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Do I need to speak English to enter the program?
We are looking for smart ideas and great teams that have the potential to become global leaders. In order to take full advantage of the program, participants should be able to communicate in English – mentors, speakers and teams are oftentimes from abroad, so you should be able to understand them and be able to communicate in turn.

What is the Acceleratum Venture Capital Fund?
Acceleratum is an accelerator that combines a full-time 13 week mentor-led bootcamp program with seed investment. It is aimed at early stage high-potential startups, and will provide them with a comprehensive set of entrepreneurial resources, including mentoring, expert business advice, hands-on technical assistance, and investment capital.

How much do you invest?
Our standard program consists of three stages – the first and second acceleration stages and a seed stage. Initially we invest €25,000 for 8% equity, followed by another up to €75,000 as a convertible loan and up to €100,000 more at the seed stage. The goal is to shape a product or an idea well enough to attract larger investors at the end of the program.

What do you get from this?
Against its investments, Acceleratum becomes a minority shareholder in each company getting anywhere between 8% and 15% at the acceleration stage and up to a cumulative 20-30% equity for fully funded (EUR 200k) companies.
What is the application process for Acceleratum?
We are running quarterly cycles of our program. Teams are asked to fill-in a short online questionnaire about their team, market and project. Each application window is open for a few weeks. At the close of the application window we review all submitted applications and short-list about 50 projects for interview. The top 25 teams are invited to our Selection Days, where they first meet with founders from other Acceleratum funded companies and then pitch their ideas to the Investment Committee. We accept 10-15 teams to the program each time.

Do I need a business plan to apply?
No. We make our decisions based on the application form and personal interviews. Even more, if you happen to have a business plan, we prefer not to see it.

Do you only fund teams and projects from Latvia?
No, anyone from anywhere can apply. However, teams will be expected to be in Riga during the 3-month program and to register a legal entity in Latvia, in order to receive the funding from Acceleratum.

If I don’t have a team, can I still apply for the program?
While we will not automatically discard a single-founder with a great idea, without a team, chances of getting into the program decrease dramatically. We strongly encourage you to seek co-founders to balance your skill-set and apply as a fully fledged team.

Can the team work on other projects while in the program?
No. We want the teams in our program to be passionate, focused and committed to what they are doing.
What can we use the money for? Will the founders get any salary?
It’s entirely up to your discretion and best judgement. Efficient use of funds will impact positively the Investment Committee and ongoing investments. Founders may take a salary and charge business related expenses, as they deem appropriate. The leaner you are in spending, the better the chances are for your startup.

What should the investment be used for? Would any funding go to pay for the services, provided by the fund (office space, professional services, etc.)?

The investment funds should be used to support the development of an impressive product or service, so that it can attract further funding. The costs include general operating expenses for a company, travel and accommodation, founders’ living expenses (via their salaries), etc. The rent, back office services and other program related expenses are charged at cost. The full package is currently estimated at about EUR 2,000 per company for the 3-month program.

What happens if a company does not progress to the next stage in the program, and there is still money available from the previous rounds?
Not proceeding to the next stage in the program does not mean the company has failed, the founders may still continue working on their project and make a big splash in the end. The money that Acceleratum invests is for equity or quasi equity and stays in the company. We will not request that the funding be paid back, but we will keep our stake in the company, and share in its success when it comes.

What if a project gets funding on the first stage of acceleration, but does not enter the second one? Can it still apply for  the second acceleration stage or the seed stage later on if it makes progress?
Not entering into the second phase of acceleration or not getting seed financing from Acceleratum is not the end of the world. We will be looking to preserve our value by assisting these projects to raise additional financing and to continue improving and growing. The 3-month benchmark is not cut in stone and teams have a few extra months to show us better progress. Still preserving the momentum is important, so the longer it takes you to reach a next milestone, the slimmer your chances to impress us become.

Will you sign an NDA? How do I know you won’t steal my idea?
No, we won’t sign an NDA. No accelerator would. You can take our word that we’re certainly not in the business of stealing ideas, as this would certainly damage our reputation irreparably.