Matthew Neville

Global tech startup accelerator programme launches in Sunderland

The UK chapter of a global pre-accelerator programme, designed to help early-stage technology startups grow, has launched from Sunderland this month.

Spanning over six weeks and delivered entirely digitally, FoundersBoost UK, is a mentor-driven programme designed to support promising early-stage tech startups. The programme prepares founders for accelerators, investment, and revenue in a format which takes no equity or fees from the startups that are accepted onto the course.

The UK initiative, which runs concurrently in several regions around the world, including USA, Canada, Europe and Africa, will see eight budding businesses from across the UK, including one from North East England, take part in its Spring cohort.

Following a “highly competitive” application process which saw over 150 startups apply for a place on the cohort, eight companies have made the cut offering innovative solutions to tackle problems in areas from health and wellbeing to training and accessibility.

One such startup is Durham based, female co-founded, Train Air which provides a platform to connect buyers of training to those who deliver it. Hoping to be the “Airbnb of the training industry”, the company will aim to emulate many graduate FoundersBoost companies that have gone on to raise investment and scale following the programme.

Programme lead and startup and growth manager at Sunderland Software City, Mark Gardner, said: “Helping these promising businesses gain access to experienced insights and advice from those who have been there and done it, will be massively beneficial for our cohort, at a crucial stage in their development.

“We had our first onboarding session this week and we’re very excited to see what this diverse and quality group of budding entrepreneurs can achieve. The sky really is the limit!”

As well as the cohort gaining exposure to prominent startup advisors from the USA and around the globe, FoundersBoost UK teams will benefit from access to leading specialists from the North East’s own technology startup ecosystem.

This will include access to Software City’s own in-house pool of digital technology experts, who will also work to collate learnings and connections from the programme to support Sunderland’s current digital technology sector.

Michael Dunn, Head of Enterprise, Sunderland Software City, added: “At Sunderland Software City we’re on a mission to help Sunderland achieve its ambitious vision of being a leading smart city. To achieve this, we need to continue to grow as a city with ongoing initiatives that will help brilliant businesses to thrive.”

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