Applications for Huckletree’s Alpha Accelerator now open

Programme will assemble mentors and entrepreneurs to prepare cohort for series A funding
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(L-R) Mary Liu and Caroline Williams, junee

19 January 2022

Applications for Huckletree’s pre-seed Alpha Accelerator programme are now open. Start-ups with at least one founder from an underrepresented background that are based in the UK and Ireland have been invited to apply.

In line with the programmes’ theme, ‘Urban Futures’, Huckletree is calling for applications from pre-seed start-ups who are focused on building tech solutions that will help cities around the world run more efficiently and sustainably. This includes areas like energy, transportation, mobility, emissions, cloud-based solutions for smart cities and building design and structure.

Current urban population around the world is 55%, with research by the UN showing this figure could rise by as much as 68% by 2050. These figures showcase a need for urban innovation and re-thinking human existence in these areas. Huckletree said it is focusing both its programming and events firmly towards addressing the challenge.

 

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Running from 15 March to 3 June, the programme will assemble industry-leading mentors and serial entrepreneurs to lead the cohort through rigorous preparation for series A funding, including weekly workshops, one-to-one sessions with investors, and group mentoring. At the close of the 12-week programme, the cohort will pitch to more than 100 investors at an investor expo.

Now in its ninth year, the pro-bono programme has seen eight cohorts raise a combined £15 million in funding, create 250 jobs, and go through two acquisitions.

Recent participants in the programme include Mary Liu and Caroline Williams, CEO and COO of junee who raised £250,000 at the end of 2021 to build a borrow-and-return system of reusable takeaway packaging which reduces the amount of single-use plastic used by restaurants.

Williams and Liu said: “The programme was great, and we really enjoyed the workshops focused on operations, commercials and hiring. The continued practice with Huckletree’s network of friendly investors really helped us with our pitch. We would definitely recommend the Alpha Accelerator to founders looking to raise funds in 2022.”

“At Huckletree, we’re committed to breaking down the barriers that underrepresented groups face when entering the entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said Gabriela Hersham, CEO and co-founder, Huckletree. “From gender and race to sexuality, education, and neurodivergence, Alpha supports a diverse cohort of entrepreneurs to access everything they need to supercharge their business. From FoodTech pioneers to FinTech challengers, since 2014, we have housed and supported over 5,000 innovative companies and forward-thinking entrepreneurs looking to change our world for the better.”

“This year, we will be supporting pre-seed start-ups who are focused on building tech solutions that will help cities around the world run more efficiently and sustainably,” said Aislinn Mahon, Alpha Accelerator lead & general manager, Huckletree Dublin. “This includes areas like energy, transportation, mobility, emissions, cloud-based solutions for smart cities and building design and structure. We’re excited to explore new ideas, and help support the next generation of entrepreneurs in Ireland and the UK.”

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