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Parallel18’s 12th accelerator program offers $60K in contributions

Parallel18, the entrepreneurship program of the Puerto Rico Science, Technology and Research Trust, has launched the application process for its 12th generation (Gen. 12) of the P18 international accelerator program. 

This round will admit up to 25 innovative companies, offering them 20 weeks of education, mentoring and a financial contribution totaling $60,000. Applications are open until April 30 for online submissions.

The financial support for Gen. 12 is split between a $40,000 equity-free grant and a $20,000 investment through a simple agreement for future equity (SAFE). Participants will also benefit from weekly mentoring sessions and progress assessments during the program.

P18 entrepreneurs will gain access to an extensive network of mentors, investors, corporate clients, business partners and contacts focused on addressing the needs of a growing company.

“We continue to promote innovation and global collaboration in Puerto Rico. This call, once again, demonstrates the Trust’s commitment to empowering entrepreneurs and startups worldwide so that they can globally scale their products and strengthen the island’s economy,” said Lucy Crespo, the trust’s chief executive officer.

She also highlighted Parallel18’s success, noting that 92% of participating companies continue operations, reflecting the program’s effectiveness.

Héctor Jirau, executive director of Parallel18, emphasized that the initiative reaffirms the trust’s dedication to the island’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. 

“P18 is a unique opportunity for innovative companies that can develop in Puerto Rico. The selected companies will receive ongoing support with mentoring and a financial grant that will allow companies to continue growing and scaling. The mentoring provided and the companies’ access to the network of corporate partners and investors is unmatched, as it helps drive the growth and success of the solutions significantly.” 

To date, 275 companies have participated in P18, including 53 Puerto Rican firms. The program has received companies from Chile, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Singapore, the U.S. mainland, among other countries. 

The program targets companies that are three years old or less, have sales or a validated product, and show potential for growth and scalability in various markets.

A commitment to full-time participation and physical presence in Puerto Rico is required from at least two founders, who must also present a strategy to take advantage of the local entrepreneurial system.

The selection process is competitive, involving initial screening by the Parallel18 team, an evaluation by external judges, and a final decision by a committee of investors and community members. The chosen companies will be announced by the end of May, with the program starting in the first week of July.

An informational session will take place virtually on April 12 at 12:30 p.m. to address questions, with registration available here.

Since its official in December 2015, the accelerator has received more than 4,500 applications from more than 60 countries. Participating companies enjoy perks such as discounted services from supportive providers, recruitment through Parallel18’s TalentApp, and business development via Parallel18 Connect and Parallel18 Ventures, which assist in developing investment strategies and connecting startups with investors.

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