You may want to know which one to explore: startup Incubators Vs Accelerators! Most startups are found to be less fit for being an accelerator and more fit for being an incubator. New entrepreneurs are exposed and find themselves lost in tough business jargon like venture capital, seed funding, crowdfunding, angel investors, etc. Entrepreneurs previously had the misconception of assuming the use of incubator and accelerator interchangeably in the form of synonyms, which is incorrect.
Startups are provided with adequate guidance from both programs to advance their business strategies and models. Their primary objective is to provide support to startups to improve their value and attract investors in huge numbers. However, there are some key differences between incubators and accelerators.
Startup incubator vs accelerator
Startups, during their early stages, avail themselves of support from incubators. Startups are aggressive in reaching the marketplace but without any proper direction for transitioning to reality from innovative ideas or business models to follow. Existing companies can enjoy improved growth with the help of accelerators by having business models and ideas in place.
A good amount of resources and time are invested by incubators to help advance local startups. However, they end up finding ways to help the intellectual property obtain a license or create jobs. Less pressure is on incubators to deliver fast-growing startups since their charter is limited to supporting and boosting local startups. Hence, a less scalable or slow-growing business can be a candidate for the incubator.
On the other hand, a more formal and traditional approach is taken by accelerators to enter the program. For select program slots, participants are to make applications. Moreover, the programs are quite competitive, since only the top startups are selected by the accelerator from all over the country. Also, the startup needs to show quick growth ability within months and be investable and scalable.
This is one factor to be considered when researching startup incubators vs. accelerators. Open-ended timelines are preferred by incubators, and they focus on startup longevity and not much on the quick development of the company. They also mentor startups for about a year and a half or so. However, accelerators operate for a given period, generally about 3–4 months. Startups are expected to develop their businesses within this timeframe with the mentor support and capital offered. On completion of the program, new startups are provided with several opportunities to lure investors.
Hence, it becomes crucial to undertake thorough research on startup incubators vs accelerators to know which one to choose.