For the next stage of growth, Start Tank Boston will be spun out and combine forces with MassChallenge. The MassChallenge mission to catalyze a startup renaissance by helping early-stage entrepreneurs win is 100% aligned with everything Start Tank has stood for since inception. Together, well be able to provide Boston-area entrepreneurs with the strongest program and resources.
MassChallenge will acquire key elements of the Start Tank Boston program including:
The Startups: The current cohort at Start Tank Boston has been provided space at MassChallenges Boston headquarters in the Innovation & Design Building until June 1st. MassChallenge waived application fees for the outstanding Start Tank applicant pool, and many applicants and current startups to the Start Tank Boston program have applied to join the 2015 MassChallenge accelerator program, which will begin on the third week of June. Future Start Tank Boston cohorts will be unified with the MassChallenge cycle and will be located at MassChallenge Boston headquarters.
Program Content & Relationships: MassChallenge will integrate Start Tank Boston program content and relationships including its investor profile database, access to subject-matter-experts/volunteer resources, startup job board, and other partnerships.
Functional Expertise: MassChallenge will inherit Start Tank Bostons mentor base and designate functional champions to help advise startups and develop programming. Jordan Fliegel and I will be funding champions, Brian Kalma will be design champion, Dan Slagen will be marketing champion, and champions for product, engineering, and sales will be appointed later this month. These functional champions and other PayPal mentors will join the existing group of MassChallenge mentors to further enhance the MassChallenge program. Click here for the list of MassChallenge champions.
Team: Start Tank Boston co-founders, Karen Landry and I, will assume advisory roles at MassChallenge to facilitate the integration and grow the program.
Note that the scope of this agreement applies to Start Tanks founding Boston location. Other global Start Tank programs are not affected by this agreement.
On a personal note, Id like to thank everyone who has volunteered their time, efforts, and expertise to Start Tank Boston. I met so many passionate people and worked with some incredibly inspiring entrepreneurs solving tough problems. Through this process, Ive found kindred spirits that share the same vision, and it has been an amazing and personally rewarding journey that I would repeat in a heartbeat.
As for MassChallenge, Ive been a big proponent since its inception and have valued my time as a MassChallenge judge and mentor for the past 3 years. Not coincidentally, the first 5 startups we hosted at Start Tank were graduates of MassChallenge, and its fitting that we are coming full circle.
I am excited to take on a more active advisor role at MassChallenge as Funding Champion in order to a create a new funding fast track program to quickly match entrepreneurs with good-fit investors. We look forward to expanding this benefit to all 617 MassChallenge and 49 Start Tank Boston alumni.
Karen and I will be in the MassChallenge headquarters on a weekly basis and will be setting up office hours to brainstorm and chat about anything and everything that is on the minds of entrepreneurs and investors. I look forward to spending time with all of you!