17 Incubators & Accelerators to Help Launch Your Big Idea

by / ⠀Startup Advice / March 6, 2013

Does your company need a boost? Incubators and accelerators can be a great option for any young company or even idea to get off the ground. These programs offer everything from funding, connections with top investors and mentors and collaborative work environments that can last for a few months to a whole year.



Y Combinator runs two three-month funding cycles a year, one from January through March and one from June through August. We ask the founders of each startup we fund to move to the Bay Area for the duration of their cycle, during which we work intensively with them to get the company into the best shape possible. Each cycle culminates in an event called Demo Day, at which the startups present to an audience that now includes most of the world’s top startup investors.

The overall goal of YC is to help startups really take off. They arrive at YC at all different stages. Some haven’t even started working yet, and others have been launched for a year or more. But whatever stage a startup is at when they arrive, our goal is to help them to be in dramatically better shape 3 months later.

Since 2005 we’ve funded over 500 startups.



TechStars is the #1 startup accelerator in the world.  We’re very selective – Although thousands of companies apply each year, we only invest our money and time in about ten companies per program location. We have selection rates lower than the Ivy League, so you have to be among the best of the best to earn investment from TechStars.

We offer six TechStars programs in top startup locations (Boston, Boulder, New York City, Seattle, London, and Cloud in San Antonio), on a regular schedule.  We invest $118K in each company we fund through $18K in seed funding and an optional $100K convertible debt note. TechStars itself is backed by over 75 different venture capital firms and angel investors who are vested in their success. We also provide three months of intensive top-notch mentorship, incredible perks, and the chance to pitch to angel investors and venture capitalists at the end of the program. Our companies average over $1.4M in outside venture capital raised after leaving TechStars.

Dreamit Ventures


The DreamIt founders designed DreamIt to be the startup accelerator program they wish existed when they started and sold their first companies. New startups today need only a little funding, but they need more help and support than ever before. They need a community of fellow entrepreneurs to share ideas and inspiration, technologists to join their team, Mentors and coaches who have struggled on their way to a big success, legal and accounting services that don’t cost precious cash, and opportunities to meet and pitch angel investors and venture capitalists.

Up to $25,000 of seed funding per company. ($5,000 plus $5,000 for each founding team member (up to four) who will be onsite for the program).

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AngelPad is a mentorship program founded by ex-Googler Thomas Korte to help web-technology startups build better products, attract additional funding and ultimately grow more successful businesses

Twice a year, we provide an extensive mentorship program to carefully selected startups, during the course of 10 weeks, in our San Francisco office.

The 10 weeks program covers all aspects of a company launch – from idea to product, market fit, customer acquisition and fundraising. We also take care of the less glamorous things like incorporation, immigration visas or fundraising documents.

Launchpad LA


Launchpad LA was founded as a mentorship organization in 2009 by Mark Suster (GRP Partners, bothsidesofthetable.com) with the goal of helping talented local entrepreneurs build relationships, get funded, and grow while remaining in Southern California. The idea came from our frustration with seeing LA companies receive funding from Northern California VCs and then choose to relocate their teams. Indeed, Launchpad LA began as a true collaboration among the area’s top VCs with a shared interest in seeing a robust tech community continue to grow and thrive in Los Angeles.

From 2009 to 2011, Launchpad LA accepted 23 companies into the mentorship program. The program at that time did not take equity or have an official office space, but featured regular events and dinners to support the participating companies. Of those 23 companies, 19 received outside funding, and 9 have been acquired to date. In total, the 19 companies raised around $80 million and their exits have exceeded $60 million.

We now offer each accepted company a $100,000 investment, free office space in the heart of Santa Monica (one block from the beach) for four months, and, most important of all, access to a massive network of mentors, advisors, and investors.



The Brandery is a seed stage startup accelerator ranked as one of the top programs in the United States. Our four-month-long program in Cincinnati, Ohio, focuses on the importance of consumer marketing and branding. Founded in 2010, we select approximately 10 companies for our program, each receiving $20,000 in seed funding, a great team of mentors, world- class design assistance, and the opportunity to pitch to investors and venture capitalists at the end of the program.

Capital Factory


Capital Factory’s mission is to identify and nurture capital efficient technology startups in Austin, Texas. We help people quit their jobs and become entrepreneurs.

We will encourage them to focus on revenue, not funding. Our goals for each company usually sounds very similar. First, get to $10k/month in revenue. Then, get to $100k/month in revenue and be profitable. Right now, we believe 1 million dollars per year in profitable revenue is a magic number: our goal is to help startups achieve this because we believe it is the path most likely to produce enduring and valuable businesses where everyone wins.

ERA Accelerator 


We know New York Tech. Let us help your startup succeed. Get your startup super-charged. Our combination of hands-on help, seed capital, a great co-working location, and know-how can help your company take the next step.

