Betatron – Hong Kong’s First Non-Vertical Accelerator Program Providing Seed Funding
Betatron is Hong Kong’s first non-vertical accelerator programme providing both seed-funding and mentorship for startups. The program will be run bootcamp style with an intensive schedule focused on the startup’s fundamental KPIs and progress.
It will launch early January 2017 and will take on five startups in their first cohort.
We spoke to the Programme Manager for Betatron, Michael Kerr, to learn more about it.
What type of startups are you looking for?
Our mission over the three-month programme is to make your startup a viable and investable business. For this to occur, we are looking for teams with a developed product that we can work with. Again, we only have three months, so each startup needs to assess whether they feel they are at an appropriate stage. Additionally, our goal is to help the Hong Kong startup ecosystem and back local talent. As such, we aren’t limiting applicants to a specific industry or vertical. If you have a promising product – you can apply!
What do the startups receive when they get accepted?
Each startup will receive US$30,000 in funding and will get dedicated workspace for three members of their team at the ‘Betatron Lab’ in WeWork, Tower 535, Causeway Bay. In addition to focusing on the startups’ possible challenges, such as identifying their unique value proposition, search for product market fit, etc., we will also be focusing on the founders themselves and their distinct needs, with coaching on sales, negotiation, personal branding, PR and communication.
Teams will be given access to a selection of hand-picked, experienced entrepreneurs, founders and industry experts. Each will personally mentor the startups during the three-month programme, helping the startups to successfully scale their businesses. As well, the founders will get access and exposure to our partners, some of Hong Kong’s most prominent venture capital firms and investors. Over the three- programme, I feel the startups will be able to develop solid relationships with the people associated with these firms, which I know will be invaluable for the remainder of their startup journey and beyond.
The programme concludes with “Pitch Day”, where startups present their products to an audience of local and non-local investors, potential partners and media.
You mentioned your partners, who are the founders of Betatron?
Betatron has five founding partners who are all based in Hong Kong — IC Studio, MindWorks Ventures, Vectr Ventures, CoCoon Ignite Ventures and Aria Group. I like to say that the partners of Betatron are like a great startup. The majority of the partners come from very similar backgrounds. They grew up in Hong Kong knowing of each other and often crossing paths during their secondary school years. Most went off to university outside in Hong Kong but came back to make a difference locally. That said, each partner brings their own unique skill-sets, network, and industry expertise to the programme, which I know will add tremendous value to all the startups we ultimately choose.
Sounds great, how do you apply?
Applications are open now and will close on Friday 25th November. To apply visit: betatron.co/apply