Startup Advice

Investor Atlanta Daniel on seven things founders should know before joining an accelerator

Dinushi Dias /

Signal Ventures founder Atlanta Daniel

Signal Ventures founder Atlanta Daniel

Before applying for an accelerator program, there are seven key considerations startup founders should make, according to investor Atlanta Daniel.

Daniel, the co-founder of $10 million Signal Ventures, has researched programs around the country to provide local startups with insights into how homegrown and international accelerators compare on factors such as industry vertical and the amount of funding and equity exchanged.

“Some Australian programs now go back as far as seven years and we can see clear successes emerge from those alumni,” she writes in Medium.

“The market leading programs in terms of brand, volume and alumni success are: muru-D, Startmate, Melbourne Accelerator Program (MAP), INCUBATE and the Slingshot programs.”

Daniel, who’s also a startup advocate for the Creative Enterprise Australia accelerator and investment fund, says founders should look at the following factors before entering a program:

• program structure;

• mentors;

• alumni support and network;

• brand association; and

• capital raising assistance.

She says it’s also important to consider what vertical the accelerator focuses on, “to see if there’s a density of expertise in their company’s area”, and “the deal”, or in other words,“how much capital and equity”.

Daniel believes accelerator programs will continue to grow around the country with interest from universities, government, corporates and international players in this space increasing.

“I don’t think we’ve reached peak accelerator yet,” she says.

“Accelerators are valuable and investors are keen for the deal flow.”

*This article was updated on May 1, 2017 at 1pm. 

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Dinushi Dias

Dinushi Dias is a freelance journalist and a former StartupSmart reporter and multimedia content producer. She is the co-founder of Melbourne-based production house Dinushi & Power.

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