dlab, a blockchain and DLT accelerator network founded in 2018, announced today a new global incubator program for early-stage blockchain companies. Set to start this spring, the new virtual-based program called ‘dlab INCUBATE’ will complement dlab’s more traditional startup ‘ACCELERATOR’ offering.
Selected companies will receive a small pre-seed investment accompanied by dlab team mentorship and lightweight virtual programming. Whereas dlab ACCELERATE will focus on spurring product, business growth, and fundraising readiness, the new virtual incubator will focus on building and testing.
“While recruiting for our second accelerator cohort last fall, we looked at well over 200 companies working in the blockchain space. We interviewed over 100 founders. We laughed. We cried. We questioned. We learned a lot! Ultimately, we narrowed the list down to six blockchain startups that we really, really liked. Throughout that process, we spoke to a lot of passionate entrepreneurs and super sharp developers. Some of the most memorable teams that didn’t make the final cut were just a bit too early for us to write a check. Being early is hard. We’d like to accelerate the speed at which good ideas can be tested and provide support for great teams who are at different stages. To address this, we’ve decided to try something new in 2020. We’ll be delaying the start of our third dlab ACCELERATE cohort until August in order to roll out something new: a wholly virtual boot camp-like program that combines pre-seed funding with a lightweight version of our accelerator process, administered remotely.”
– The dlab Team
dlab is a collaborative venture between tech VC, SOSV, and EMURGO, the commercial venture builder for the Cardano ecosystem. dlab’s team is made up of investors, product builders, and technology experts from both organizations.
How It Works
- dlab will select up to 20 projects to work over a 12-week period (May through July). Applications will be accepted through the end of April. Priority consideration will be given to those that apply by March 31.
- Funding will be provided to each company in the form of a $25k uncapped SAFE ($16k in cash plus $9k in program costs). dlab can also help with incorporation if needed.
- Every week, companies will have a scheduled check-in with dlab program leadership to review mutually agreed upon OKRs; discuss progress, and get feedback and help where it’s most needed.
- In addition, a number of SOSV and EMURGO staff and mentors will offer up their time via an office hours system.
- Once a month, companies will present their product and a brief status update via video to the wider group of SOSV and EMURGO leadership and select mentors, along with their fellow startups. This will be followed by Q&A. This is an opportunity to get extended feedback from market experts and investors, answer questions, and make new connections.
- dlab staff will provide a weekly curated reading list and suggested educational materials culled from its library and resource network.
- Occasional opportunities to present at future showcases and events.
- Companies who show great promise and that find the relationship to be mutually beneficial will be given priority consideration for the next ACCELERATE program (dlab’s premier program; with up to $200k in additional funding plus follow-on).