Connecticut’s budding entrepreneurs have a new accelerator program to help bring their ideas to fruition.
The Lean Launch Ventures Accelerator program is a 12-week class designed to provide instruction and mentoring to explore, refine and develop participants’ concepts with a goal of having a minimum viable product ready for release following completion of the course. The class begins March 5.
The program is the result of a partnership between Connecticut Innovations Inc. (CII) and tech advisory firm Lean Launch Ventures (LLV). It operates as part of the state’s Innovation Ecosystem, established last October by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy to encourage and support the growth of high-tech companies in the state.
The LLV program operates under the direction of co-founders Bill Gordon and Andy Moss, and is based on Lean LaunchPad methodology, which advocates frequent market experimentation while creating a minimum viable product, a methodology considered best practices in Silicon Valley. The program boasts that the process helps make for more flexible and economical product development.
Applications are currently being accepted, and eight to ten teams will be selected to take part in the accelerator program, which will operate out of the Stamford Innovation Center. Teams must be based in or willing to move to Connecticut, have been together at least three months, must have at least one high-tech team member, and must commit to working full-time on their startup. Participants are eligible for between $20,000 and $25,000 in funding in exchange for six percent equity.
In similar fashion to Startup Weekend — in which teams brainstorm over a single weekend to develop a startup and make a final pitch for further resources — the teams will conclude the LLV program with a demonstration night where they will pitch their business concepts to potential investors.