One of the most common features of the tech landscape today is the startup accelerator.
There are over 200 separate programs in the US alone.
The model encompasses mentorship, funding, access to a network of other entrepreneurs, and a space for entrepreneurs and their ideas to mature in safe surroundings.
That potentially lucrative combination has seduced investors and investees alike and being accepted into an accelerator program can be a springboard for success.
Not only are top tech accelerators behind the success of talent such as Reddit, Airbnb and Dropbox but they facilitate introductions to institutional investors upon graduation from the program.
However, these successes have acted as the catalyst for an influx of new accelerators, either stand-alone programs or an attempt by a larger corporation to form an innovation lab.
Whilst that provides entrepreneurs with a plethora of top tech accelerators to choose from, the challenge is to determine which ones are genuinely capable of adding significant value in the early days of a business’ lifecycle.
As more accelerators are created, the debate is to whether some are just trying to earn a quick buck, versus building a model which is sustainable for startups, entrepreneurs and investors alike.
To aid with the selection process, we have put together a list of the 100 top tech accelerators and more importantly, the leaders behind those programs around the world.
This list of 100 leaders, focuses on the driving forces behind the top tech accelerators in the world today.
To have made the list, these leaders and their accelerators must have a stellar track record in the following areas:
1) Graduate valuation: The equity valuation and venture funding of alumni companies is an important factor when judging accelerators as it allows the entrepreneur to get an accurate picture of a program’s success rate.
2) Learning environment: For first-time entrepreneurs, knowledge is the single biggest currency. The top accelerators should be able to provide startups with the right contacts, knowledge pool and mentorship scheme.
3) Exits: How have accelerators’ companies exited? Acquisitions, mergers, IPOs, shut-downs; an accelerator must be transparent about its track record in order to prove its legitimacy in this space.
4) Startup satisfaction: Qualitative reviews are just as important as the figures. A startup must be able to feel at ease with its mentors and overall experience in order to facilitate trust and implement success.
It takes time, patience, responsibility and vision to continually seek out the next tech startup stars and allow them to develop in a sustainable manner.
Which is why these 100 leaders deserve recognition.
They have the exciting, and critical, task of meeting, encouraging and supporting the companies driving tech’s next leap forward.
To find out who is leading the top tech accelerators globally, view the infographic above.