Is There a Bubble in Accelerators?

You can’t swing a dead cat without hearing about accelerators. Here is another on this growing portion of the start-up / venture investing ecosystem. From Zoran Basich of the WSJ’s Venture Capital Dispatch:

The early success of seed-investment program Y Combinator has led to a wave of new incubators and accelerators, all hoping to capitalize on a Web investment boom and cheap-to-build technology that can quickly make fast, nimble start-ups attractive acquisition targets.

One of the latest incubators to emerge is in not in any of the traditional technology hubs, but in Portland, Ore., where a longtime venture capitalist is putting the finishing touches on a $3 million city-sponsored fund. The Portland Seed Fund will provide start-ups with mentoring and training, as well as an initial investment of $25,000 to $50,000 and possible follow-on funding, VentureWire reported Monday.

The so-called Y Combinator model, in which small amounts of money as well as mentoring and networking opportunities are sprinkled among a dozen or more promising businesses, is gaining more attention from investors.

Is the growth of accelerators a bubble? Is it driven by the economics of software, apps, and other web services? Is it filling the hole that VC left and competing where some angels fear to tread? Can 100 of these be successful? (some, such as Rob Shedd, report over 100 ‘accelerators’).

via Y Combinator Success Leads To Copycats, Incubator Raiders – Venture Capital Dispatch – WSJ.


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