with one of the world’s largest credit card networks, secured agreements with national non-profit and faith-based organizations, was selected for Facebook’s FbStart program, and visited with now-Governor Eric Holcomb to introduce Boosterville and discuss fostering entrepreneurial growth in Indiana.  Most importantly, Boosterville received overwhelmingly positive response during a pilot program in Zionsville after months of testing by local development partner merchants: WB Pizza, Cobblestone Grill, and JiffyLube of Indiana.
Prior to launching from Zionsville’s entrepreneurial and coworking center zWORKS, Boosterville graduated from two tech accelerators — the SeedHatchery in Memphis, TN and Prosper Women Entrepreneurs in St. Louis, MO.  The company is currently operating in previously vacant commercial space owned by the Town of Zionsville.

About Boosterville

Boosterville is an offers and loyalty platform that seamlessly connects merchants with cause-driven buyers to raise funds for their favorite non-profits simply by using their credit card.  The company was founded by successful serial entrepreneur Pam Cooper and husband Tom Cooper, a visionary data security and integrations expert who was founding CTO for several high growth companies.

Boosterville’s platform converts charitable donation requests into increased revenue for participating merchants, acquires and retains new customers, provides multi-channel communications loop between merchants, non-profits and cause-driven buyers, and delivers a new funding source for school-based organizations and other non-profits.

About 316 Investments

316 Investments is a group of private investment companies focused on early stage opportunities with high potential companies with strong leadership/management. Our investments center on industries and niches where we have expertise, including food and beverage, medical, consumer products, engineered solutions, manufacturing, real estate, entertainment/publishing, and technology.

About VisionTech Partners I VisionTech Angels

Founded in 2008, VisionTech Partners is a privately held company focused on linking investors to high-potential early-stage companies. Headquartered in Indianapolis, one of the nation’s most vibrant innovation regions, VisionTech is where inventors, entrepreneurs, investors, universities, and strategic partners convene to share, fund, and launch innovative technologies. VisionTech Angels has chapters in Bloomington, Fort Wayne, Indianapolis, Lafayette, and an Affinity chapter, AngelBom.

Contact: Pam Cooper (317) 446-9177 or Andy Weixler (317) 324-8004

10 Reasons to Join the Party in the CLOUD!

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10 Reasons to party in the CLOUD at the Memphis Public Library:
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The Memphis Library Foundation is hosting their annual event, Party in the CLOUD, in their teen room on Saturday, November 5th at 7pm! Here are the 10 reasons why you should definitely make an appearance:

1). Get lost in virtual reality games!
2). Join a photo shoot in the video lab!
3). Paint your own wine or beer glasses!
4). Dance & Groove to the awesome DJ!
5). Play old-school video games!
6). Watch 3D printing in the makerspace!
7). Sip on craft beer and wine!
8). Enjoy tastings from local restaurants!
9). Hang out with Ralph Cahoun in the audio lab!
10). Watch SEC football on the big screen!

They will have door prizes and more! Get your tickets here! Tickets are $50 per person until October 28th, then they go up to $65 per person after that date! If you are interested in purchasing more than one ticket contact Shelley Thomas at sthomas@memphislibraryfoundation.org.

If you’d like to donate to the Memphis Library Foundation, click here.

Hope to see you all there!

AgLaunch Virtual Pitch Competition

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AgLaunch Virtual Pitch Competition
We’re opening up the opportunity for any ag entrepreneur to upload a pitch video and win some cash! All pitches will be reviewed by the experts at Ag Innovation Development Group and our accelerator partners at Start Co.

The Prize:
Winner of the pitch competition will receive $1,000. Second place gets $500. Both will have an opportunity for an extended pitch and feedback session with a panel of investors, farmers, corporates, and entrepreneurs.

Guidelines:
Generally follow content outlined in Start Co.’s template
Do your best in under 5 minutes (if you are over you will be disqualified).
Relate to in-field agriculture, agricultural supply chain, food safety & integrity, livestock production, dairy production, or food supply chain.
Be submitted by 6pm EST on October 27th, 2016.

What You Have to Do:
Upload your video on the F6S application page.
Fill out the short associated application.
There is no cost to you.
Winners will be announced by November 1st, 2016.
We look forward to hearing about your innovation! Contact Rebekah Veldhuizen if you have any questions.

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