HOW ARE YOU DIFFERENT FROM OTHER INVESTORS AND ACCELERATORS?
Small Class Size
On average, eight to ten startups participate in our program at any one time, ensuring your startup will get the attention and hands-on assistance you need from our team and our network.
Length of Program
At 33 weeks, AlphaLab Gear’s program is one of the longest in the country. This allows teams to make significant progress on product and customer traction, as well as work through the early stages of manufacturing.
Hands on Mentorship
As part of the AlphaLab and Innovation Works’ network, our companies have access to 100+ engaged mentors with experience in a broad range of disciplines.
Relationship with Innovation Works
Because AlphaLab Gear is an Innovation Works program, companies get access to the expertise and contacts of a top-10 seed investment fund, as well as the potential for up to $600k of follow-on funding for qualified alumni.
Each company receives a private office in our 10,000 square foot facility, in addition to access to the collaborative working space, lab space, conference rooms and full kitchen. Our setup gives you the best of both worlds: privacy and the ability to collaborate with your co-workers at any time.
AlphaLab Gear regularly holds entrepreneurship and tech events in the space, so you won’t need to do more than step outside your office to meet the connections that can help you take your business to the next level
HOW CAN WE APPLY?
Just fill out our online application before the listed deadline.
DO WE NEED A BUSINESS PLAN?
No business plan is required.
DO YOU THINK OUR COMPANY IS TOO EARLY/TOO LATE TO APPLY?
We accept teams at all stages of development (we’ve accepted teams anywhere from ideation to 1M+ in revenues). We expect that by the end of the program you will be ready to raise your next round of fundraising, whatever that amount may be.
If you are not manufacturing at scale, then you are not “too late.”
If you have more questions please feel free to sign up for open office hours.
DOES OUR COMPANY NEED TO BE INCORPORATED?
No. If you are accepted into our program, we will help you think through issues surrounding incorporation and also connect you with experienced legal providers our companies have worked with before.
We partner with a number of law firms that provide our companies with complimentary legal services and documents (e.g. certificate of incorporation, restricted stock purchase agreement, stockholders agreement, proprietary rights agreement).
WILL YOU SIGN A NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENT (NDA)?
No. Because we look at hundreds of business plans each year, we do not sign NDAs. However, we will work with you to find the balance between understanding your company’s unique advantage without requiring you to divulge proprietary information. In your application, please avoid disclosing any technical information that you consider to be your “secret sauce,” but be as clear as possible about your competitive advantage.
WHAT'S THE SELECTION PROCESS LIKE?
A review committee consisting of our advisors, investors, and the AlphaLab team will review all of the applications and select 20-30 companies for in-person interviews. After the face-to-face meetings and follow-up due diligence, we will select the companies based on the teams’ ability to develop and launch a winning product/service, the technology’s market potential, and the concept’s originality.
HOW IS THE INVESTMENT STRUCTURED?
Innovation Works receives 9% common stock in the company in return for a $50,000 investment, office space, hundreds of thousands of dollars in perks and discounts, and our services. (Founder’s can also choose to take $25,000 for 5%).
WHERE IS ALPHALAB GEAR'S OFFICE? WHAT IS IT LIKE?
We’re located at 6024 Broad Street in Pittsburgh’s East Liberty neighborhood. Conveniently situated a short walk from TechShop and coffee shops, restaurants, and other startup tech companies, our space has become a local hub of entrepreneurship and tech-related activities.
AlphaLab Gear’s 10,000 square foot facility contains individual offices for each company, open space for working or collaborating, conference rooms for large/private meetings, and a full kitchen.