MassChallenge Announces 50th Cohort

A cohort of 229 startups from 20 countries are invited to participate in MassChallenge’s 50th startup accelerator program where they will receive democratized access to the closed networks that have characterized the startup industry for decades.

JUNE 28, 2021 (AUSTIN, TX; BOSTON, MA; HOUSTON, TX; PROVIDENCE, RI) – MassChallenge, the global for innovators, today welcomed  229 early-stage startups to MassChallenge’s US-based early-stage accelerator programs in Austin, Boston, Houston, and Providence (Ri). This cohort marks the Boston-based non-profit’s fiftieth accelerator program. Learn more about the cohort here.

The startups invited to participate in this year’s program have been through a rigorous two-round selection process that included more than one-thousand expert judges. The cohort represents 26 industries and 20 countries; nearly 20% of startups are from outside the United States, 47% of the cohort have at least one BIPOC founder, and 48% have at least one female founder.

“The participating founders and their startups represent innovation at its core. From addressing mental health, to electric vehicles, and new ways to pay for education; these entrepreneurs will greatly impact how we effectively and efficiently get back into the world and keeps each other safe. I am incredibly impressed with the incoming cohort and their proven ability to leverage the intersection of business and technology to create sustainable change.” said Cait Brumme, senior vice president of MassChallenge Early Stage. “Most impressive is the geographic distribution of the cohort with nearly 20% coming from outside of the Unites States and 88% of the US-based startups are headquartered outside of California. Never has it been clearer that the ideas and talent to bring innovations to life come from all corners of the world.”

MassChallenge’s world-class network of investors, serial entrepreneurs, corporate executives, and academics evaluated applications based on each startup’s ability to demonstrate high impact and high potential in their fields. The 2021 cohort reflects an exceptional cross-section of innovators from all industries including:

  • 40% High Tech
  • 33% Healthcare and Life sciences
  • 17% General, which includes materials, hardware, retail and consumer goods
  • 7% Social Impact
  • 3% Cleantech and Energy

MassChallenge’s 2021 cohort represents several emerging industry trends including:

  • Enterprise Tech and Digital Health are surging
  • Artificial intelligence and machine learning is here to stay
  • Startup activity is booming outside Silicon Valley

At the core of these early-stage businesses is the entrepreneurial spirit of their founders. Entrepreneurial spirit is the unique blend of optimism, passion, and drive that gets founders and their businesses through the daunting early days,” said Jon Nordby, Managing Director of MassChallenge Texas. “What we see across the trends of this cohort is a direct reflection of the world we have lived in for the past nearly year-and-a-half where we saw old problems laid bare and new problems emerge in the face of inequality, injustice, and a global pandemic. There are more entrepreneurs coming from every corner of the world and all walks of life because they have seen the problems, have visions of a better future, and the knowledge of where to ask for help. MassChallenge is here to provide them the access and there is no better place for that.”

Through MassChallenge’s zero-equity model startups will accelerate their businesses by leveraging focused goal setting, access to key players in the industry, and a supportive, successful peer community around them. Through carefully curated coursework and a committed team to support participating founders will get access to a set of propriety tools and knowledge bases that will strengthen a startup’s readiness to fundraise, increase revenue, and grow a team.

“This year’s program is bringing out the best elements MassChallenge and the community have to offer. By leveraging the virtual learnings from last year we are better equipped to connect entrepreneurs to MassChallenge’s global network of startups, experts, corporations, and communities to grow and transform businesses and economies,” said Hope Hopkins, Managing Director for MassChallegne New England.  “I’m excited to help this year’s founders accelerate the growth of their startups and shine a light on their work. It’s our intention to provide a strong foundation for all entreprenuers to create meaningful change.”

At the end of this year’s program, startups will have the opportunity to compete for equity free cash prizes and grants in sums that can add up to $100,000 which will be awarded during the 2021 MassChallenge US Showcase & Awards event happening October 28, 2021. To save the date and be added to the invitation list, click here

To learn more about the 2021 cohort; who they are, where they’re from, and their backgrounds, click here

To learn more about startup industry trends from MassChallenge’s 2021 application cycle, click here.

To learn more about MassChallenge’s industry tracks, click here.

About MassChallenge

MassChallenge is the global network for innovators. Headquartered in the United States with seven locations worldwide, MassChallenge equips bold entrepreneurs to disrupt the status quo and to create meaningful change. Since launching in 2009, more than 2,900 MassChallenge alumni have raised $8.6B in funding, generated $3.6B in revenue, and created more than 186,000 total jobs. Learn more about MassChallenge at