We run our 5-month program twice a year in 3 key cities around the world. Even if you do choose one city as your base, the program is unique where you can leverage the other cities’ programs as well.
Our location in New York City allows us to bring in world class mentors, advisors and investors. We also provide all of our companies with the industry connections they need to make sure their products can scale.
There are many reasons to be in Singapore if you are focused on food innovation. Our unique location in Singapore plus our close collaboration with the government offers founders unparalleled access to the center of the sector in Asia-Pacific.
Our location in Paris is supported by our unique partnerships with Givaudan and Buhler Group, who provide our companies with scale-up capabilities and growth strategy, and with Shakeup Factory for additional mentors, advisors and investors.
Focusing on sustainable proteins, fats, ingredients, sweeteners, flavorings, or mono-crops like cocoa, coffee, sugar and palm
Initial product created
Market validated through initial sales Ready for scale
Team has relevant experience on both the product and market side
Applications for the New York City, Singapore, and Paris programs are reviewed on a rolling basis, giving you the opportunity to secure investment and gain entry into the accelerator ahead of the program start date. This also means that spots in each program are available as soon as applications open and may become filled before applications close.
Every company will be required to apply online here. There could be further follow-up to provide additional information as due diligence progresses. This information includes a traditional pitch deck.
Screen & Review Application
During the first screen, our team will review and rate each application. They will use a set list of criteria to grade each company, giving a 1-5 overall score. Some examples include…”Is this a Big Idea?”, market, business model, competitive advantage, team, IP defensibility when relevant, and more.
Live Video Interviews
The best companies will be live-video interviewed by at least two team members. This call will include a pitch, Q&A and an opportunity for founders to ask the team questions. The interviewers will keep notes on their insights, additional questions and areas to be further discussed.
Each team member will stack rank their top companies. They will then be interviewed by other team members and areas of follow-up from the first interviews will be explored.
Final Interview & Decision
Once the interviews are completed, the team will get together and discuss their preferred companies who will ultimately receive an offer of investment and participation in the relevant accelerator. No need to chase for a decision, as soon as we’ve identified the best companies, we’ll reach out and make you an offer.
When we have shortlisted the companies we would like to invest in and work with, we will reach out and take you through the offer. Our offer for participation in an accelerator program is standard, i.e. we do not negotiate with each company and all companies are given the same offer.
How do I apply?
Click here to go to the application form page.
Does it cost money to participate in your accelerator?
The program does not require you to outlay any cash directly to us. Our standard investment is we will provide you with USD$200K and of that portion you will get USD$125K cash and the other USD$75K is paid for the program.
What do the In-Kind services include?
In addition to our capital investment, we take early-stage companies through a 5-month program to accelerate their growth. Participation provides:
- Life-long support from our team: Our team will work hands-on with you to help you meet your goals. This includes weekly meetings (for 5 months) to build out your business and fundraising strategies, address any roadblocks and capitalize on successes. As we build out your strategy, we leverage our extensive professional networks to get you in front of the buyers, investors and influencers most suited to your business. We develop lasting relationships with our portfolio companies, and continue to provide support after the program’s end.
- Relevant office, kitchen and lab access depending on location.
- Expert input: In addition to our core team, you’ll receive guidance from our experts in manufacturing, sales and distribution, marketing and food science. Our experts will continue to provide guidance and support after the program’s end.
- Exclusive workshops and 1:1 sessions: Our regular programming includes workshops and 1:1 office hours led by guest mentors and VCs covering every key business area.
- Opportunities for product showcases, with ample media footage to develop your product portfolio.
- Demo Days: We wrap up the program with our in-person Demo Day event in one of our accelerator program locations, where you’ll pitch to a room of 100+ inventors and industry professionals. You can also participate in virtual Demo Days to reach investors globally.
- Exclusive network access: Admitted companies receive life-long access to our network of 300+ mentors, investors and industry professionals.
- Follow-on funding: Top-performers have the opportunity to receive up to USD$2.5M in follow-on funding.
You can see a full list of the benefits the program provides here.
When will I hear back about direct investments?
Accelerator investments are currently our primary focus, but direct investment candidates are encouraged to apply. If we’re interested, we’ll invite you for an interview where we can discuss specifics of investment type and timeline. Companies who have raised USD$1M or more are typically what we look for in direct investment.
Are your accelerator terms negotiable?
No, the terms are set and standard. Every accelerator company receives US$200K in investment, at the same terms.
Do I have to relocate to New York City, Paris or Singapore?
Admitted companies have the option to participate in our program remotely or in-person at one of our offices in Paris, Singapore and New York.
My product is vegan, but it’s not a meat or dairy analog. Am I a fit for the program?
While we primarily invest in alternative meat, seafood and dairy replacements, we do consider products in other categories such as snacks and beverages.
Which program should I apply for?
You should apply for the program best suited to the market presence you’re looking for. If you plan to launch a product in the USA, for example, our New York City program would be the best fit for you. If you aren’t sure, please include a note in your application and we will discuss which location is best suited based on your needs.
My product is “plant-based,” but contains a small amount of an animal-based ingredient. Am I eligible to apply?
We are unable to invest in companies that use any amount of an animal-based ingredient in any of their products. All products sold must be vegan. Cell-based meat companies are an exception, as the “meat” is not derived from a live animal.
Do you accept insect-based products?
No, we do not invest in products containing insects or insect ingredients.
Do I need to be revenue generating?
Any traction, including recurring revenues, are great milestones to help boost your application, but are not required. Our accelerator program offers resources to help increase sales volume from any starting point, and we welcome pre-market companies to apply.
Do you invest in restaurants or retail stores?
We do not invest in brick and mortar businesses. To be eligible, these businesses must have or plan to have a product line to be sold in retail stores, online or through restaurants and other food service channels.
When do I get the investment?
Funds are wired on or around the start date of the relevant accelerator program.
What are the requirements for receiving follow-on investment?
We follow-on invest in the top 20% of companies that successfully complete our accelerator program. Follow-on checks can be any amount up to USD$3.5M, and must be part of a priced round led by a non-Big Idea Ventures investor. Whether or not a company receives follow-on investment is based on sustained growth and the successful completion of milestones both during and after the program.
I’ve applied and have not heard any feedback. When will you get back to me?
Rest assured that we will respond to each and every applicant in due time.
If I get rejected before can I apply again?
Yes, as we would love to see if you have any further traction that might warrant a different evaluation for your fit to the program.
What stage did I need to be?
On the plant-based side we do expect you to have at least a MVP. On the cell-based side this is not a hard requirement.