From idea-stage startups to mature small businesses with a disruptive higher ed solution, you’re invited
Led by award-winning startup and small business guru Joe Abraham and global team of advisors, catalysts, and influencers, the incubator at Beyond Academics exists to bring much-needed, high-value solutions and innovations to higher education.
Interested founders complete an initial application that is reviewed by the incubator team at Beyond Academics. Selected candidates are invited to a follow-up interview and assessment stage. From there, qualifying companies are invited to Pitch Day where a panel of high ed experts including C-level college executives vote on the best ideas for the market.
The top 5 startup ideas and top 2 existing small businesses are invited into a 12-week accelerator (small business) or 16-week incubator (startups). These companies go through a comprehensive engineering process which includes:
- Brand positioning, messaging, and audience segmentation
- Creative makeover (design, video, digital marketing footprint)
- Business model generation (including market-validated pricing)
- Viability analysis (including voice-of-the-customer insight)
- Product development / R&D roadmap
- Talent acquisition and stewardship plan
- Go To Market strategy and positioning (value proposition)
- Revenue generation systems
- Financial proforma and capital plan
- Customer pitch deck preparation
- Investor pitch deck preparation
- Customer and investor presentation training
- Business infrastructure setup (location, IT, accounting etc)
Each startup cohort is supported by a team of in-house staff at Beyond Academics, a full-service digital marketing & creative agency, technology team, and advisory team. The advisory team is hand-selected to match the unique needs of each venture, and each advisor brings decades of industry experience (along with a world-class Rolodex) to help the venture succeed.
Graduation & Post Graduation
Not every company will make it through the entire 12-week or 16-week process. For those that do, we organize pitch day with two very important audiences.
- Pitch Day 1: CUSTOMERS: We invite potential buyers from our global network to anonymously listen to your final pitch. They provide us insight into their willingness to purchase your product/service. That information is provided to you to build into your investor pitch deck for pitch day 2.
- Pitch Day 2: INVESTORS: We invite the deep pockets of venture capital and big brands already involved in higher ed to hear about your innovation. If they like what they see and hear, they’ll engage in conversation about partnering with you. We’ll guide that entire process – from interest to closed funding round.
Companies selected for the incubator and accelerator at Beyond Academics are entering into a long-term partnership with us. The 12 to 16-week process is just the beginning of a journey we embark on together to serve higher education.
Applications for the January 2021 cohort will open on this page on or before October 31st 2020.
Projects currently in the incubator/accelerator include Smart Panda Tools, a TeleAdvisory app, a crowdsourcing platform, and a higher ed professional development system.