Algorand APAC Accelerator Program makes USD $2.4 million commitment to blockchain start-ups
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA 6 December 2022
The Algorand APAC Accelerator Program, led by AXL Ventures in Queensland, Australia, today pledged additional support for APAC start-ups built on the Algorand layer-one blockchain, announcing plans to inject USD $2.4 million into as many as 48 promising projects over the next three years.
Applications are currently open, with AXL focused on selecting and investing in founders building to catalyse mainstream adoption of blockchain technology via the Algorand layer-one blockchain. The boosted funding comes amid ongoing challenging conditions in the crypto market and further bolsters the successful Program which aims to accelerate the growth of founders and early-stage companies, turning their start-ups into strong, scalable businesses.
The Program, supported by Optio Capital, supports start-ups and established businesses alike as they navigate the current, unique market conditions, including difficulties in fundraising and declining cryptocurrency values. Unique market conditions, including difficulty in fundraising, and cryptocurrency values plummeting, make the accelerator program especially timely. Capital now is very risk-averse and the AXL Ventures program, led by an experienced founder and ex-Microsoft Product Manager seeks to substantially de-risk capital investments by coaching Web3 founders on smart business fundamentals with a focus on revenue growth and user acquisition. This program will act as a lifeline for valid projects that would otherwise face the risk of failure.
For the first cohort, up to 12 start-ups will go through a 12-week acceleration program and receive critical upfront seed funding of $50,000 USD (Approx. $75,000 AUD). Projects that have demonstrated aptitude and potential throughout the program will also be invited to pitch at a demo day at the end of the 12 weeks for an opportunity for follow-on financing from AXL’s investor network.
AXL Ventures CEO, Michael Hofweller said that the next generation of blockchain start-ups will solve mass market use cases that make the technology as seamless as our infrastructure today. With the aid of a new Web3 Program Director, Zach Varnier, who brings experience from both TechStars and x15 Ventures, AXL is perfectly positioned to deploy a Web3 program focused on coaching startups on the same fundamentals that made Web2 companies like Slack or Instacart household names.
"We are excited to uncover and support the startups that are building projects that demonstrate real-world utility on the Algorand blockchain" said AXL Ventures CEO Michael Hofweller. "We believe blockchain technology will revolutionise a wide range of industries, and we are committed to investing in the companies driving this innovation forward."
“The blockchain landscape has been rocked in 2022 by a number of prominent projects failing, but we believe that the long-term potential of blockchain technology is coming in a new wave of founders not focused on tokens but on building products that solve real customer pains,” said Hofweller. “There are a lot of smart engineers building in the space, where they need help is business and growth fundamentals. With our help around pain points like driving user acquisition and cash flows we believe we can bring investor and end user confidence back into the space.”
In addition to the funding and mentorship provided by AXL Ventures amongst others, the accelerator program also includes a series of workshops and networking events designed to help startups connect with potential customers, partners, and investors."Our goal is to help these startups succeed, and we believe that providing access to the right resources and connections is a key part of that," said Hofweller. "We are excited to see what these companies can accomplish, and we are confident that they will make a significant impact in the blockchain space."
Milo Simpson-Pedler, Tokenblogs Founder and Head of Product, has applied for the program knowing what the experience and financial backing will mean for many start-ups like his.“I think joining the Algorand APAC accelerator program would be an incredible opportunity for Tokenblogs, where we are building a decentralised marketplace for writers, bloggers and creators to turn their articles into tradable NFTs for their audiences to purchase. Being supported by experienced mentors and talented founders is exactly what we need to take the project to the next level,” said Milo Simpson-Pedler, Tokenblogs Founder and Head of Product.
“I'm excited to join the Algorand APAC Accelerator Program as a mentor. I believe Algorand is ripe for disruption in the blockchain space and the commitment to sports and media through the sponsorship with FIFA sparks my interest. I have invested in and advised over 80 startups and I think the Algorand APAC Accelerator Program will be critical for early-stage startups aiming to build scalable and investable businesses.” said Sam Li, General Partner at Ludis Capital, Algorand APAC Accelerator Program Mentor.
Adriana Belotti, Algorand Foundation’s Interim Head of Community for Australia and Governance Program Manager said she is excited about what the AXL Ventures accelerator program will mean for valid start-ups in the region.“The Algorand Foundation‘s mission is to drive our ecosystem growth and an important part of that is the ability to support early stage startups. We have amazing partners running our Americas and Europe accelerators and are thrilled to have AXL Ventures join us to work with projects in the APAC region. I’m excited to see the first cohort selection and already looking forward to demo day,” said Ms Belotti.
The first cohort application opened on September 27, 2022 and closes on January 13, 2023. Offers are made on a rolling basis, with the 12-week program starting on 26 January 2023.
Benefits for up to 12 successful start-up applicants:
1. Investment of $50,000 USD ($75,000 AUD) for 5% total equity; a $1,111,111 USD post-money valuation cap.
2. Global network of leading mentors that will assist founders in overcoming a variety of hurdles that arise early in a startups development.
3. Specialised curriculum designed to identify and unlock startups intrinsic value and propel them into a strong product-market fit stage.
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