When you begin a startup, it can be difficult to figure out the best way to go. Should you begin with funding? Maybe create a product first? What about a game plan? That’s where a startup accelerator can do you some good.
A startup accelerator is defined as a supporter that can provide all sorts of support for an up-and-coming company. Whether it’s through financing or simply trying to teach the ropes to newcomers, there’s a lot that an accelerator can do for someone with startup creativity.
Think of it as a collage of sorts. Rather than “winging it” with your business and seeing where it goes, a startup accelerator can teach you the business know-how — and how to make everything click — within a matter of months. But what’s the best way to choose the right startup accelerator for you?
That’s where we come in. Let’s break down the best startup accelerator companies that you can find in the United States.
If there’s one startup accelerator that comes to mind with a great success rate, it’s Y Combinator. This company has been around since 2005. It not only provides seed funding where necessary but also guidance for startups.
Using a three-month program to help startup companies create a strategy, Y Combinator follows a number of specific steps. These can include building the right development plan, as well as setting up investors with the right pitch.
Furthermore, Y Combinator’s clientele speaks for itself. It includes companies such as Airbnb, Dropbox, and Reddit. That’s why this startup accelerator is the best of the bunch in the United States.
Plug and Play
Let’s say you don’t need a general course to help you, but rather something more specific. It helps to have selection with your startup accelerator — and Plug and Play provide that.
A company that’s been around since 2006, Plug and Play knows its stuff. It offers 12 different industry-specific programs for up-and-coming companies to choose from. What’s more, it runs them twice a year, so if a certain window goes by, another one is available soon after.
Best of all, Plug and Play provides connections between established startups and bigger companies. It has a number of worthwhile investments in companies such as Google and Paypal. So when it comes to knowing big business, Plug and Play, er, doesn’t play around.
Let’s say you need a startup accelerator that’s more about establishing enterprise-style businesses. That’s a little more advanced than you might think, but there’s a team that can help with that. Enter Alchemist Accelerator!
Established in 2012 and based in San Francisco, Alchemist dabbles in several industries. These include apps, biotechnology, enterprise software, manufacturing, and several other areas. It also has over 500 (!) investments, so it knows its stuff when it comes to big business.
This might be a bit higher-up when it comes to startup accelerator business, but those of you with that kind of approach may want to call Alchemist.
Along with creating a startup, let’s say that you want to do something with your business sense as well. Where’s a good startup accelerator that teaches you the fundamentals of business and maybe a little about yourself? Enter the Colorado-based Techstars.
This company got off the ground in 2006 and has since divided its efforts into three key industries — finance, financial services, and venture capital. With that, it provides years of expertise for each one, making them ideal for anyone looking to journey into the world of startups. With over 3,000 investments made, it’s certainly proven its worth.
Next up on our recommended startup accelerator list is Envestnet, a company that knows all about experience. It’s been around since 1999, marking more than 20+ years in the current business market.
A company noted as “fully vested in helping people live an intelligence financial life,” Envestnet is all about education.
It provides not only an abundant number of technology-enabled investment tools but also necessary steps with practice management. This is ideal for anyone just starting up with their company or wanting to learn more about supervisory skills.
Covering architecture, financial services, FinTech, and wealth management industries, Envestnet is a key choice for anyone that’s a man (or woman) or all trades.
Finally, while it sounds like this startup accelerator is actually 500 startup accelerators, it isn’t. This San Francisco-themed accelerator has been around since 2010, providing a variety of startup programs to choose from.
It’s also one of the most diverse startup accelerators in the United States. It serves all types of people, including investors and business types alike, with well over 2,500 investments. Not to mention that it’s one of the oldest players in the book when it comes to venture capital.
Don’t let the name fool you — 500 Startups is way more focused than you may realize. And that’s what makes them a quality choice on this list.