Business accelerator Parallel18 (P18), announced that 40 local companies were selected to enter the pre-18 preparatory program that begins in April and will grant $20,000 in funds, among other benefits, for the development of their businesses.
The 40 selected companies competed among a group of 307 submissions, P18 officials said.
Categories or industries represented include: e-commerce, energy, finance, health, biotechnology, development of ‘software’, media and advertising, agricultural innovation, fashion, gastronomy, social networks and tourism. The program begins in April.
The selected companies are: Andeno Co, Apagon, Banquetealo, bioCH4, Block Farms, Booked, Boon, Cinco Validation, Clickup, Contrabando PR, Cosechas Tierra Viva, Diseño Isleño, DoCare, Edvo, ESNU Wax, F.R.E.S.H. Export, Fuera, Gopanza LLC, GuardDV, Guilty, KNOWDEX, Libros 787, Licorería Miramar, LiliWeds, Loveshare, Mariem Footwear, Molcajete Foods LLC, Monitoreo, MultiMic, OGMA LanguageStudio, Pin2Pick, PRatianLLC, PRoduce!, PumpedFuels, Rendy, Retazo.co, Solutions, SpotiN, Tummelier, UrbanVittles y Vagons.
Of the 40 companies, three were founded by Puerto Ricans living outside of the island who saw in pre18 the opportunity to return and establish their businesses, executives said.
Almost half (more than 42 percent) of these companies are led by women entrepreneurs, the global average in innovation programs is 20 percent. For most companies, this will be the first time they participate in an entrepreneurship program.
“We’re very happy that we could reach a broader and inclusive group of entrepreneurs including businesswomen and students, and that they saw in pre18 an opportunity they should take advantage of,” said Parallel18 Executive Director Sebastián Vidal.
“The message arrived and fortunately this program was designed for companies in earlier stages, which allowed precisely that more people could request and have a great representation of the talent that exists in Puerto Rico,” he said.
“The selection was difficult, we received many applications with very interesting projects, which we would like to continue developing,” he said, adding that the companies that were not selected will receive an official communication with information on other initiatives of the business ecosystem that can support them with their businesses.
Among them, he mentioned the iCorps of Grupo Guayacán and the resource directory of Colmena66, which along with Parallel18, is also part of the Puerto Rico Science, Technology and Research Trust.
Call for entries for Parallel 18 ‘Gen5’
Meanwhile, Parallel18 announced that the call to participate in the fifth generation (Gen5) of p18 will run from March 12 to April 16, 2018.
As in the past editions, companies interested in applying may do so through the p18 page using the YouNoodle platform.
Among the offerings of the program are: funds or grants amounting to $ 40,000; mentoring and business consulting on important issues such as exporting; business contacts, including investors; and access to a professional and committed work team that helps to that the companies reach the goals of the business, among other additional services that are offered to the companies once they finish their passage by the accelerator.
For its fifth generation, p18 will select up to 40 scalable and innovative start-ups from anywhere in the world that have been founded in the last three years and that already have traction in the market. To date, more than 100 new companies, representing more than 15 countries, have benefited from the program through their previous four generations.