Zeal announces 2018 Growth Accelerator

March 12, 2018

Up to four early-stage entrepreneurs will have the chance to jump-start their businesses through the 2018 Growth Accelerator program at the Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship.

“Zeal is looking for companies that are ready to scale, launching a new product or implementing new systems and processes,” said Ryan Oines, Zeal’s interim vice president. “This program is designed as a resource to help propel businesses into a new stage of growth and sustainability.”

Applications open today and will be accepted through May 11. The accelerator is a 12-week program starting June 15 and ending Sept. 13 with a pitch to potential investors and experienced entrepreneurs. Participants will have access to:

  • Full-day working-group sessions featuring guest experts.
  • Business coaching from Zeal’s entrepreneurs-in-residence and mentors.
  • Assistance with formalizing a strategic plan, needs assessment and business plan stress test.
  • Access to potential financing partners.
  • Opportunity for cash infusion through Zeal’s accelerator capital investment fund.

“These are the types of resources that can have a direct and significant impact on entrepreneurs’ scalability and ultimately the local community,” Oines said. “We’re fortunate at Zeal to be supported by such strong collaborative partners as we provide this outstanding opportunity.”

The Zeal Growth Accelerator program is sponsored through partnerships with The First National Bank in Sioux Falls, Eide Bailly, Woods Fuller, Midco and Interstate Office Products.

Applicants will be evaluated based on:

  • Team/capacity.
  • An identified market potential.
  • The plan to deliver a market solution.
  • Proven ability to capture opportunity.
  • Potential to be coached.
  • Business model.
  • Scalability.

“While anyone can apply, we’re targeting participants who already have established businesses and existing products or prototypes that have reached the level of a minimum viable product,” Oines said. “Businesses that are still conceptual can be considered, but we prefer those that have already progressed into operations.”

The application can be downloaded on Zeal’s website and must be submitted with a nonrefundable $99 fee.

To find more information or submit questions, visit the accelerator’s landing page realzeal.com/accelerator.

The 2017 Growth Accelerator participants at Zeal.

Zeal announces 2018 Growth Accelerator

Up to four early-stage entrepreneurs will have the chance to jump-start their businesses through the 2018 Growth Accelerator program at the Zeal Center for Entrepreneurship.

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