What are the eligibility and acceptance requirements?

We are looking for businesses that are beyond the conceptual stage and have a team committed to the vision. You should have raised less than $500,000 in funding for your business so that we can have a true impact on helping you grow. This is not just a financial investment for our investors.

Applicants are selected based on their business idea, team member’s skills and background, and the team’s ability to execute. We also consider whether InventiveLabs can have an impact on their success and growth as part of the selection process. Unlike prior years, you do not have to have a team member with a learning difference to qualify, but we certainly do think teams with diverse brain-types can build the greatest companies.

Companies need to be based in the USA.

If I do not win an investment at the Pitch Competition, does InventiveLabs invest in companies

Aside from the investment prize being offered, InventiveLabs does not directly invest in the companies that compete in the Pitch Competition. However, if your company requires funding to launch, by participating in our accelerator we go through how to prepare a compelling pitch deck for investors. The co-founders of InventiveLabs have raised multiple rounds of angel and venture capital in excess of $40 Million and can share this knowledge with you. InventiveLabs can provide introductions to investors when you are ready for investment.

I have been selected for the Pitch Competition - Do I need to take a business booster session?

No, it is not required. If your company has all the bases covered and you do not need additional help - these sessions are purely optional.

That said, we have found that many people starting companies have gaps in their knowledge that they need to fill to become successful entrepreneurs. The business booster sessions are designed to fill these gaps in a laser-focused way matched to your needs. They are not like business school classes that simply survey a topic. These sessions are tactical based upon the needs of the attendees.

Do I need to give up equity if I win the investment?

Investment will take the form of a convertible note, SAFE, or another debt/equity instrument that matches the businesses needs. Depending upon your situation, there will be some form of ownership taken for the investment unless it is a pure debt instrument. This will be finalized after the awards ceremony.

Our mission is to be additive to any company for which we source investment. Our intent is to provide an attractive source of financing to help you achieve growth.

How do I qualify for an internship at a company?

Our career prep program is all about digging deep, and exploring various career options that align best with your strengths. If one of our partner companies has a potential position that is a match for your strengths, and you can envision working at that company for a career, then we will begin prepping you for that position and an interview. If you have skills to build to be successful in that role, we will work closely with you during the program to ensure you are ready to hit the ground running if you are selected for the internship.

Am I guaranteed a spot as an intern with a partner company?

Like life, you will have to earn it. We have partners that are willing to offer positions to candidates that we recommend, and have shown diligence in their approach to learning and preparing for the position. Who we recommend reflects on the Lab, so we want to ensure that you are prepared and ready to shine in your internship role. We are up for the challenge if you are! If for some reason, you are not selected, we make sure you have been properly networking in your chosen field and are working on alternatives throughout the program. 

Do I need a specific idea already to join the Entrepreneurship Program?

Absolutely not. Some of the people attending the program have multiple ideas they are considering, but don't know which to pick. Some have no particular idea, but are passionate about something in their lives, and want to create a business around that passion. And, some just want to start a business and don't know where to begin.

So this is definitely not a requirement. In fact, it may be best to join with an open mind and see where it takes you.

How do I learn skills for my chosen career?

After our first step of matching you with a career that fits your interest and skills. We then help you map out a plan to get the training you need. The plan will include networking with individuals already in that industry, and hopefully identifying a mentor. Sometime the plan includes taking an online course (such as a computer programming language) while at the Lab, that we can help you complete. Sometimes the program includes taking an outside training course in conjunction with being at the Lab. In all cases, it is an achievable plan that is designed to help you reach your goal with structure and accountability provided by the Lab!

Can I get funding for my idea?

If you have a truly “investible” idea, the InventiveLab Pitch Competition has investors funding the prize.

That said, InventiveLabs does not directly invest in the companies started during our entrepreneurship program. However, if your company requires funding to launch, we help you prepare a pitch deck for investors. For the right companies, we can also make introductions, but many of our teams work with friends and family for their initial round of funding. In the early stages, investors are investing in the individual(s) as much as the idea, so tapping your network usually makes the most sense. Once you have traction, angel investors will take notice.

What is the application process like?

We have a brief written application so that we can get to know you better. Spelling errors and typos are encouraged! Bullet points save us reading unnecessary fluff, but fluff if you must...

After reading your application, we will likely setup in person, or videoconference meetings to discuss potential goals while at the Lab. We want to make sure we can help you get to where you want to be or it is not in either of our best interests to have you join the Lab.