Spring, a "purpose-driven activator," is launching a new program this summer called Kick Vancouver.
Kick Vancouver is a preaccelerator program for early stage startups. It's slated to launch in June with a call for applications effective immediately.
The six-week program is designed to take entrepreneurs from ideation to launch by supporting them through the difficult early stages, including validating an idea, identifying demand, and developing a business plan for sustainable profitability. During the program, entrepreneurs will spend two days per week with Spring mentors and advisors. Other components of the program include workshops, lectures, pre-work and homework, fireside chats, and co-working collaboration.
"By supporting early-stage entrepreneurs in a small cohort environment that is equal parts intensive and inclusive, the Kick program fills a gap in the tools available for startup entrepreneurs before being accelerator ready," says Spring cofounder Keith Ippel. "We aim to decrease a startup’s time to market and increase their probability of success."
The program features a uniquely inclusive intake format. Entrepreneurs are guaranteed acceptance, provided they satisfy two requirements: first, they must submit a complete application before the deadline. Secondly, they are to crowdfund their tuition from friends and family within the timeframe stipulated.
“The crowdfunding element is an interesting one," explains cofounder Bonnie Foley-Wong. "Not only does it act as a filtering system to identify those who are committed, it’s also the first step in the idea validation process. Does the concept resonate within the entrepreneur’s network? Do they want to see the idea come to fruition, so much so that they’ll put their money where their mouth is?”