APPROACH AND METHODOLOGY
The TechStars Network is actively recruiting high quality accelerators to join the TechStars Network, and simultaneously organizing events and online resources to facilitate knowledge sharing between network members. TechStars has been gathering interest in funding Star Power Partners from private, for-profit investors, which will be announced this year.
IMPLEMENTATION, TIMELINE, AND DELIVERABLES
By the end of 2013, the TechStars Network plans to double the current number of its network members. TechStars will do this by partnering with existing accelerators as well as actively helping to develop accelerators in underserved locations. In 2011, TechStars will announce access to Star Power Partners capital for all companies accepted into a TechStars program in 2012 forward until the fund is depleted or renewed, which is projected to be approximately three years from launch. In total, this fund will be approximately $20M in size.
Many start-up accelerators exist, but there is poor knowledge sharing between these organizations to identify best practices to accelerate the start-ups that are enrolled in their programs. By expanding the TechStars Network, TechStars can both better share its learning developed through five years of tech start-up acceleration, as well as facilitate other accelerators sharing their practices, resulting in stronger start-ups with a greater chance of building successful businesses and greater job creation potential.
In addition, TechStars has seen that the growth of many start-ups entering its program has been limited because the companies must focus on fundraising prior to the end of the three month program in order to obtain the resources they need to take full advantage of their acceleration opportunity (seed stage investment of $18,000 per start-up barely covers living expenses). By launching Star Power Partners in late 2011, TechStars will enable every company within its program to access convertible debt of $100k to help them hire developers, pay for hard technical costs and fund marketing efforts needed during the acceleration program. This will dramatically increase the potential of what they can achieve during the program, increasing their ability to accelerate quickly and launch a more substantial start-up on Demo Day. The follow-on effects are greater chances at company success, and greater job creation potential.