Parallel18 marks 5th anniversary as it releases its 2020 Impact Report
The Parallel18 startup acceleration program is marking its fifth anniversary with a rundown of its achievements so far, which include receiving 4,340 applications, graduating 211 companies of which 35% are from Puerto Rico and seeking 85% of them survive despite trying economic times.
During a presentation, Parallel18 officials said $1.3 million were distributed in grants for its Generation 7 and Generation 8 cohorts alone, when companies from these two generations combined are valued at $102 million.
At the beginning of the year, parallel18 kicked off the second half of its 7th cohort and opened applications for its eighth group of international startups.
When a pandemic was declared, Gen.7 startups were allowed to return to their home countries, and the first virtual DemoDay happened.
Subsequently, with international borders closed, the accelerator received Gen.8, its first batch of fully-Puerto Rican startups which undertook the program’s curriculum in a virtual format.
“Five years ago, the program took its first steps. Now, our parallel18 community has an identity, a structure and a roadmap for entrepreneurship in the island,” said Eduardo Padial, P18 operations director.
“Our efforts have triggered a new investment ecosystem as well as confidence in our startups and our program. And, over the last year, our team was able to develop more tools than ever to help these founders,” he said.
During a virtual presentation, Parallel18 officials unveiled its Year Four Impact Report, which focuses on the results of 44 companies that completed P18 Gen.7 and Gen.8 between November 2019 and September 2020. The report also offers updates on Gen.1 through Gen. 6 companies and updates on its subprograms.
At present, Parallel18 is half-way through the third generation of its pre-accelerator, pre18, a group composed of 42 businesses. So far, the program — exclusive for Puerto Rican companies — has received more than 900 applications and graduated 71 startups of which 33 have gone on to participate in P18.
“Parallel18’s success with P18 and pre18 over the last five years is a fine example of the impact we’re able to create through the Puerto Rico Science, Technology and Research Trust’s resources and our financial capabilities which allows parallel18 to support scalable business that use Puerto Rico as a platform to grow,” Science Trust CEO Lucy Crespo said.
“Moreover, the program has worked toward my personal goal, as a CEO, of changing the younger generation’s mindset so that they have a roadmap to become the founders of their own innovative businesses,” she said.
“I’m very happy we’re able to gather and publish these results because it is critical for us to continue developing and diversifying our economic development,” she added.
Two programs that have been key in parallel18’s processes and positive results are P18Connect and P18Ventures, which provided support for startups to connect and create business opportunities and raise capital.