Meet 9 companies in the 2nd FastFWD social enterprise accelerator class - Technical.ly Philly

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Meet 9 companies in the 2nd FastFWD social enterprise accelerator class

An online job portal for ex-offenders, an urban farming network and more.

The Philly Urban Creators are the only Philadelphia company participating in the second class of FastFWD.

(Photo courtesy of Philly Urban Creators)

The City of Philadelphia, GoodCompany Group and the Wharton Social Impact Initiative announced the second class of its social enterprise accelerator, FastFWD, today. Each company is focused on improving public safety.

The second class kicks off this week. Backed by a $1 million grant from the Bloomberg Foundation, the accelerator awards $10,000 to each company, as well as mentorship, training and office space in Kensington’s Impact Hub. Every company will have the opportunity to apply for a city contract at the end of the 12-week program. The idea behind the accelerator is to cut through the bureaucratic red tape involved in the city procurement process.

In this second class, only one of the companies is from Philadelphia: Philly Urban Creators, an urban farming network. The rest hail from along the East Coast and as far as Fishers, Ind., and Liberia.

One new facet of the second class is that PowerCorpsPHL, a youth Americorps program, will be working with FastFWD to see how its curriculum can work for city initiatives, said FastFWD director Story Bellows.

Below, see the full list of companies.

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  • Agency360: A public-safety software shop. From Fishers, Ind.
  • AlertCall: A mobile app and wearable device that alerts law enforcement of an emergency. From Pittsburgh, Pa.
  • CityScan: A venture-backed software company focused on “street-level data collection.” From Chicago, Il.
  • Haphire: An online job portal for ex-offenders. From Baltimore, Md.
  • IDEFOCS: A non-governmental organization focused on improving the lives of former child soldiers. From Monrovia, Liberia.
  • OpportunitySpace: A marketplace that lets people invest in urban real estate. From Boston, Mass.
  • Propel: A crowdfunded startup that is “like TurboTax for complicated government applications, starting with food stamps,” according to its founders. From Brooklyn, N.Y. Find coverage of their food stamps project on Technical.ly Brooklyn.
  • Sayfty: Provides self-defense products for women. From Brooklyn, N.Y.
  • The Urban Creators: An urban farming network. From Philadelphia, Pa.

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