apply for our 2019 cohort!
deadline is march 10th
LaunchVT provides intensive mentorship and business acceleration services to cohorts of eight entrepreneurs. The program runs from the beginning of April to the beginning of June and features a Demo Day where we award $35,000 in cash and over $100,000 in services. All eight members of the cohort receive mentorship specific to the needs of their business, and participate in office hours, peer strategy sessions, focused trainings, and pitch prep workshops. Each member of the cohort will leave the accelerator with a refined and polished pitch deck, a Launch Report (executive summary) and extensive connections to local investors and business service providers. In selecting our cohort and awarding cash and services we look for 1. Viability: Quality of the product, business model and team, 2. Scalability: Market opportunity and revenue growth potential, and 3. Impact: Job creation and positive economic impact on VT.
These private networking opportunities connect members of the LaunchVT cohort with over 75 individuals and companies that can help them build their businesses. With time for informal networking and structured conversation, finalists get one-on-one access to one of our greatest community resources - our people.
Our workshops are dedicated technical assistance sessions led by content experts and LaunchVT advisors. They provide an opportunity for our entrepreneurs to work strategically on some of the most important aspects of their business with the support of experienced professionals.
Our peer sessions allow members of the cohort to offer feedback and assistance to each other, an invaluable element of the program. We select eight of the most exciting entrepreneurs in the state and give them plenty of time to share their expertise and collaborate. We also bring in LaunchVT alumni to share their stories and answer questions from the cohort.
Members of the cohort are assigned a dedicated coach with industry specific experience. Coaches work with their team on every aspect of their business and provide one on one support as they develop their pitch for Demo Day. Coaches also provide detailed feedback and strategic advice to help their team prepare a polished Launch Report for applying to other accelerators and investment opportunities.
LaunchVT will award $35,000 in cash to up to three businesses. LaunchVT coaches will make an award and cohort members will present at Demo Day for cash awards from investors and the audience.
Each member of the cohort will be awarded a suite of in-kind services from local businesses. LaunchVT partners with local service providers to offer our cohort members access to over $100,000 in marketing, legal, accounting, design, and work space support. Click the link below to check out all of the amazing in-kind service providers supporting our entrepreneurs!
Laury Saligman’s career has focused on conservation, from renewable energy, to forestland management, and most recently to investing in companies solving environmental problems. She is an active investor with Investors’ Circle, Branch Venture Group, and Next Wave Ventures. In addition, she is helping to form the Vermont Women’s Investor Network (WIN), aimed at closing the gender gap in early-stage finance. Laury has worked at the US Environmental Protection Agency, Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Conservation International, Ethical Marketplace, a renewable energy start-up, and a web-based company focused on indoor environmental quality, which she created and sold. In 2006, she and her husband started Conservation Collaboratives to invest in forestland and develop new models for conservation finance, including payments for ecosystem services. The company owns and manages over 1,000 acres of forestland in northeastern Vermont and built the Victory Hill mountain bike area. Laury serves on the Board of Directors of Burlington-based Packetized Energy as well as the National Museum of American Jewish History. She holds an MBA, focused on sustainability, from UVM; an MS in Environmental Health Sciences from Harvard; and a BS in Physics from Georgetown.
Mike grew up in the small town of Georgia, just north of Burlington, VT. He has worked in the tech industry his entire career, and loves being an entrepreneur and starting up companies. In 1998, he and four others started Dealer.com, a digital marketing company focused on the automotive industry. Dealer.com was the first in its industry to bring digital marketing solutions to the automotive sector for OEMs, large dealer groups, and independent groups. Mike served as the COO for 16 years, and during that time the team grew the company to more than 7,000 clients, 850 employees, and exceeded revenues of $230mm. The founding team successfully sold the company for over $1.1B in 2013 to publicly traded Dealertrack.
Mike is currently the CEO of Fluency, based in Burlington. He formed the privately-funded company with three others, and the company provides a business-to-business digital advertising platform whose clients are industry-focused digital marketing companies.
Aaron is Managing Director and leads east coast equity and venture lending efforts for TriplePoint Capital, a venture financing company that provides growth capital to technology, tech services and healthcare IT companies. Prior to joining TriplePoint in 2014, Aaron spent 10 years, first as a Principal then as a Partner, at Lighthouse Capital Partners, a venture lending firm based in Cambridge, MA and Menlo Park, CA. Previous to Lighthouse, Aaron worked at GrandBanks Capital, an early-stage venture capital fund in Boston, where he was Board observer and spent considerable time doing strategy and business development work with a couple portfolio companies, including WHERE (acquired by eBay). From 1999-2002, Aaron was an investment banker, doing M&A and corporate finance at Robertson Stephens. Aaron graduated from Middlebury College in 1999. He lives in Shelburne.