WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE ACCELERATOR PROGRAM AND AN EXPERIENCE?
The Accelerator is a fully immersive program that comes with funding from Draper Startup House and is free to the portfolio companies who are accepted into it. Experiences are paid by the startup themselves. It does include light programming, but does not come with funding. Experiences are a fantastic way to get in front of the Draper team and also to immerse yourself with other founders building in the same industry.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING AN EXPERIENCE?
You will be living with other founders building in the same industry as you for two weeks. During that time, our team will facilitate light programming. Light programming includes 1-2 speakers a week, plus happy hours and introductions to VC’s and advisors who can work with you to give you feedback on your product. Aside from the programming piece, the true value will come from the relationships you build with the other founders in the house during the two weeks.
How many founders will be at each experience?
The number of founders will depend on the quality of applicants for each house. There will be a minimum of 5 companies who attend and a maximum of 15.
DOES THE DRAPER TEAM STAY AT THE HOUSES WITH YOU DURING THE EXPERIENCES?
No. The Draper team facilitates the experiences, but is not on site.
What does it cost to attend an experience and what do the costs cover?
Each location and house will vary, which is why we list out the price ranges you are comfortable with, rather than exact costs. Once you apply and are accepted into a program, we will send more information on the options, based on your budget. The costs include living and programming expenses. You will be required to pay for your own meals and travel expenses.
I SEE ONE PERSON CAN BE SELECTED TO RECEIVE A FREE SPOT IN THE HOUSE. WHAT ARE THE DETAILS?
Each house we select one person to go through entirely free. This person is selected by our team based on multiple factors, including character, business idea, resilience and much more. To apply, you simply need to fill out the online application.
Will attending an experience help me get into the accelerator?
It absolutely can. By going through one of our experiences, the DSH team will take a deeper look into each of the startups attending and be given 1:1 interviews to attend the DSH Accelerator program.
Will I have my own room or will the room be shared?
There will be options for both shared or private rooms. Founders will be able to select their preference based on availability and price.
What is the cancellation policy if I have an issue and can't attend?
We require a 30 day notice for cancellations and refunds.
Can other members of my startup attend along with me?
We will do our best to accommodate both you and your co-founder. Each person will be required to pay for their own stay, but if there is space in the house, we will make sure to take into consideration that you both want to attend. Two people maximum for each company will be allowed to attend.
Do I have to be from the US to attend?
No. We encourage applicants from all over the world to apply.
What types of light programming will be part of the experience?
We will facilitate 1-2 speakers per week, plus introductions to VC’s and advisors where applicable. We will also provide recommendations for events hosted by other community builders as well as our team.
Can I expect to meet VCs and Investors?
It is not guaranteed that our team will introduce you to VC’s and investors. If you are at the right stage in your business and we have a connection that makes sense, we will introduce you. Through the events we host and recommend during your stay, you will likely organically meet VC’s and investors.
Does my startup have to be at a certain level to attend an Experience?
We prefer those applying to have a product built. You do not have to have specific metrics hit or have raised a specific amount of funding, but we do want those staying in the house to be far enough along that they can contribute to the overall house and provide value to the other founders attending.
CAN I HOST MY OWN EXPERIENCE IF I WANT TO DO A SEPARATE INDUSTRY AND/OR LOCATION FROM THE ONES LISTED ON THE SITE?
Eventually! We are working up to that. For now, we are limiting the industries and locations to those hosted by our team. In the future you will be able to list and create all of your own experiences to help us facilitate a truly decentralized accelerator experience.
What is a "pop up" accelerator?
We use the term “Pop Up” Accelerator, because we are not tied to one location permanently. We will move our accelerator across the globe to provide everyone in the world access to the tools and resources of Silicon Valley. If you are interested in bringing DSH Accelerator to your city please reach out to us at email@example.com
How is your program different from other accelerators?
We consider ourselves a not-so-typical accelerator. We like to do things differently through a couple different ways. First, we are a pop-up experience meaning that we bring our program to other parts of the world for a 1 month period. By doing this, it allows founders all over the world the opportunity to attend. Next, we encourage all founders to live together and provide them with housing during the 1 month program. These collisions and connections you will make will help you on your startup journey. Last, we want to take you out of your comfort zone through Grit Training so that you leave better prepared to withstand the long road ahead building your business.
Can I have arranged my own housing and still be a part of the cohort?
If you already live in Austin or you prefer not to live in the house with the other founders, we are open to the conversation. However, we strongly encourage you to live with the other founders during the entirety of the program. The co-living portion and the collisions that will happen will play a large part in the overall experience.
Will all participants in the cohort receive funding?
Yes, everyone who is accepted into the Accelerator program will receive funding.
Please note: entrepreneurs who participate only in the individual experiences are not provided with funding or guaranteed funding.
How many people will be in each cohort?
There will be a maximum of 10 startups accepted into each cohort.
How much do you invest?
We invest up to $100,000 dollars through a SAFE note.
Will COVID-19 impact how the in-person portion of the program will work?
We will be more open and flexible with a remote or hybrid model with COVID-19 still running rampant. Each person will be required to receive a negative COVID test before living in the house.
How many founders will be accepted into the Accelerator?
Each team will be allowed to have two co-founders maximum participate in the accelerator program.
When is the best time for me to apply to the program?
When you have a solid business idea, team and a bit of traction. We recommend applying at the latest, one month prior to the start of the program.
Is the house Co-ed?
Yes, both females and males will be living in the house. However, we will accommodate room requests as they come in.
Can I continue to live in the house after the program?
No, all portfolio companies must leave the house after the program on the requested date to make room for the next cohort.
Do I have to be from the US to Apply?
No, we accept applications from founders all across the globe. We do encourage you to incorporate in the US however.
What industry do you invest in?
We are industry agnostic, we are looking for great founders building industry transforming companies, no matter the industry.
Who will I be learning from?
All mentors, speakers, workshops will be taught by those currently working in the industry, whether that be founders or CEO’s of successful companies, or workshops taught by industry experts.
Are you able to help founders get their visa?
We can provide an official acceptance letter to help you obtain a visa to attend the program.
Are the founders responsible for travel expenses to the program?
Yes, you as a participant are expected to cover your travel expenses to the program and when you are in Austin. We provide programming and accommodations, but you are responsible for covering costs to get to the program.
Do you pay for meals during the program?
We will pay for lunches and happy hours from time-to-time, but you are responsible for feeding yourself day-to-day.
What other expenses can founders expect to have?
Anything outside of rent and programming expenses you are expected to cover yourself. Whether that be ubers to non DSH events, coffee with investors you meet or a ride to and from the airport.