Techstars, a worldwide network that helps entrepreneurs succeed, and blockchain advisory firm Alchemist, have announced the inaugural class of their 13-week Alchemist Blockchain Techstars Accelerator, which will be hosted in New York. With a successful track record of grooming blockchain entrepreneurs and helping them build and scale, Alchemist’s industry expertise will underpin Techstars’ first-ever blockchain-focused accelerator program to help support and grow 10 blockchain startups, including Alkemi, AnyLedger, Autom(8), Blockade Games, Embleema, Gilded, Paperchain, Paperstreet, Trixta, and Veracity Protocol.
After searching the globe for founders passionate about building a more open internet and financial system, these ten participants were selected among hundreds of applicants based on which companies had the strongest founding team members, a deep understanding of the problem they are attempting to solve, and a large enough market to disrupt.
“Successfully building a ‘traditional’ startup is hard enough, and blockchain startup founders face all the complexities of traditional startups and then some, as these new models are being pioneered. We’ve launched this blockchain-specific program in partnership with Alchemist to support blockchain entrepreneurs in their journey through this emerging industry, and engage a unique network of worldwide mentors with blockchain experience and expertise. Together, Techstars and Alchemist will work to advance this select group of extremely viable startups in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industries.”
Alchemist Blockchain Techstars Accelerator will address key challenges that blockchain founders face when trying to build and scale their blockchain business, as well as give them access to over a hundred of the top minds in blockchain with mentors including: Alchemist Founder and CEO, Steven Nerayoff; Chief Strategy Officer at Consensys, Sam Cassatt; Founder and CEO of professional services firm Wachsman, David Wachsman; Ethereum Core Developer, Lane Rettig; Monero Project Lead, Riccardo Spagni; Founder and CEO of Everledger, Leanne Kemp; and more. Over the course of the program, founders will gain access to unparalleled expertise in the nascent, yet rapidly growing, cryptocurrency and blockchain industries, focusing on blockchain infrastructure and protocol development, cryptocurrencies, security, and distributed applications across a variety of industries such as finance, IoT, education, real estate, retail, insurance, energy, health and wellness, and more.
“We’ve seen incredible advancements in blockchain and cryptocurrency over the last year, with development occurring across a wide range of industries. One of the pillars of our business is dedicated to connecting gifted blockchain entrepreneurs with the tools and resources they need to go-to-market with groundbreaking innovations. We are thrilled to be partnering with Techstars in order to build on our shared mission of helping promising blockchain startups build, fundraise, and drive adoption.”
The move to launch a dedicated blockchain accelerator in New York City acknowledges the specific challenges that blockchain founders face when trying to build and scale their blockchain business, including complex regulatory environments, rapidly changing technology landscapes and token design. Building on Techstars’ success to date running accelerator programs across the globe, Alchemist is uniquely positioned to help this class of startups navigate these challenges, having been an integral partner for dozens of blockchain innovators including Ethereum, tZero, Lisk, Aion, and ZCash.
Hasson added, “We’ve seen a radical shift in how companies can potentially be built using blockchain technology. New funding models, business models, and organizational design models are being tested and implemented in an attempt to build a more open Internet and financial system. It would be a remarkable thing to see one, or even several of our first program participants completely change the way we do business.”
Applications opened for the inaugural class of the Alchemist Blockchain Techstars Accelerator in July 2018. Comprehensive rounds of in-person interviews and pitching processes were carried out to whittle the hundreds of applicants down to the selected top 10.