Pennovation Accelerator Summer 2019

The Pennovation Accelerator invites a cohort of local startups to engage in a six-week program to develop their business strategy and cultivate their network.  Cohort companies are hosted at the Pennovation Center and participate in weekly educational sessions presented by subject matter experts.  Each company is paired with an experienced mentor to advise them on their journey. And curated networking events help immerse the companies into the larger Philadelphia entrepreneurial community.

The Pennovation Accelerator concludes with Demo Day, where companies pitch to mentors, investors, and peers at the Pennovation Center.



  • Applications Open: April 15th
  • Application Deadline: May 10th [extended!]
  • Decision Notifications: May 17th
  • Program: June 10th - July 25th; with week of July 4th off
  • Demo Day: July 25th


Accelerator Structure:

Monday: Morning session with subject matter expert

Wednesday: Mentor Meetup 

Thursday: Afternoon Wrap-up & Pitch Practice
                 Curated Networking Event



  • Each company is paired with an individual mentor
  • Free desk membership at the Pennovation Center for the duration of Accelerator (6/10 - 7/26) + 1 additional month free* (until August 31st)
  • Six weeks of training from subject matter experts
  • Curated weekly networking events
  • Complimentary Amazon Web Services (AWS) credit package
  • Opportunity to pitch to investors at final Demo Day

* After completing full 6-week program


One company will have the chance to win:

  • Pennovation Center desk membership for six months following the program (for up to 4 team members)
  • Accounting Startup Package, Sponsored by Stephano Slack
  • Promotion at the PCI Ventures @ Pennovation Showcase poster session
  • Marketing through Pennovation promotional channels
  • Additional prizes to be confirmed


The 2019 Pennovation Accelerator will cover the following list of topics related to go to market strategies:

  • Market Analysis
  • Market Positioning 
  • Sales Strategy
  • Building Network Supports
  • Fundraising Strategies
  • Pitch Deck & Demo Day


Ideal applicants meet the following criteria:

  • Stage: post-MVP/Proof of Concept --> revenue less than $500K
  • Capital Raised: $0 --> less than $1M
  • Industries include (but are not limited to):
    • Consumer Products
    • Educational Technology
    • FinTech
    • Food Tech & AgriTech
    • Health Tech / Med Device
    • Robotics
    • Smart Cities & IOT


Interested in joining a dynamic group of entrepreneurs at the Pennovation Center this summer? Apply today!



Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How many companies will be accepted into the program?
A: Up to 10


Q: Do I have to give up any equity?
A: No


Q: Will you sign an NDA? How do I know you won’t steal my idea?
A: Just like other accelerators and VC firms, we do not sign NDAs. We will respect the confidentiality of your venture / idea.


Q: We’ve been working on our startup for a while. Is the accelerator appropriate for us?
A: We are happy to work with more established startups. In fact, you are required to have a product or at least an MVP that’s ready to market and iterate on.


Q: Do I have to be in the Philadelphia region?
A: Yes, all of the events will take place in Philadelphia, and we don’t have a way for people to participate remotely.


Q: Does our company or team need to be Penn-affiliated?
A: No, the Accelerator is open to all companies that are in the Philadelphia region.


Q: Does our company need to be incorporated?
A: No, the current legal status of your startup does not matter to us.


Q: Does the Accelerator cost money?
A: There is no cost associated with the Pennovation Summer Accelerator.  Accepted companies will have desk membership during the length of the accelerator program.  


Q: Where will the events take place?
A:  Pennovation Center (3401 Grays Ferry Ave)


Q: Do I need co-founders?
A: Company teams of two or more are more likely to succeed, and that’s what we recommend for startups.


Q: What is the timeline of the application process?
A: The application window is open through May 3rd. We will review applications and make final company selections by May 17th.


Still have questions? No problem. Contact the Pennovation Team at

Pennovation Accelerator Summer 2019