Rough Days

We Can’t Figure Out Who This Failing Startup Is Because There’s Just Too Many Candidates

(Photo: Andrew-Hyde, via Flickr)

One lonely, stressed-out startup dude has caused a stir on Hacker News today, with the introduction of a Tumblr called My Startup Has 30 Days to Live. It’s exactly what it sounds like, a cri de coeur from someone whose company is likely headed into its death spiral.

According to the anonymous entrepreneur, his company was “bootstrapped, lean and already providing (in a small way at least) for the needs of my family and that of my co-founder” when it entered an accelerator.

They were quickly talked out of their desire not to raise a seed round and became “thoroughly convinced that we had to continue on the VC rocket-ship in order to matter to anyone.” With the VC money came advisors who told them things like, “Cut out that pesky client that generates 80% of your revenue, they’re a distraction on the road to executing $OUR_BIG_VISION.” Read More

Cowork With Me?

Why 500 Startups Decided to Launch an NYC Coworking Space and Not an Accelerator

187-shai-goldman

Shai Goldman, a venture partner at 500 Startups, recently announced another sign of the seed stage fund’s growing interest in New York City–besides poaching a Silicon Alley stalwart like Mr. Goldman, of course. This February, the firm plans on opening a coworking office at 28th Street and Park Avenue in the Flatiron, not far from General Assembly.

500 Startups is known for its global focus. The only physical space the firm had up until New York was a corporate office in Mountain View, “which is where we run our accelerator throughout the year,” Mr. Goldman told Betabeat by phone. But 500 Startups opted for a different route here.  Read More

Accelerated Learning

Beware the Artificial Accelerator

Paul Graham, YCombinator overlord. (flickr.com/jolieodell)

In the world of startup accelerators, TechStars and Y Combinator are arguably top dogs. Each receives thousands of eager applicants every year, and only accepts an elite percentage of companies into their inner circles. But of course, with the success of the TechStars/Y Combinator models comes a slew of copycat accelerators that may lack the credentials and experience to actually help their applicants. Read More

Teach Me How to Startup

About One New Accelerator Is Launching a Day, Says TechStars Founder

(Photo: CERN)

Yesterday we wrote that the tech accelerator epidemic had hit New Jersey. The truth may be closer to: The tech accelerator epidemic has hit everywhere. Tech accelerators are so in vogue that Forbes added an accelerator ranking to its “Midas List” coverage, which includes a list of the top 100 venture capitalists.

Incubators have become so popular that about one accelerator launches every day, David Cohen, the founder and CEO of TechStars, told Forbes. He’s said it before; he was echoing his own earlier line from a panel about accelerators at SXSW. “It’s become a new college for entrepreneurs,” he added.

Forbes has rated Y Combinator, TechStars and DreamIt Ventures as the top three accelerators in the country. We’re all for accelerators, but one a day seems excessive. Echoes of ’99?

Demo Daze

Pick Your Ponies: DreamIt Demo Day is Here

There is nothing Betabeat likes better than squeezing into a tightly packed mob of investors and watching a cattle call of young start-ups strut their stuff on stage (more metaphors, please! –ed). The tweets are flying fast and furious while handshakes and checks are being exchanged. At least that was the scene at our first rodeo, when we attended TechStars NY Demo Day at Webster Hall. Today Philly-based DreamIt Ventures will unveil their first class of New York start-ups.

Accelerators

Bring On the Pre-Incubators

joanne wilson

New York has plenty of accelerators–TechStars! DreamIt! Entrepreneurs Roundtable! TechStars, again! But incubators have gotten so selective that companies need to be more and more mature in order to get in. Enter the pre-accelerator.

Founder Labs is a five-week mentoring program for (preferably) female entrepreneurs looking to do something with mobile. It was developed by Women 2.0 and is now being spun off as a standalone entity, and expanding to New York. Read More