What happens at Stadia Accelerator?
Think of Stadia Accelerator as a 6-week crash program to maximize the value of your company. We team you up with mentors and advisors with experience in your areas of need where everyone is incentivized towards the same goal: increase your company’s value in order to maximize the likelihood of reaching the next step of investment/partnership/acquisition. Whether it’s helping you land your next big sale; find a national retailer, league or pro team partnership; or help you establish robust business practices, we are committed to shoring up your weaknesses and promoting your strengths. We are investing in you because we think we can help you become a good investment.
When will the application for the next cohort be online?
Stadia runs two accelerator programs each year. The Fall program runs from September to December with an application window of June to July. The Spring program runs from April to June with an application window of November to January.
How much do you invest?
In addition to the efforts of our mentors and advisors, Stadia Accelerator invests up to $100K in cash in each business. The total amount of each investment and the corresponding equity depends on each company’s needs and valuation.
Do we need to write a business plan?
You do not need to write a business plan, but our application requires a lot of the same information. Keep in mind that all finalists will be subjected to personal interviews in addition to a “demo day” in front of our investment committee so it is important that you can communicate all of the key factors that are normally included in a business plan.
Will you sign an NDA? How do I know you won’t steal my idea?
Stadia Accelerator receives several hundred applications each year so it is impossible to sign an NDA with everyone. We encourage you to apply to our accelerator, but urge you to not disclose any information that is proprietary. Get us fired up about your business without going into the recipe behind your secret sauce.
Will you fund multiple startups working on the same idea?
Stadia Accelerator is focusing on the main categories of equipment, apparel, software/apps, big data analytics, fantasy, gaming, nutrition, and training. While these areas are very broad, our cohort structure is designed to give you invaluable lessons from the shared experiences of your fellow companies. While there may be overlap between companies in terms of target markets, digital marketing strategies, etc., it is highly unlikely that a cohort of five companies would include two that are direct competitors. Our goal is to maximize the value of all of our companies so working with direct competitors wouldn’t be very productive.
Why didn’t you accept our application?
We receive several hundred applications for each cohort yet can only accept five. Don’t take a rejection as an indictment of your company or business model; instead, view it as a result of the quality of the competition. Keep growing your company and get ready to apply again – after all, the next cohort is only a few months away!
How far along are most of the companies in the program?
Stadia Accelerator is looking for sports companies with the highest potential for growth and return on investment. Our companies cover a wide range of sizes, generally ranging from five digits to low seven digits in revenues. While higher current revenues are a strong validation of your business model, we still value other metrics to assess your growth potential.
What does Stadia Ventures get out of this?
Stadia Ventures receives equity in your company based on a negotiated valuation at the end of the application process. We are your partners – if we can’t increase your value then we don’t make a dime.
Can you tell me more about the mentoring and networking opportunities?
One of Stadia Ventures’ core strengths is the quality of our mentor/advisor network. When you join Stadia Accelerator you are assigned a lead mentor who assumes main responsibility for your success. You are also assigned mentors who have key experience and networks within your core areas of targeted business growth. All mentors are incentivized to use the full power of their networks to help you achieve success.
Do I have to stay in St. Louis after the end of the program?
You do not have to stay in St. Louis after the program ends. If you’re a Cubs fan we may even invite you to leave before the program ends (just kidding…maybe).
How can we receive more funding after the program ends?
Stadia Accelerator intends to offer additional investment up to $300K to the best graduates of our program. After we’ve spent this much time getting you ready for the next step we don’t want to let the VCs have all of the fun!
What kinds of companies do you fund?
Stadia Accelerator funds rising sports-related start-ups that are involved in the following categories: equipment, apparel, software/apps, big data analytics, fantasy, gaming, nutrition, and training. We prefer companies with existing products and revenues; that way we are investing in “accelerating” your business as opposed to funding prototypes.
Where is the Stadia Accelerator office?
Stadia Ventures is located at T-REX (911 Washington Ave, St. Louis, MO 63101), which is a 10-story building that houses five other accelerators and over 150 startups. We are proudly located in downtown St Louis. 10 blocks from Busch Stadium (home of the St. Louis Cardinals), 8 blocks from Scottrade Center (home of the St. Louis Blues), 2 blocks from the Edward Jones Dome (home of the St. Louis Rams – they can take our team, they can’t take our Dome), a driver-wedge from the Arch and a ½ mile from the best barbecue on the planet.