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Parallel18’s pre-acceleration program opens call for 5th cohort

Offering a larger grant of $25,000, Pre18, the local pre-acceleration program that’s part of parallel18 and its parent organization, the Puerto Rico Science, Technology and Research Trust, opened its fifth calling for local entrepreneurs that are working toward scaling their startups.

Pre18 is looking for local and innovative companies with a global growth potential while providing entrepreneurial education, mentorships and other resources that can help them to eventually launch into international markets, it announced.

Interested entrepreneurs must submit their applications online to apply for the program.

In addition to receiving a 25% increase in grant funding, compared to previous cohorts, the selected businesses must participate in aa 12-week curriculum that includes: business connections with local and corporate partners of the program, mentorships with key players of the ecosystem and constant advice and monitoring from professionals.

“After five years since our first calling for pre18, we decided to raise our funding opportunity to further adapt our program to the economic changes worldwide,” said Héctor Jirau, director of operations and investments of parallel18.

“Pre18 is committed to being a high-level educational program for the local companies and its founders. Because of that, we encourage companies with innovative solutions to submit their applications that can potentially lead them towards a successful entrepreneurial path and market launching,” he said.

Among the requirements to qualify for the program, the participants must have their product or service launched in their respective market and have been in business for three years or less.

If the project isn’t launched yet, the team members of the company must present a functional prototype with a projected launch plan. In the case of an e-commerce company, the website must be functional and already selling. 

Also, the startup must have the capacity to grow rapidly and export to new markets. Therefore, technology-based companies or innovative startups are the ideal candidates for the program.

“Once again, we incentivize innovative companies from the island and entrepreneurs in the diaspora to apply for pre18’s fifth generation,” said Science Trust CEO Lucy Crespo.

“We recognize and support Puerto Rican talent. This is why the Trust wants to provide the necessary tools and resources that can prepare them for global recognition and success. That is our goal — along with Colmena66, Fase1 and parallel18 — as an entrepreneurial pillar of the Trust,” she said.

“We’re working tirelessly to assist innovative entrepreneurs, which are part of the island’s economic development,” Crespo added.

As for the team members of each startup, at least one founder must be working full-time with their company’s operations and complying with Pre18’s responsibilities.

So far, 138 companies have completed the pre-acceleration program and 50 of its alumni have continued to the international and advanced acceleration program P18.

The application process will be open until Oct. 14, 2022. For more information about pre18,  visit the website or send an email. To access the complete application of the program, click here.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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