2017 Valley Venture Mentors Startup Accelerator
To be eligible to enter the Valley Venture Mentors (VVM) Accelerator Program, a startup entry must be at an early stage of development, and each team must meet basic qualifying criteria:
1) Your company has revenue less than $250k over the last 12 months, at time of application.
2) At least one team member can commit to attend all of the minimum in person required dates in Springfield, MA.
3) At least one team member is committed to working 20 + hours a week on this venture.
4) Each team must accept Accelerator & Competition Rules.
To enter the VVM Accelerator, a team must submit a written application through VVM page on F6s.com. Applications are open September 16, 2016 – October 19, 2016 @ 11:59 PM EST. Applications submitted after the October 19, 2016 deadline will not be considered.
Admitted Startups & Awards
VVM Accelerator seeks to admit and award high-impact new ventures that will be successful. All teams admitted into 2017 Cohort:
- Receive free resources in Massachusetts including mentorship, work space, strategic advice, and networking opportunities to further their businesses.
- Have equal opportunity to earn up to $50k in cash awards from $250k+ cash prize pool, no equity – no strings attached, in addition to public relations promotion, and marketing exposure from the Competition.
- Agree to use any award towards development of the startup business. No other restrictions.
- Will need to have established an entity for the startup business to be eligible for prize money. Prize money cannot be paid to individuals.
Program & Process
September: VVM opening of website for entries.
October: Deadline for entry submission.
December: Application judging completed – Cohort of startups selected.
January – May: Accelerator Program. Each team is assigned to a curated peer sub-cohort, given access and introduction to the VVM network of advisors, and provided free office space in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts. Monthly, long weekend, investment readiness boot camps featuring hands-on training, expert-led lectures, peer collaboration, advisor office hours, and practice judging rounds. Weekly workshops covering strategy, innovation, marketing, sales, team building/dynamics, operating best practices, fundraising, and term sheets & valuations 101.
April: Public Showcase
May: Final Judging. VVM Accelerator Graduation. Announcement of awards.
**Entrants who participate in the Accelerator must be present in Massachusetts to be eligible for awards. Active on-site participation in the program is a prerequisite to eligibility for prize money and all judging occurs in-person in Springfield, Massachusetts.
The goal of the judging process is to award startups who have demonstrated promise for economic success and positive impact in the community. There are five months of education, training, and workshops which are all based on judging criteria, and three rounds of practice judging that culminate in a public showcase, Competition, and graduation party.
VVM will enlist the services of expert judges who are independent and objective, with no conflicts of interest.
Admittance to the Accelerator Cohort will be based on judges’ scores of the submitted written application and completion of round two assignment and in person or Skype interviews.
Cash awards are based on judges’ scores of written materials, presentations, and live interactions. Additionally, peer evaluation scores from fellow Cohort Finalists will also determine if participating startups qualify for Accelerator completion awards.
Entrants may provide a limited number of names of individuals who can act as references for their company. These references are optional. They can provide additional information to assist in assessing the application. Collecting the references can also assist the entrepreneur by encouraging networking.
VVM shall be held harmless in the event of any legal action.
VVM takes no responsibility for agreements between Accelerator participants and third parties.
VVM takes no part in, and has no liability for, the domestic or international intellectual property rights of Competition participants.
Participants are responsible for their own intellectual property.
Participants must keep confidential information confidential.
Entry materials become the property of VVM, however, the submission of the application does not transfer any rights, material or interest in any intellectual property contained in or referenced in the submitted materials, other than the copyright to the submitted materials as submitted.
Participants who engage in immoral activities, including lying and cheating, or any activity that may adversely affect the image of VVM or other participants, become ineligible for the participation in the Accelerator Program and Competition.
All work and submissions of Entrants must be original to the Entrant/team, or currently owned by the Entrant/team.
All participants must comply with the Rules. Any violation of the Rules will disqualify an entrant’s team from the Accelerator and the Competition, and result in forfeiture of any awards awarded to the team.
Liability Related to Awards
Awardees may not hold VVM or other participants responsible for any harm resulting from accepting or using any award.
Participants must be legally present in the United States. VVM takes no responsibility for immigration status of participants. Recipients of any award are responsible for all taxes relating to the receipt of such award. VVM is not responsible for any tax obligations imposed on any Participant as a result of their participation in the Accelerator or the receipt of any award.
Each participant warrants that he or she does not participate in any terrorist activities. VVM shall not be held responsible for any harm resulting breach of this warranty.
The Competition is subject to applicable federal, state, and local laws.
VVM may update the Accelerator and Competition Rules throughout the Program. All updates will be posted on the VVM website. These Rules include by incorporation any material posted on the VVM website; in the case of conflict, the “Accelerator and Competition Rules” supersede any other claims.
For the most up-to-date information, visit the official Startup Accelerator website.