Kate shares her extensive experience and gave a lot of useful advice for startups.
Let's start with the main question:
What is the best way to get into accelerator, what are the standard and non-standard ways and approaches?
First of all, before choosing a accelerator you need to understand the focus of the accelerator and the focus of the startup, which means you need to be clear about the benefits the startup will receive. Study all the terms and conditions of the accelerator.
Networking is our everything! Not less important will be an opportunity to find contacts in the accelerator, who can represent your startup and your team. This can be a mentor, an investor, a FAUNDER, a member of the accelerator team. A person who is part of the accelerator ecosystem, whose opinion inspires the trust of the accelerator's investment team.
Don't be afraid to ask the Invest team to introduce you to one of their existing portfolio companies to learn about their experience with the program, its value, etc.
An important point is communication skills and a sufficient level of English.
What new trends are lining up among startups in 2021?
The format of startups has changed somewhat in recent years, and this is most likely due to the situation in the world, in particular the pandemic and our way of life in these conditions. So startups have started to develop very actively in the areas of digital health, wellness, future of work, productivity tools fintech, at-home fitness, etc.
What is the current focus for software start-ups?
Today the gas pedal is focused on healthcare and its automation, the development of at-home solutions, remote work, and, of course, gaming.
What to do if a startup is refused an investment?
Each time a accelerator denies an investment, it has a list of reasons and comments, which are necessarily provided to the startup team. So it's very important to listen to comments and work through all recommendations, advice and feedback from the accelerator, and not to disappear "for a year" and cut off communication, but rather keep in touch, show momentum and updates. And of course try to resubmit and believe in your success, because there are cases when a startup only gets into a accelerator on the fourth try.
So believe in yourself and your idea, never give up, and success is guaranteed!