Should you join a startup accelerator? Here’s what you need to know

April 4th 2018
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@angeliquecmossAngelique Moss

Startup accelerators help support early-stage, growth-driven firms through education, mentorship, and financing. Startups who join accelerators do it for a fixed amount of time as a part of the accelerator’s program. Joining one involves a process of rapid and immersive education aimed at accelerating the life cycle of innovation, compressing years of learning into a span of a few months.

Statistics from the International Business Innovation Association reveal that around the world, there are 7,000 business incubators and accelerators. More than 90 percent of them are nonprofit and focused on incubator programs for community economic development. Furthermore, startups who qualify to join top-ranked accelerators will get to receive a rigorous development program, top-quality professional guidance, and seed funding to move ahead of the competitors.

What to consider before joining a startup accelerator

If you’re an entrepreneur looking to speed up the process of your business, then a startup accelerator may be the answer that you are looking for. However, there are several considerations to make before deciding to join one. Among these are:

Training

The early days of a business involve careful prioritizing of tasks which can make or break any business. Training provided by startup accelerators allow entrepreneurs to quickly master information processing while discovering wisdom from other entrepreneurs.

Topics to look out for in training would include customer development, design principles, and sales. That said, when looking for accelerator programs, it’s crucial that entrepreneurs have the opportunity to learn from experts.

Preparing for financing

Accelerator programs can assist entrepreneurs in securing financing as raising capital is never an easy task. Through accelerator programs, entrepreneurs can get the chance to know investors who can work with them to make sure that the business is interesting, healthy, and defensible.

Moreover, accelerator programs can also put forth several questions such as market opportunity, hiring plan, customers, and the like that will prepare the business for funding.

Understanding success metrics

Some startup accelerator programs have a clear definition of understanding the success metrics of a business. This step allows entrepreneurs to grow their business in a multitude of ways, but it can also be a negative as it indicates the lack of expertise that will steer the business on the right path.

While it may be difficult to figure out the metrics of a business’ success, entrepreneurs should do some research on an accelerator’s former startups and talk to them about their experience and how the program was able to benefit them.

Communication

Accelerators provide entrepreneurs the opportunity to practice good communication skills that can come in handy when pitching the business. It allows entrepreneurs to become master storytellers who can clearly communicate their vision to motivate others.

Additionally, some accelerator programs also have a designer or staff that can help entrepreneurs put together a presentation that will hopefully wow investors and customers. It’s important that an accelerator can help you make a value proposition and get it in front of the audience.

A startup accelerator that complements the accelerator market

Digital Arts Media Network (OTCMKTS:DATI) was created to offer specialized accelerator services that are focused on expediting capital formation by leveraging early liquidity strategies. The company includes Angels+, Crowdfunding, and Token Generating Events (commonly referred to as Initial Coin Offerings). The company is the first Public Accelerator-Incubator (PAI) of its kind, and it aims to be known for creating an equitable environment for investments, wealth, liquidity, and opportunity.

The company concentrates on expediting capital information by providing angel and early-stage investors access to liquidity faster than traditional fundraising models. The company’s goal is that the more liquidity it gives to private investors, the more money there is available to deploy to more companies more often.

This is an invaluable tool for accelerators like TechStars and Y-Combinator as these concern angel and early-stage investors. Digital Arts Media Network also provides disenfranchised investors (microcap, non-accredited and poorer economic class people) the opportunity to invest in high-tech startups at the development stage.

Moreover, Digital Arts Media Network does not compete with accelerator or incubator market but is actually a compliment to them. The firm can be fed from hundreds of accelerators and incubators around the world. It is also a public company, giving them access to more capital and opens up their portfolio of startups to the public markets so that all investor classes can participate in startups that they would not have access to otherwise.

In the pipeline, Digital Arts Media Network plans to raise up to $10 million in the next two years to develop its current business model which also includes cryptocurrency. All of its future growth will also be funded from revenues.

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