Business Incubator

 

Applications for the S20 Accelerated Entry Program are now closed. Be sure to join our newsletter and stay tuned for future opportunities to join FORGE.

 

JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER!

 

In the meantime, check out the recent info webinar below to learn more about FORGE's business incubation programs and how the Accelerated Entry Program works!

 

 

 

 

 


FORGE startups are post-idea stage, high-potential, scalable companies located in or willing to move to Tucson.

These companies distinguish themselves by having:

  • Industry‐changing, disruptive technology or deep intellectual property
  • Scalable product or service
  • Coachable management team
  • Aptitude for pursuing strategic investments or grants, but equally capable of bootstrapping

 


    Applying to the FORGE incubator

    Arizona FORGE has partnered with Village Capital, a global, early-stage venture acceleration and training organization, to create a custom accelerated entry program for companies interested in joining our incubator. Using Village Capital’s 10-year-running methodology and curriculum, entrepreneurs will work through the VIRAL pathway and work with their cohort in peer-to-peer learning to prepare their ventures for market. The curriculum will cover the skills and tasks needed to grow a profitable and scalable business using Village Capital’s peer due diligence model.

     

    How our incubator works:

    • We will run an Accelerated Entry Program (AEP) 3 times per year, where up to 12 teams will be selected to participate from a competitive application process.
    • Over an 8-week period, the AEP consists of 6 days of intensive in-person programming covering business fundamentals key to building a scalable business, using the VilCap Communities curriculum.
    • At the conclusion of the program, up to 3 teams will be invited to join the FORGE incubator, where they will earn the chance to work side by side with leading business experts, corporate innovation partners, and other high-performing startup teams.
    • Each team can participate in the incubator for up to 3 years, contingent upon hitting pre-set business milestones.
    • Most teams will graduate the FORGE incubator once they are ready to scale (i.e. growing team beyond founders, need dedicated office space, adding new product/service lines, etc...)

    If the answer to these questions is yes, apply to the S20 round of the Accelerated Entry Program today!

     

    Selection Criteria:

    • Have 2+ co-founders with differentiated skills sets.
    • Identified a specific, important, and large problem.
    • Have a hypothesis for how to solve this problem.
    • Have the ability to develop a low-fi prototype.
    • Know the total addressable market size and target market share.
    • Have an outline of a revenue model.
    • Identified multiple possible markets or customer segments.

     

    S20 Accelerated Entry Program Dates* (meets 6 Saturdays in Tucson from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm):

    • Week 1 (Jun 20): Problem and vision, Value Proposition, Customer Discovery
    • Week 2 (Jun 27): Peer due diligence, Product, and Market Mapping
      • Off-week (Research)
    • Week 3 (Jul 11): Team, Business Model, Financial Narrative
    • Week 4 (Jul 18): Funding Your Startup, Navigating Sales
      • Off-week (Pitch Prep)
    • Week 5 (Aug 1): Pitch Practice, Mock Board Meetings with Mentors
    • Week 6 (Aug 8): Final Pitch, Closing reception

     

    * Please check your calendars and confirm you are available on these dates prior to applying. Note that all dates are subject to change following public health guidance related to the COVID-19 response.

     


    After the Accelerated Entry Program, a select number of teams will be invited to the FORGE incubator!

     

    What you get if you are invited to join our incubator:

    • Individualized support team of leading coaches, mentors, global subject matter experts, and investors.
    • Up to 3 years of rent-free use of the brand new FORGE at Roy Place innovation hub in downtown Tucson: reserved desk, new furniture, reservation-less huddle rooms, mentor/consulting rooms, board rooms, collaborative classroom, etc. 
    • Peer-to-peer programming that leverages the strength of a network of other high-performance startup teams. 
    • Collaborative workspace with top corporations sponsoring innovation projects on-site​.
    • Access to VilCap Communities curriculum and global network, aimed at preparing startup teams for growth and investability.
    • Rigorous business development program valued at over $50K/year.

     


        Key Dates:

        • Applications open: May 1, 2020
        • Applications close: May 29, 2020
        • S20 cohort announced: June 5, 2020
        • Welcome Reception: June 12, 2020
        • S20 Accelerated Entry Program*: Meeting in Tucson 10:00 am-5:00 pm on Saturdays. (6/20, 6/27, 7/11, 7/18, 8/1, 8/8)
        • Selected startup teams invited to join FORGE incubator announced: Aug 29, 2020
        • Teams move into FORGE at Roy Place: Sep 2020

         

        * Please check your calendars and confirm you are available on these dates prior to applying. Note that all dates are subject to change following public health guidance related to COVID-19 response.

           

          Applications for the S20 Accelerated Entry Program are now closed. Be sure to join our newsletter and stay tuned for future opportunities to join FORGE.

           

          JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER!

           

          If you have questions, contact Anna Darian, Incubator Services Coordinator (FORGE at Roy Place), adarian@arizona.edu


          Frequently Asked Questions:

           

          Will you be running the programs virtually in response to COVID-19?

          • No, at this point, we are committed to running this program in person as our curriculum leverages a peer learning environment that cannot be replicated virtually. If public health precautions prohibit this, we will postpone program dates. We are also exploring alternative models of running our programs in the future. 

          Will you only incubate UA startups?​

          • No, the program is open to anyone who meets our rigorous selection criteria.

          My startup isn’t in digital health or sustainability. Can I still apply?​

          • Yes, absolutely. Startups in any industry will be considered.

          I’m running a social venture (non-profit, b-corps, etc...). Is FORGE for me?​

          • Yes, both for-profit and non-profit teams are eligible to apply.

           I’m planning to bootstrap and not take venture capital. Should I still apply?​

          • Our programs are not limited to venture-backed business models. If you do want to pursue investors, we can connect you to our network when your startup is ready, but that is not a core part of this program. We focus on supporting you in building a sustainable and revenue-generating business.

          Do I have to be in Tucson to be in FORGE?

          • Yes, for the FORGE at Roy Place location, we ask that teams be located in Tucson (or willing to relocate if accepted). Stay tuned for updates on future locations...

          I’m not sure if my startup is ready. Who can I talk to?

           

          JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER!