Accelerator and Incubator Programs

Accelerator and incubator programs offer a variety of benefits to company owners, in some cases including funding.

There is much confusion on the terminology between a business incubator and accelerator and there are no universally agreed upon definitions. In some cases, the terms are used interchangeably. However, generally speaking, accelerators “accelerate” the growth of an existing company (that has traction with customers) over a defined, short period of time (typically 8-12 weeks). On the other hand, incubators “incubate” ideas with the hope of building out the idea into a launchable and scalable business. This process can last for months up to two years.

Another distinguishing difference between an accelerator and an incubator is the provision of capital. Accelerators will often provide a modest amount of capital (say, $20,000) in exchange for a small equity stake (2-8%). Incubators, on the other hand, generally do not provide capital because and therefore do not seek an equity stake in a company. The good news is that incubator programs are often run and/or funded by universities, nonprofits or foundations, meaning that the programs are financially accessible to many entrepreneurs or companies.

Search the Resource Navigator for to find incubator and accelerator programs in the DFW area.

Additionally, take a look at these programs available in other parts of Texas and beyond.