The Founder Cohort program works with 20 to 25 venture-scale, seed-stage startups over the course of six months. It is now in its sixth cohort. The program, which begins with a 3-day bootcamp followed by monthly workshops, provides founders with a roadmap to guide them through the process of increasing revenue, securing investment, and growing their team.
Participants must be based in Washington and have a team or co-founder, a product that is at the “minimum viable product” stage, has some customers or investment, and has less than $1 million in revenue.
In addition to guidance and mentorship, the program provides credits for Amazon Web services, discounts on software products and coworking spaces, and access to WTIA’s health insurance and 401(k) programs.
Of the 52 firms included in Cohort 5 (Q1-Q2 of 2021) and Cohort 6 (Q4 2021-Q1 2022), 26 were at least partly women-owned. For context, less than 20 percent of firms with employees in the U.S. are women-owned, and women-owned firms received less than 3 percent of venture capital in 2020.
In total, WTIA’s startup programs have served more than 500 founders in the Seattle metro area.