2019 UPAYA SOCIAL VENTURES ACCELERATOR PROGRAM

Application dates: 23rd January to 22nd February, 2019

 

Upaya Social Ventures invests in early-stage entrepreneurs who share our mission of fighting poverty through job creation. By creating dignified jobs for those in extreme poverty, we aim to provide a hand up, not a handout, to those who need it most. To date, the companies in Upaya's investment portfolio have created nearly 12,000 jobs for people living in extreme poverty.

Upaya's 2019 accelerator program will be focused on identifying and investing in business that creates jobs (full-time, part-time or income enhancement) for the poorest of poor. We will select 8-12 entrepreneurs who are working to scale their early-stage job-creating companies with investments and consulting support. From the 8-12 enterprises, Upaya will invest up to $50,000 in up to three enterprises at the end of the accelerator program

 

WATCH THE WEBINAR

Upaya hosted an informational webinar on the accelerator program and the application process. You can view a recording of the webinar here!


 

2018 Agribusiness Cohort

SELECTION CRITERIA

 

 

FOR-PROFIT

Enterprises must be legally incorporated as a for-profit business in India.

 

EARLY-STAGE

Enterprises must be less than 5 years old with revenue-generating customers.

 
 
 

PRIOR FUNDING

Enterprises have raised no more than 50 Lakhs in funding but are looking to raise more funding within 6-8 months. 

 

SOCIAL IMPACT

Companies that create jobs for those living in extreme poverty or significantly improve income levels by purchasing from them.

 

SOCIAL IMPACT

Upaya defines a job as a full-time or part-time engagements that helps people work themselves out of extreme poverty. People employed through Upaya’s portfolio companies:

  • increase their daily food expenditure for their families,

  • earn a reliable income that enables them to save for future needs,

  • receive training to strengthen their skills,

  • are able to purchase assets like motorcycle/bicycle or refrigerator.

Upaya has invested in companies that:

  • directly employ the extreme poor as employees (Saahas Waste Management has on its payroll waste collectors);

  • provide income as suppliers (Tamul Plates provides income by purchasing arecanut leaves from local residents) or

  • help develop skills for the poor to enable them to get better jobs (Maitri trains and places caregivers securing employment for women from disadvantaged Northeast communities.)

  • provide substantial increase of income through aggregation (Krishi Star increases and stabilizes farmer incomes by building a food brand that focuses on value-added processing and market linkages).


PROGRAM BENEFITS

Accelerator Program benefits include:

  • Access to Upaya funding (up to $50,000 equity investment in each company). Upaya selects up to three enterprises for investment from each cohort.

  • Additional access to investors through pitch and networking opportunities to bring on co-investors.

  • 4-month long program, involves three class room workshops focussing on helping companies improve their business model in three functions – Finance, Social Impact & Communication and Organizational Development

  • Additionally, offline support in helping companies refine their business plan, pitch deck and financial model.

  • Provide access to network of experts, investors and mentors.

The cost for travel and logistics for the program will be covered by Upaya Social Ventures.


TIMELINE

Selection

Upaya will select the final 8-12 entrepreneurs by the first week of May, 2019. The selection process is as follows:

  • First Round of Application – 23rd January 2019 to 22nd February, 2019.
    A simple set of questions requiring 10-15 minutes to determine if the applicants meet the criteria stated above.
    Click here to submit your first round application now!

  • Second Round of Application – 8th March 2019 to 22nd March, 2019.
    A more detailed questionnaire that dives deeper into the applicant's business model and social impact.

  • Announcement of selected enterprises for the Accelerator cohort – 2nd May, 2019.

Accelerator Program:

  • First Workshop: 12th - 14th June, 2019

  • Second Workshop: 24th – 26th July, 2019

  • Third Workshop: 9th - 11th October, 2019

The Upaya team plans to visit each of the selected enterprises to work with the enterprises in identifying key challenges and gaps in the business and providing assistance in addressing challenges around social impact and financial management.

The investment decision will be announced at the end of the third workshop.


APPLY NOW TO JOIN THE ACCELERATOR

Upaya will be accepting first round applications for the accelerator program through 22nd February, 2019. Click below to submit your application today!


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