LaunchYU Accelerator Program

Program Overview:

The LaunchYU AccelerateUP program is a 4 month program, designed to support entrepreneurs as they Build, Launch, and Scale their ventures.

This intensive program is divided in four sprints. Each sprint focuses on a key aspect of the business as the theme:

  • Sprint 1: Product-Market Fit
  • Sprint 2: Pitching and Messaging
  • Sprint 3: Go-to-market Strategy
  • Sprint 4: Finance and Fund-raising

Each sprint is roughly four weeks long and each sprint consists of:

  1. A day-long hands-on bootcamp to deepdive into the topic of the theme.
  2. One mastermind peer-to-peer feedback session.
  3. One or two lightning rounds
  4. One critical feedback session with an investors or an experienced entrepreneur.

The program also offers participating ventures a total of $55,000 in awards. This is divided into three awards:

  • AccelerateUP Award 1: Five awards for $3000 each.
  • AccelerateUP Award 2: Three awards for $5000 each.
  • Aird & Berlis StartupSource Market Entry Award: One award of $25,000 (including $12,500 in cash and an equal amount of Aird & Berlis’s StartupSource legal services.)

The program also provides access to resources like collaborative?working space, legal advice and services, cloud and virtual infrastructure, access to maker spaces, investor meet-ups, industry connections, and more.

At the end of the program, ventures participate at a Graduation and Launch Day where they pitch to an audience consisting of investors, corporate executives, successful entrepreneurs and government officials.

Program Requirements:

  • To participate in the LaunchYU AccelerateUP Program, you must apply as a startup venture. If there are multiple co-founders for the startup, all co-founder's shall submit a single application form here.
  • The LaunchYU AccelerateUP Program is designed to support all types of ventures, including for-profit, not-for-profit, and for-profit social enterprises.
  • The program is open to all individuals, regardless of their affiliation with York University, including all external community members, students, alumni, staff, and faculty members.
  • The program includes weekly sessions and intensive one-on-one sessions conducted by entrepreneurs and industry experts, which are required to be attended by all the ventures.

Selection Process:

  • A maximum of 20 ventures are?selected in each cohort of the accelerator. This includes up to five social enterprises.
  • All?applications submitted are?evaluated and selected applicants are?invited for an in-person interview.
  • The final selection of participating ventures is?made after the interviews.
  • The ventures are evaluated based on 2 major criteria:
    1. Capability of the founding team to execute
    2. Potential impact of the venture idea and the ability of the venture?to scale

Program Cost:

  • The LaunchYU AccelerateUP Program is offered at no cost to the participating ventures.
  • LaunchYU or York University does not charge any fees or claim any equity share from the ventures participating in the LaunchYU AccelerateUP Program.
  • The only contribution expected from the participants is their commitment to their venture and their?active participation?in the program.

Important Dates:

  • Application Deadline:?April 1, 2018
  • Program Start Date:?May 2018 (final date TBC)
  • AccelerateUP Award 1 (5 awards of $3000 each): Early July, 2018
  • AccelerateUP Award 2 (3 awards of $5000 each): End of August, 2018
  • Graduation & Launch Day:?Mid-September, 2018
  • Aird & Berlis StartupSource Market Entry Award: Late January, 2019