Gen. X is determined in disrupting the startup ecosystem as we know it and with that in mind: we’re selecting only 10 companies that will participate in our thriving international acceleration program.
“Accelerators are pivoting and parallel18 is leading the way too. As we celebrate our tenth cohort, we wanted to do something different. With that in mind, we are awarding the largest grant ever and reducing the number of participants to offer a specialized and tailored program experience for them,” revealed Juan Carlos Hernández, parallel18’s Executive Director.
Furthermore, we will be offering a staggering $150,000 USD grant that will be disbursed into two payments: a $125,000 USD grant that startups will receive during the 20-week program. The companies will receive this amount in exchange for a promise or commitment to donate to our parent organization the Puerto Rico Science, Technology, and Research Trust (PRSTRT), 1% of the value of the company’s shares at the time of its acquisition or IPO (Initial Public Offering).
The second disbursement will be an investment for the amount of $25,000 USD on an Simple Agreement for Future Equity (SAFE), uncapped with a Most Favored Nation (MFN) provision. The MFN will take on the terms of the lowest cap SAFE, or other favorable terms, between the acceptance to the program and the company’s next equity round.
“This new agreement with the companies will allow founders to take advantage of launching and scaling their company to other markets; they will avoid being pressured into continually raising funds and accept less favorable terms. On the other hand, with the donation commitment that we require from each startup, we inspire and educate entrepreneurs to be an entity of good and while encouraging them to lead social changes. This share will go directly to the PRSTRT to continue expanding the entrepreneurship programs in the island,” highlighted Hernández.
Basic requirements for our ideal GenXers:
- Traction: Startups that already have sales or users that are willing to pay for their product or service are better served by our program. Our sweet spot will be: for Enterprise/Marketplace startups: $2k+ in MRR (monthly recurring revenue) with 20%+ growth month over month. For consumer products: 3k+ DAUs (daily active users) with 5%+ week over week growth.
- Scalability: Companies that have a product or business model that can easily be adapted to new markets but that have already tried products in at least one market.
- Early-stage startups: Startups that have been operating for 3 years or less. This timeline counts from the moment the company starts selling. Historically, our #p18ners have a product in the market, with traction and revenue.
- Be able to participate in our in-person format from Puerto Rico: Gen.X, will follow an in-person format. Our participants will get involved with Puerto Rico’s startup ecosystem and must be willing to be on the island during the 20-week program. Applicants should research and develop a plan on how they will leverage Puerto Rico as a place to scale their startups. This includes hiring local talent, acquiring customers, among other aspects. The return to an in-person format can be subject to change; depending on how the COVID-19 pandemic keeps developing.
- Full-time team: Startups that apply for P18 should have two full-time founders. This should not be a side hustle. We look for founders with skills and products that people love; entrepreneurs that are deeply passionate and who possess a tremendous work ethic.
- Innovation: This does not necessarily mean they have to be technology-driven companies; we measure innovation as introducing a new process that solves an issue, or a technology that is the intellectual property of its founders. FYI: We’re industry agnostic!
As always, the applicants will go through a competitive process of internal and external evaluation committees. Also, this time around, the team will be leading personal interviews with the startups founders as part of the evaluation process.
The call opened on March 21st and the startups applying must demonstrate their innovative ideas, have a global vision, traction to scale into global markets and must fill the application before April 25th at midnight (AST/UTC-4).
During the program, the entrepreneurs will be provided with resources that can help them monitor the growth and structure of the companies to ensure a successful scalability to other markets, while connecting them with potential corporate clients.
Hernández added that, “Most of the times, underrepresented founders are rejected due to racial bias and discrimination. Our goal is to promote a diverse accelerator for entrepreneurs from all over the world and empower them through education, business connections, investment opportunities and offer them a community that goes beyond the generation in which they participate while, at the same time, it transcends the physical space.”
The official cohort will be announced mid-May and the 20-week intensive program will begin by the end of June.
The P18 international acceleration program has graduated over 200 local and international companies, of which the local companies BrainHi, Tasty Smart, Brands Of, Amasar, Sirena Patterns, Uva! stand out; and the international companies The Live Green Co.; Syrona Health, Nilus, among many others.
Since its launch, the program has received more than 4,500 applications from over 60 countries and 65% of the foreign companies that have participated in the program maintain operations on the island. On the other hand, 85% of the companies that have passed through parallel18 continue to operate.
For more information about P18, you can visit the website https://parallel18.com/genx/ or send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .