Accelerators / DEI / Startups

Pax Momentum is the newest accelerator to join the DC startup scene

Applications are being accepted until June 1 for the inaugural eight-week program for startups in all industries.

Getting work done. (Photo by Pixabay user rawpixel, used under a Creative Commons license)

A new accelerator led by a local angel investor is looking for 10 startups to join its inaugural cohort.

Pax Momentum welcomes startups from anywhere to apply to take part in its eight-week program, which offers a $50,000 equity investment. The accelerator will be conducted mostly virtually, with three in-person meetups to be hosted in D.C. and other parts of the Mid-Atlantic region.

Twice a year, Pax will select 10 startups to participate. In each cohort, three spots will be reserved for cleantech companies that contribute in some way to sustainability, Matthew Hanson, the accelerator’s cofounder and partner, told

Accelerator participants will also attend a two to three-day summit, where they will hear from seasoned founders and work on their businesses in small groups with investors, and there will be optional weekly classes offered that will cover a variety of topics.

“Key building blocks, like value proposition, go-to-market plans and product market/fit will be stress tested,” Hansom said of the program. “For serious entrepreneurs, the process will be exhausting and painful. Successful founders and investors know that revenue is the metric that matters, so we emphasize and overemphasize practical skills for landing and retaining customers.”

Applications for the inaugural fall 2020 cohort will be accepted until June 1. Throughout June, Pax will conduct virtual interviews and announce the cohort on July 15. The accelerator will run from Aug. 17 through Oct. 16.


“More than anything, we want great people,” Hanson said about the type of entrepreneurs the program is looking to work with. “Strong credentials might include previous startup experience; work experience demonstrating deep market understanding; advanced degrees; and a history of thoughtfully and persistently working through tough problems.”

Each interested company should have at least two cofounders dedicated full-time to the project, said Hanson, who is also principal at Blu Venture Investors. And while he’s specifically interested in B2B companies working in the cyber, fintech, AI, cleantech, ecommerce and telecom sectors, Pax is open to startups in all industries.

Hanson is working with a small team on outreach and other key logistics for the program. In the next couple of weeks, Pax will announce the expert founders and entrepreneurs who will be working closely with the inaugural cohort during the accelerator this fall.

Though Pax officially launched in January, like many organizations, it didn’t anticipate the spread of COVID-19. Hanson said despite the pandemic, he’s still grateful for the timing for other reasons.

“Our mission from the beginning was important and resonated with the startup community. Now, we are something more. Entrepreneurs everywhere are concerned about their future,” he said. “Many [businesses] did not live through the Great Recession. Innovation and small businesses are what will lead the country, and the globe, out of this unsettling financial crisis.”


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