Virtual Accelerator— ONESIXONE Founders Program

UPDATE 5/26/20: Just 1 day after launching, our founder’s program was featured in ABC’s WCJB TV 20

UPDATE 4/14/21: Post has been updated to serve as a reference and FAQ for those interested in applying to our Summer 2021 program.

As of today, the ONESIXONE Summer Founder’s cohort application is live! We will be taking a small batch of founders into our 10-week program; covering topics from building product and landing your first few users/customers, to forming your team and raising capital.

We believe there are many individuals out there who were born to rewrite history, to build new things that solve real problems, but they may not have the appropriate resources to make it happen. It’s our mission to help these founders get their products up and running and connect with the people and resources necessary for them to scale.

The program will feature the following:

1. Weekly virtual masterclasses taught by one of our guest lecturers

2. Weekly office hours where you have the opportunity to tell us the challenges you’re facing and request specific assistance

In addition, you will be connected with industry-specific mentors throughout the course of the program and in the final week, you will have the opportunity to pitch accredited investors at our virtual demo day.

The deadline to apply is Sunday, June 6th, 2021. Click this link to apply:

ONESIXONE Founder’s Program FAQs

What kind of companies / ideas qualify for the program? Which ones are not a good fit?

This program is designed for high growth potential startups/ideas (ex. Enterprise software, SaaS products, etc.) with a large total addressable market (TAM). It is not designed for lifestyle businesses, coaching/consulting companies, etc. There’s nothing wrong with these types of businesses, it is just not our area of expertise/focus.

If your idea/business is solving a huge pain-point or problem, that’s a very good sign. We don’t necessarily mean like trying to solve world hunger, or cure cancer (these are great things to pursue, but you will likely not be able to make significant progress in just 10-weeks).

Having revenue will not be a factor in the selection process. However, the ability to move quickly in testing assumptions will be a large factor. For example, if you’re applying with an idea you came up with last week, we will be looking at what you have done since then (built an MVP, created a business model canvas, surveyed potential customers, found co-founders, etc.)

Who is a good fit for this program?
College students, recent grads (or dropouts), or anyone else who has a lot of ambition and believes they can make a dent in the universe by solving a problem or fulfilling a need. Someone with the bandwidth to spend the 10-week period working 60–80+ hours per week on their startup.

Candidates must have a long term outlook and a vision for what they’re creating. However, they must also be coachable and be willing to adapt as they learn from their customers/users.

What criteria will be used for the selection process?
Ultimately, we are investing in people. Ideal candidates are hackers, builders, starters, and/or individuals who have the curiosity, passion, and drive to start a “project” and stick with it until significant progress has been made. A few examples are someone who created a mobile app in high-school, or started an organization to achieve a goal, or even someone who would take car engines apart and rebuild them for fun (these are just random examples).

Startups are extremely hard to pull off successfully, and require an immense amount of focus and hard work over an extended period of time. Therefore, we want to know that you will have the perseverance to see this through and are not just following some trend (ex. trying to build a blockchain or AI startup only because these things appear to be trending suddenly). With that said, a good candidate is someone who has started something in the past and can demonstrate significant progress made as well as lessons learned from the experience (even if it failed); as opposed to a candidate who might have had numerous great ideas, but moved from one project to the next, without making significant progress on any one of them.

Are there any costs associated with the program?

The ONESIXONE Group will take 2% stake in each venture in exchange for participation in our program; this number is negotiable. We would rather take a great founder into our program and get less than 2% or no equity than to pass because a founder is not willing to give up the equity. There are no hidden fees. Everything we do at ONESIXONE Group is focused around our long-term vision to help early startup founders succeed. Having stake in your venture allows us to dedicate more of our time and resources to helping your team succeed, even after the 10-week program is over.

What will I get for participating in the program?

Throughout the program, you will get access to the following:

  • Private weekly classes with an expert about a topic relevant to early stage founders
  • Access to mentors and industry experts who will coach you 1 on 1
  • A network of other founders in similar stages of their companies
  • Opportunity to pitch to group of investors during our demo day at the end of the program

Will I get funding for my startup / idea?

The 10-week program will conclude with a session on how to raise capital for your startup, led by an investor. In addition, at our virtual Demo Day, you will have the opportunity to pitch accredited investors for capital. ONESIXONE is currently raising a fund to begin investing in all startups accepted into future programs and we will be investing in some startups that have participated in previous programs.

Essentially, you are not guaranteed any funding, but if you complete the program, put in the work, participate in all sessions and your startup looks promising at the end of the 10 weeks — we will put you in front of numerous investors and will play an active role in helping you get the funding you need to scale.

Do I need to move to Gainesville, FL for this program?

No. In the future our program will likely have more of an in-person component, but for now it will be 100% remote. All of the sessions will be hosted through zoom and other teleconferencing / virtual event platforms.

Why did we start this program?

Less than 4% of venture funding is available to startups in the entire southeast region of the US. While our program will accept founders from all over the country, our focus is in this region. After COVID-19 hit, we are observing many investors seeking to invest in startups outside of silicon valley / NY. We are making it easy for investment firms in the bay area, NY, and elsewhere to invest in quality deals in the southeast region.There is also a gap in the southeast US when it comes to pre-seed funding. There’s not enough venture firms doing it, and many of the firms that claim to be “early stage investors” are doing it wrong.

The co-founders of ONESIXONE Group have all started startups in the past and we all have a burning passion for startups and education. This program is the intersection of those two things. This is also the largest problem we feel that we have a pretty good shot at solving.

What is the time commitment like?

You are expected to be spending most of your waking hours working on your product/company. 10 weeks is a short amount of time, but a significant amount of progress can be made if the founders work very hard. As far as the weekly events our program has, the time commitment is a total maximum of about 5 hours per week with a minimum of 10-minutes per week. These events are outlined below:

60–120 minutes: Weekly class (optional, but highly encouraged)

10 minutes: Weekly office-hours

How will I be monitored?

We will not be monitoring you to find out if you’re spending 20 hours/week or 80 hours/week on your startup. Although, it will become clear pretty quickly if you are or aren’t putting in the time. However, this is your product/startup, and if you’re not excited about it, nobody else will be. We will check in with you each week to see what progress your team has made and what roadblocks you’re currently facing.

What is the ONESIXONE Group?

~1.61 is the golden ratio (also known as the Fibonacci sequence). It’s the natural way that things grow, and naturalists argue it’s the most efficient way for growth to occur. Our mission at ONESIXONE Group is to create an environment for entrepreneurs and startups to grow in an organic way.

We started hosting networking events in early 2017 and they quickly became very popular amongst Gainesville’s startup community. A year ago, my co-founders and I got together to double down on our mission to help startups succeed. We started hosting roundtables and began talks of building our incubator. In March 2020, in response to COVID-19 forcing all of our in-person events to be cancelled, we launched the ONESIXONE Report. Finally, with the corona virus killing plans for our in-person incubator in Summer 2020, we decided to make it entirely remote. We know that even in this time of uncertainty, many investors are still looking for great startups to fund and many of them have already started doing so through zoom.

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