Frequently Asked Questions

Is Social Spark Lab another Startup Accelerator?


Not at all. We consider Social Spark Lab a Startup Launcher. It is not an accelerator because we don't accelerate established companies. Incubators are pretty much similar but work with earlier stage companies. We work with teams to start and launch a company from scratch. We will help you to build a strong investor-ready business model.




How is Social Spark Lab different?


Social Spark Lab is different in many ways.

  1. We don't follow the traditional admission process. We don't look for business knowledge, credentials or previous startup experience. We believe that the current model is discriminatory and exclusive to a few. We believe that entrepreneurship can be learned and we are here to teach it. We look for people committed and accountable, regardless of their experience or background.
  2. We will teach you how to do it. It is not about providing resources like desktop, WiFi, or access to mentors. Social Spark Lab educates and works with the team closely since the very beginning. We have theoretical content, practice, methodologies, tools, milestones and deadlines to help you launch your startup successfully and with solid foundations.
  3. We don't have a fixed period of time. We believe that each individual/team/idea is different. We believe that one fixed period of time for all doesn't work.




How many individuals/teams will Social Spark Lab admit?


5 groups. A group is an individual or a team. We will get more teams every a short period of time: to be announced soon.




Who can apply?


Anyone with an innovative idea or a potential startup from the Greater Boston area. You don't need to be advanced on your business, just the idea may be enough. If you think you are not a good fit (e.g.: you are at a later stage) but still need help, please contact us at info@socialsparklab.com.




Do I have to pay to apply?


No.




How is the selection process?


  1. You apply individually or as representation of your team (only one application per team is required) .
  2. We select individuals/teams to assist an in-person interview.
  3. We announce the final cohort.
  4. If you were not accepted in the first round, you are still participating for new selection rounds.




What is the selection criteria?


We will look for people who are strongly committed and accountable. We need to see your passion to be an entrepreneur. Required: -Commitment -Accountability -Passion A plus: -Some progress, such as a prototype, a drawing, a survey, or anything that shows you already tried to do something. -Target any of the 17 UN Global Goals (https://www.globalgoals.org/)




What happens if I am not accepted? Can I re-apply at another time?


If you were not accepted, you will still be participating in new selection rounds. You can also re-apply if you want.




What happens if I am accepted? How does it start?


We start doing an assessment of your team and your idea. What you know. What you don't know. Where you need more help. Then the program flows as weekly sessions.




Do I have to pay to enter the program?


No.




How long is the Social Spark Lab program?


As long as you need to launch your business. We will push you to work hard and achieve your milestones, but there is no final pitch date or anything like that. You are here to launch a business, and it may take you 3 months or 1 year. Regardless of the time you need, we will help you in the process. Based on our experience, we expect that teams take 6 months in average to launch the business.




What am I going to get as result of this program?


Your own company. A solid business with a strong business model, ready to attract investments.




Will you help my team to incorporate and deal with tax issues?


Yes, but don't worry about that. We have a lot of work to do before worrying about legal and tax issues.




Will you help me write my business plan?


At some point in the future, yes. First you need to define and validate a strong business model to make your business investable, that's our first major step.




What is the usual schedule for the weekly sessions?


Depending on teams availability, we will define one/two potential days a week to assist the weekly sessions. It will always be after 6pm, we understand that many people have class or work, so all the sessions will be during the evening.




I already have an MVP and I am trying to sell my product, will Social Spark Lab help me grow my company?


It depends. As part of the admission, we will evaluate how much you advanced in your business and how strong your business model is. If we consider your business model is not strong enough to get to Investment Readiness Level, then we can help you to make it stronger and grow from there. If we consider your business model is strong and you already built your MVP and got some funding, then you are at a later stage. If you are in that case and still need help, let's talk!




Do you take any equity?


It depends. Once we have a selected group of teams/individuals, we will work with them one-on-one to define a potential equity, or royalties, or maybe nothing (e.g.: if you are starting a non-profit, we cannot ask you for equity).




Why do you use F6S for the application? Is it required?


Yes, it is! We partner with F6S to provide a much better experience for you and for a better management on our side. Besides, we want to provide you with more and more opportunities. Being part of the F6S platform allows us to connect you with more people and resources. Please contact us for any feedback related to the application.




When is the application deadline?


We have a rolling application process. At this point, we already closed the first round of applicants and the second round is open. To be considered as part of the second round of applicants, you have time until November, 11th 2018.





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