WHAT TYPES OF COMPANIES ARE YOU SEEKING FOR ALPHALAB?
At AlphaLab we are looking for early stage software technology startups. We look for companies across software categories including SaaS with verticals such as FinTech, EdTech, Retail, and Healthcare IT, Enterprise Software, eCommerce, Gaming, and others.
Regardless of industry category, characteristics of a strong candidate include:
- Early version of product that has been tested with initial customers
- Clear use case, problem statement and value proposition
- Product launched or can get to market with current team
- Realistic plan to get to the next stage of growth in 3-6 months
IS YOUR APPLICATION ALWAYS OPEN?
Starting soon, our application will always be open. We run two application cycles annually. Our application is always open because we include early evaluation options in our application cycle so that companies who are ready for investment and support can be considered before the application deadline.
CAN I APPLY TO ALPHALAB AND ALPHALAB GEAR?
When you start an application you will be asked if you consider yourself to be primarily a hardware company or a software company. You will then be reviewed by the respective program – AlphaLab (software) or AlphaLab Gear (hardware).
DO YOU PROVIDE FOLLOW-ON FUNDING AFTER THE ALPHALAB PROGRAM?
As AlphaLab is a program of Innovation Works, companies who complete the program are eligible for additional funding from Innovation Works’ Seed Fund. Follow-on investment decisions are made independently and based on several factors, including the company’s progress and external feedback from investors and industry experts.
WHAT IS ALPHALAB'S RELATIONSHIP TO INNOVATION WORKS, ALPHALAB HEALTH AND ALPHALAB GEAR?
The AlphaLab accelerator programs are part of Innovation Works, one of the most active seed-stage investors in the United States. Since the creation of its seed fund in late-1999, IW has invested over $80 million in more than 400 companies that have gone on to raise over $2.4 billion from investors across the nation. These companies include life science companies such as ALung, Blue Belt Technologies, Cognition Therapeutics, Creegh Pharmaceuticals, and other software and hardware technology companies including JazzHR, Bossa Nova, ModCloth, 4Moms, Civic Science, Maven Machines, ShowClix, NoWait, and Wombat Security.
AlphaLab (software) and AlphaLab Gear (hardware) are nationally-ranked accelerators that help early-stage companies achieve product-market validation by providing funding, mentorship, and introductions through an immersive cohort-based program.
AlphaLab Health draws upon the collective experience and networks developed by Innovation Works in funding life science companies and running accelerator programs AlphaLab and AlphaLab Gear.
WHERE IS ALPHALAB’S OFFICE? ARE YOU OPEN?
We are located in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood. Conveniently situated between coffee shops, restaurants, and other startup tech companies, our space has become a local hub of entrepreneurship and tech-related activities.
AlphaLab’s office is currently closed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2020 we ran our first fully virtual program.
AlphaLab’s 5,000 square foot facility contains individual offices for each company, open space for working or collaborating, conference rooms for large/private meetings, and a kitchen. Office supplies, conference rooms, and free drinks and snacks are also provided.
CAN YOU DESCRIBE OUR SELECTION PROCESS?
You’re encouraged to reach out to the AlphaLab team before you formally apply so we can get to know each other!
The first step in our application process is to apply through f6s. Then, the AlphaLab team and a group of our colleagues, investors, and mentors read and evaluate all of the applications. Based on our evaluations, we may follow up with some additional questions or directly invite you to an interview.
During the interviews, you’ll have 5 minutes to present your company, followed by Q + A from a review committee including members of the AlphaLab, AlphaLab Gear, and Innovation Works teams. After the face-to-face meetings and follow-up due diligence, we will select the companies based on the value proposition for your product/service, target market, current product and market traction, team’s knowledge of target industry, and overall fit and timing of AlphaLab.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE PROGRAM ENDS?
You will be a lifetime member of AlphaLab! Our AlphaLab network runs strong and we’ll continue to stay in touch and share many opportunities with you. You’ll also be connected to the Innovation Works seed fund. Plus, you’ll always be welcome to stop by AlphaLab and catch up with us.