Entrepreneurship organization and community Philly Startup Leaders announced Thursday that the second cohort of its Founded in Philly accelerator for early-stage entrepreneurs kicked off this week.
The accelerator, which relaunched last year amid an organizational revamp, is a 12-week program offering mentorship, a speakers series, financial opportunities and business-building lessons. The accelerator is now broken into two parts: one for “idea-stage” founders, and this program, for “MVP” startups, which have their business idea more solidified.
Last year, the City of Philadelphia granted $150,000 to the program, and over the summer, former PSL Director Kiera Smalls got a handful of area businesses and orgs to pledge more than $500,000 to the future of the program.
The funds are intended to go to founders from “underrepresented backgrounds,” with the hope of getting Philly’s tech and entrepreneurship ecosystem to more closely reflect the city’s demographics.
“Yes, we’re still going to be known for our events, and education and networking, but it’s been a dream to also be a part of funding,” Smalls told Technical.ly in June.
The 10 startups participating in the Founded in Philly accelerator will do so through weekly virtual sessions, working through topics like “the customer experience,” “founder wellness” and “a roadmap to investment.” The cohort will hear from speakers such as Kristen Swanson, chief of staff at Slack; Nkiruka Nwasokwa, technology marketing expert at Explain to Win; and Mike Gadsby, cofounder and CIO at O3 World.
The cohort will also have mentors such as Munir Pathak, former PSL accelerator participant and CEO of Swirl; Talia Edmondson, founder of HRnB Consulting; and technologist and entrepreneur Tiffanie Stanard.
The 10 startups participating in this year’s cohort are:
- JumpButton Studio — A game and animation studio that makes apps, websites and products that “invoke change and inspire creativity”
- Katika — An online marketplace and directory for Black-owned products and brands from the U.S. and South Africa
- Modern Mouth — Presentation software that allows lecturers to design presentations for a classroom with a library of 3D images
- Pure Organiks — An organic skin and hair care brand made with plant-derived chemicals, vitamins and essential nutrients
- Quarbon — A crowdsourced sustainability ratings platform to make it easier to find transparent, environmentally minded businesses
- Rae’s Roots — A daily supplement created to help moms feels their best
- Roux — A restaurant solution startup designed to build an equitable, inclusive and sustainable model for food providers, restaurants and consumers
- Swiv — A toothbrush designed to be accessible for people with cognitive disabilities.
- TiP (Transparency in Politics) — A platform offering voters a way to communicate with politicians based on their views
- Viora Health — A startup that uses data science and behavioral science tools to stratify risk, intervene, monitor and support patients to prevent disease progression
P.S. JumpButton cofounder and CEO Nicodemus Madehdou is nominated for Technical.ly Awards’ 2020 Technical Leader of the Year. Voting is open through Monday, Sept. 21.
It's time to meet the founders! ?? We are excited to introduce the 10 companies in our Fall 2020 cohort of #FoundedInPhilly Series II! Learn about the founding teams and what's ahead for these promising startups. We can't wait to showcase their progress! https://t.co/eGqHvWkrho pic.twitter.com/Z4YYZ4kB1A
— PhillyStartupLeaders (@startupleaders) September 17, 2020