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ER Accelerator will provide all accepted participants an intensive experience in New York to help move their company forward. Each accepted company receives a $40,000 investment along with follow-on funding.

NYC SeedStart


NYC SeedStart Enterprise is an intensive, 12-week program designed to help entrepreneurs focused on the next-generation of enterprise software to launch new ventures in New York City. New York City has become one of the leading entrepreneurial communities in the country. With access to large amounts of capital, highly experienced investors and a robust ecosystem, New York is a very attractive location for companies to launch. NYC Seedstart Enterprise aims to put the pieces in place to allow talented entrepreneurs working on important enterprise trends and products to be in NYC and launch their ventures.

Excelerate Labs


Excelerate Labs is an intensive summer accelerator for startups driven by proven entrepreneurs and investors. Led by world class entrepreneurs Sam Yagan (OKCupid, Sparknotes) and Troy Henikoff (SurePayroll), the program is unique in attracting scores of mentors from around the country to work with the teams in direct 1-on-1 meetings.

The program selects ten companies every spring to participate in the 13-week intensive summer program. Starting in early June, the ten companies build connections and their business during the program. The program culminates in an Investor Demo Day at the end of August, where the companies showcase their progress and plans to more than 500 investors and mentors from around the country.



KickLabs works with a selected group of companies that are typically ready to start acquiring customers and generate revenue. Our focus is to connect our companies with prospective partners and key customers so they can build relationships that accelerate the growth of their businesses. KickLabs does not compete with Y Combinator, Tech Stars, Angel Pad, 500 Start Ups or other technology incubator programs. KickLabs is a natural landing pad for companies that may have completed one of these top incubator programs or are establishing a presence in Silicon Valley. Seed funding may be readily available today, but after a start up graduates from an incubator program or secures seed funding, they need to find ways to turn their idea into a viable business. That’s where we excel. We help our entrepreneurs accelerate the growth of their business. We facilitate meetings and relationships with major brands, business partners, investors, professional services, ad agencies and portfolio companies.

500 Startups


500 Startups provides early-stage companies with up to $250K in funding, our startup accelerator program, and unique events like SmashSummit, UnSexy, and GeeksOnaPlane. With hundreds of experienced startup mentors around the world, our creative work space in the heart of Silicon Valley, and a vibrant community of startup founders, we help companies succeed in ways other venture firms do not. We are 500.



TechNexus is the gateway to collaboration for Chicago’s technology leaders.  Established in 2007, the ecosystem began with private investment and community support and in partnership with the Illinois Technology Association (ITA) to serve as a ‘clubhouse’ where ventures grow, and a co-working facility to bring technology professionals together, foster relationships and promote a sense of community in Chicago.

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TechWildcatters is a mentorship-driven microseed fund and startup accelerator. Our 12-week accelerator “bootcamp” runs every spring and fall starting April 2010 in Dallas.

We’re very selective – each year we expect hundreds of companies to apply to the program and 8-10 of them will be invited to Dallas for each class. The companies get up to $25,000 in seed funding, intensive top-notch mentorship, and the opportunity to pitch to angel investors, venture capitalists and corporate development teams at our end of program “Pitch Day”.



NYU-Poly started its first business incubator, at its downtown Brooklyn campus in 2004. In 2009 we partnered with New York City to open a second incubator, Varick Street, in Manhattan as as part of Mayor Bloomberg’s Five Borough Economic Opportunity Plan. In 2009 we also began NYC ACRE, our incubator focused on supporting the efforts of clean-technology-oriented companies.

The goal of each of our incubators is to provide the guidance, expertise, and resources that organizations need to grow into successful ventures that bring economic growth to New York City.

Founder Institute


The Founder Institute is an early-stage startup accelerator and global launch network that helps entrepreneurs create meaningful and enduring technology companies. Through a part-time four month program, existing and prospective founders can launch their dream company with expert training, feedback, and support from experienced startup CEOs – while not being required to quit their day job. Our unique Graduate Liquidity Pool also enables graduates and mentors to share in the equity upside of each class, creating local, teamwork-based ecosystems where great new businesses can flourish.

In just over three years of operation, the Founder Institute has helped launch over 650 companies across 42 cities and five continents – making us the world’s largest startup accelerator. Our goal is to “Globalize Silicon Valley” by launching 1,000 meaningful and enduring technology companies per year in over 50 cities worldwide.



We help early-stage entrepreneurs win.

We connect entrepreneurs with the resources they need to launch and succeed immediately. Our primary activities include running an annual global accelerator program and startup competition, documenting and organizing key resources, and organizing training and networking events.

We are addressing this gap by launching the world’s largest accelerator program and startup competition. We use the power of competition to create urgency, and to identify and aggregate high-impact teams and resources. We strengthen and accelerate finalists by providing them high-quality, personalized mentorship and by connecting them to potential team members, advisors, customers and sponsors.

Did we miss any? Let us know in the comments

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