757 Accelerate, a mentor-driven program that helps startups grow, reported that its 11 alumni companies have generated more than $3.5 million in revenue and added more than 48 jobs to the regional economy.
The nonprofit accelerator program operated its second 12-week course last fall. The program provides promising startup founders $20,000 in capital without taking equity. The alumni have raised more than $10 million of investment capital since finishing the program, according to a 2019 757 Accelerate impact report.
The entrepreneurs can continue leveraging 757 Accelerate resources and network long after the formal training ends, according to a news release.
“757 Accelerate helped us improve our business acumen, build our team, and refine our sales process,” Lee Lesley, co-founder of Addison Weeks, a jewelry and hardware retailer, said in the news release. “The most important change for us, however, was the connections we made within the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem.”
Evans McMillion, 757 Accelerate’s executive director, said: “We at 757 Accelerate are excited about what our alumni founders have accomplished and feel lucky to have played a role on their entrepreneurial journey.”
The program relies on regional collaboration. Since the program began, 757 Accelerate said more than 170 mentors representing more than 30 industries have spent more than 680 hours helping the 11 teams grow their businesses.
“We continue to focus on building an inclusive ecosystem that supports the growth of all founders, including women, people of color, and military vets,” said Monique Adams, 757 Accelerate board chair. “We are proud that over half of the 757 Accelerate alumni companies have underrepresented founders on their teams.”
757 Accelerate is already receiving applications for its third cohort that runs Aug. 24-Nov. 20. For more information: 757accelerate.org.