Mar 26, 2020 Official Announcement

Why the Accelerator Model is Broken—and how 500 Startups is Fixing it

No one would’ve envisioned me as a venture capitalist. I was raised in rural Wyoming, far from the high stakes and deep pockets of Wall Street and Silicon Valley. But from a young age, going against the grain was in my DNA. It’s what led me to San Francisco, and, ultimately, what drew me to 500 Startups. When I moved to San Francisco in 2012, I was working on my fourth startup and looking to join an accelerator. 500 immediately stood out to me, not only for their reputation as one of the top accelerators in Silicon Valley, but also because they seemed to be one of the few VCs at the time that recognized that true entrepreneurship was blind …


PUBLISHED BY
Mar 18, 2020 On Our Blog

Tools and Tips for Working Remotely From 500 & GitLab

On March 16th, 500 had the opportunity to lead a chat with Darren Murph, the Head of Working Remote at GitLab. Due to the novel COVID-19 virus, many companies are adapting their workforces to be partially, if not completely, remote. GitLab is currently one of the largest all-remote companies with the world, and we love just how transparent they have been regarding best practices and company policies. Here’s what they had to say to 500 portfolio companies looking for some advice in these rather unusual times. Tips From GitLab’s Head of Remote The biggest question when working remotely is how to hire and onboard someone new. What you should look for in an interviewee: Look for someone who is a …


PUBLISHED BY
Mar 3, 2020 On Our Blog

Ones to Watch in Sensors and AI

In the golden age of data, businesses in media, communication, and commerce were some of the first to adapt their operations to work directly with the newfound aggregation of consumer data. Sensors and AI, in particular, have become ubiquitous parts of the tech startup zeitgeist. We have a few startups in Batch 26 that are trying to not only demystify the overuse of terms like sensors and AI, but also utilize the technology for substantial change in the realms of travel, retail, and more.  Taking the Headache Out of Flight Delays – Pilota Not many founding teams can say that they have visited over 100 countries before diving into the travel business. The founding team at Pilota has an immense …


PUBLISHED BY
Feb 27, 2020 On Our Blog

Hospitality Tech as a Service

As sector agnostic investors, we get a first-hand look at tech-enabled startups across a number of different verticals. One which you may not have heard much about is HTaaS — or Hospitality Tech as a Service. We’ve recently partnered with LA Fund, an innovative hospitality-focused venture fund, to launch a one-week bootcamp for startups building products that have the potential to disrupt this space.  Recognizing the lack of support for tech-enabled hospitality companies, the LA Fund was created to help these startups fast-track their growth and connect them with the right industry leaders who can help them scale. We recently sat down with the founders of LA Fund, Lev Filiminov and Alex Balaban, to learn more about their inspiration for …


PUBLISHED BY
Feb 11, 2020 On Our Blog

Meet the Startups of Batch 26

We are excited to announce our 26th batch of companies to join our flagship seed accelerator in San Francisco. From social media analytics to sensors and AI and more, this group of 29 companies was chosen from over 3,000 applicants, representing a less than 1% acceptance rate.  As with every batch, we are continuing our commitment to discovering and backing the world’s most talented entrepreneurs, and recognizing that great founders come in all shades, genders and nationalities. Of the 29 companies in Batch 26, 37% come from outside of the U.S., including Brazil, Nigeria and India. 30% of the companies have a female founder and 70% have one or more founders who identify as a racial minority. Without further ado, …


PUBLISHED BY
Jan 31, 2020 On Our Blog

Enterprise customers want to work with startups. Here’s how to get in the door.

Guest Post: The following post is a sponsored guest post by Perry Light, the Market Connect Lead, North America of Oracle for Startups. All views and opinions represented in this post are the views and opinions of Oracle for Startups and do not represent those of 500 Startups or any of its staff or affiliates. If you would like to join Oracle for Startups, apply and use the code “500 Startups”.  As a startup founder, you are an evangelist. You mesmerize your audience with your conviction and entice them with visions of a better world that is available through an offering that only you can provide. Rather than salvation, it’s savings you dangle before a rapt audience—a paradise of pain …


PUBLISHED BY
Nov 27, 2019 On Our Blog

Ready to scale in Southeast Asia? Start in Singapore.

While people may think of Singapore as a top startup city, what they may not realize is that this city-state potentially has quite a bit more to offer as a local hub when looking to scale throughout the region. This fall, we kicked off Global Launch, a program aimed at building bridges between Singapore and the Silicon Valley. This two-way program brings Singaporean startups here to San Francisco for targeted immersion and education in the heart of the Silicon Valley, and sends another group of global startups to Singapore as they prepare entry into the Southeast Asian market.  We caught up with a few startups from Batch 1 of the Global Launch – SF Program, who have scaled in Singapore …


PUBLISHED BY
Nov 21, 2019 On Our Blog

Inside Batch 25 at 500 Startups

Guest Post: Rishika Jhamb is the Marketing Lead at Alluva. Under no circumstances should any of the below content be construed as legal, tax or investment advice from 500 Startups or any of its affiliates. Alluva at 500 Startups: What it was really like being a part of Batch 25 In March of 2019, Alluva was accepted into Batch 25 of 500 Startups. As part of the founding team at Alluva, my thoughts ranged from excitement at the incredible learning opportunity to worry about how challenging 500’s batches were rumored to be. The outcome was that it was both – and when you’re at Demo Day, you’re going to be grateful to the part that’s ‘too challenging’. What Alluva is …


PUBLISHED BY
Oct 3, 2019 Founder Stories and Insights

Inside 500: How Their Accelerator Helped Me Grow My Accounting-as-a-Service Company and Raise $2 Million

Felix Rodriguez is the founder and CEO of Back Office, a human-assisted AI platform and bookkeeping service for companies and consultants. In an interview with Nathan Beckord on Foundersuite’s “How I Raised It” podcast he shared how 500 Startups was instrumental in the early growth of BackOffice. Below is an excerpt of his interview.  I believe founders have superpowers. Before I started Back Office, I had built about 10 startups and sold three of them, growing teams that started in my living room to offices of 50 to 75 employees really rapidly.  The idea for Back Office came from a pain point I encountered with each startup: the one thing I hated with each company — and put off doing …


PUBLISHED BY
May 31, 2019 On Our Blog

In-House vs. Outsource: What’s the Best Accounting Strategy for Your Startup?

Guest Post: Justin McLoughlin is the Founder of airCFO. Under no circumstances should any of the below content be construed as legal, tax or investment advice from 500 Startups or any of its affiliates. The early days of any company are all about resource management. Life as a startup is perilous. The companies who survive and thrive are usually the ones who find ways to do more with less. That could mean having employees who pull double duty and fill multiple roles. It may mean working a grueling schedule. It could also mean outsourcing certain key functions. Outsourcing can be a great way for a startup to leverage experienced and skilled talent without breaking the bank. You only pay for …


PUBLISHED BY