By Neal Sáles-Griffin, Managing Director of Techstars Chicago
Helping founders succeed is our mission at Techstars. In Chicago, we have the privilege of working with hundreds of founders, mentors, and community leaders who embody the spirit of our core value to Give First. With the support of the Chicago network, we’re ready to kick off our next round of running programs with the most promising companies we could find. On behalf of the Techstars Chicago team and community, I am over the moon to introduce you to our next class today.
This past weekend the founders from previous Techstars Chicago classes reconnected in person inside of 1871. Our alumni got a chance to meet the next incoming class for Techstars Chicago and welcome them into our community. Everyone shared insights and knowledge they’ve gained over their many experiences growing their businesses. Founders led sessions to help each other establish sales processes, develop fundraising narratives, and plan potential exit strategies.
However, it wasn’t the skill development that was the most noteworthy aspect of the time we all spent together. The serendipitous conversations and connections made between the alumni and the incoming class made all the difference. We laughed together, played together, learned together, and became both first-time and in many cases stronger friends with one another.
The true value of the Techstars experience are the connections you foster with the people around you. The lifelong bonds that get formed throughout program and long thereafter are hard to quantify, but are consistently the #1 benefit our founders say they experience from the program. Each of these companies have ambitious visions to make a dent in the universe. We are grateful for Techstars Chicago to be the next critical move in their journeys to do so.
We have nine companies already based in Chicago along with teams from Cleveland, Israel, and Nigeria. You can follow us on Twitter at @Techstars_Chi if you’d like to observe their journey over the next three months. We also hope to see you at demo day on September 1st.
Thanks for reading, and please join me in welcoming our next class of Techstars Chicago companies!
BāKIT Box: Culturally diverse baking kits delivered to your door (Chicago)
bekome: Personalized supplements and support for your mental wellbeing (Chicago)
Bloomfilter: Enterprise software planning (Cleveland)
Brocali: A health education platform (Israel)
Cue the Curves: An app helping plus-size women find clothing that fits their size and style (Chicago)
Flare FS: A financial operating system for nonprofits (Remote)
Haylon Technologies: A smart battery startup (Chicago)
Meal Village: A cloud kitchen service aimed at elderly populations (Chicago)
Near Technology: Tech support and coaching for residents in retirement communities (Chicago)
Remote Gravity: Location Intelligence for Africa and emerging markets (Nigeria)
Transfer Thought: A no-code platform for creating safety training resources for new hires (Chicago)
Zest: A Gen-Z cooking app (Chicago)
Techstars is the most active pre-seed investor in the world having invested through its accelerators in more than 4,000 companies. Founded in 2006, Techstars believes that entrepreneurs create a better future for everyone and great ideas can come from anywhere. Now we are on a mission to invest in an unprecedented number of startups per year enabling more capital to flow to more entrepreneurs around the world. We do this by operating accelerator programs and venture capital funds, as well as by connecting startups, investors, corporations, and cities to help build thriving startup communities. www.techstars.com
Neal Sáles-Griffin has been the Managing Director of the Techstars Chicago Accelerator since 2019. Before Techstars, he made his name in the startup ecosystem when he founded the nation’s first coding bootcamp, Code Academy, in 2011. Since his exit, Neal has not stopped promoting change - running for mayor of Chicago, assisting several non-profit foundations, and now putting his efforts toward finding, teaching, and supporting the next generation of impactful entrepreneurs.