Research about accelerators, main important academic research . Selection, curation of +80 academic papers and reports in business accelerators, VC, CVC, Angel Business, Startups, Serial Entrepreneurs. Insights and conclusions of the main findings. (Draft for a Msc Business Innovation Thesis)
The 2017 accelerator ranking, by SARP
Platinum Plus tier: AngelPad, Y Combinator
Platinum tier: Alchemist, Amplify LA, MuckerLab,
StartX, Techstars, U. Chicago New Venture Challenge
Gold tier: 500 Startups, gener8tor, HAX, Healthbox,
IndieBio, Mass Challenge, R/GA, SkyDeck
Silver tier: Brandery, Capital Innovators, Dreamit, Plug
and Play, REach, Yield Lab, Zero to 510
Bronze tier: Accelerprise, AlphaLab, FoodX, Health
Wildcatters, Lighthouse Labs, UpTech, XLR8UH
SELECTION OF CATEGORIES OF ACADEMIC Studies.
• Add Value
• Add Value
• Decision Making
• Performance STARTUPS
• Add Value
-Paul Graham (Co-founder of Y Combinator) 1st Accelerator
“One of the companies in the room will be worth more than all of the others put
together.... Ninety percent will ultimately fail. That makes for a very interesting
game of trying to ﬁgure out who that one company is.”
[QUOTES] #Founders OF Accelerators
“There is a start-up revolution occurring. Every major metro area in the world
will eventually be able to support an accelerator.”
-Brad Feld, Co-Founder (Techstars)
“You can build multibillion dollar companies anywhere in the world right now”
-Thomas Korte (Angelpad)
“To build a healthy ecosystem , the biggest thing you need is talent”
-Reshma Sohoni, Co-Founder(Seedcamp)
“Each city has its own ecosystems”
-Patrick de Zeeuw, Co-Founder (Startupbootcamp)
REVISION/ CONCLUSIONS of ACADEMIC PAPERS /
Hochberg Y (2015) “Accelerating Entrepreneurs and Ecosystems The Seed Accelerator Model”
Accelerators arrival in a region leads, on average , to a DOUBLING of VC funding
events and a 13X increase in the $$ amount of funding over the following 3 YEARS.
2/3 of this increase goes to non-accelerator start-ups.
The arrival of an accelerator associated with an annual increase of 104% in the
number of seed and early stage VC deals in the MSA, an increase of 289% in the
log total dollar amount of seed and early stage funding provided in the region, and
a 97% increase in the number of distinct investors investing in the region.
the presence of an accelerator leads to a shift in the general equilibrium of funding
activity in the region … an accelerator program may serve as a catalyst to draw
attention to the region…
#1a [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
from the perspective of the VC investors, accelerators serve a dual function as deal
sorters and deal aggregators. The accelerator application process screens among a
larger population of startups to identify high-potential candidates, and the program
aggregates these candidates in a single location, attracting investors who might otherwise
ﬁnd the costs of searching for opportunities in smaller regions too high to justify.
the emergence of accelerators has also led to shift in the stage composition of deals,
with a higher proportion of investments in the software and IT spaces being made in
seed and early stage companies in a region post- accelerator arrival, relative to before the
appearance of an accelerator.
Hochberg Y (2015) “Accelerating Entrepreneurs and Ecosystems The Seed Accelerator Model”
TOP 10 REGIONS with most improved STARTUP funding in US
#1 New York, #2 Los Angeles, #3 Chicago, #4 Philadelphia, #5 Portland
#6 Pittsburgh, #7 Detroit, #8 St. Louis, #9 Boulder, #10 Austin
#1b [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Hallen B, Bingham C and Cohen S(2014) “Do Accelerators Accelerate?”
Ventures that were accepted into an accelerator cohort were
generally more likely than their “almost” accepted
counterparts to be alive or acquired, had more
employees at time of data collection, and were more likely
to have raised over $1M in VC funding, with small
differences across the four cohorts.
#2 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Delgado, Mercedes, Michael E. Porter, and Scott Stern. 2013. “Deﬁning Clusters of Related Industries.”
There is a good amount of variation in the level
of accelerator specialization across
regions with a high degree of industry
#3 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Davis, S. J., J. C. Haltiwanger, and S. Schuh. (1998) Job Creation and Destruction.
Haltiwanger, John, Ron S. Jarmin and Javier Miranda. 2013. “Who Creates Jobs? Small versus Large versus Young.
the beneﬁts of accelerators for the local
entrepreneurial economy and ecosystem, given
the importance of entrepreneurial activity for
economic growth …. and the desire to spur such
#4 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
2014. Sheryl Winston Smith, Thomas J.Hannigan. “Home Run, Strike Out, or Base Hit:What is the Inﬂuence of Accelerators on Acquisition,
Quitting, and VC Financing in New Ventures?”.
accelerators contribute to substantial diﬀerences in entrepreneurial outcomes
relative to startups that receive formal angel group ﬁnancing
participation in a top accelerator program increases the likelihood and speed of exit by
acquisition as well as exit by quitting.
accelerator participation on its own does not have a statistically signiﬁcant effect on the
likelihood of attaining follow-on ﬁnancing from formal venture capitalists.
receipt of follow-on funding from VCs occurs more slowly for startups participating
in an accelerator relative to those with angel group ﬁnancing.
high status educational background increases the likelihood and time to exit by
acquisition and exit by quitting, but with smaller magnitude than the effect of accelerator
educational background increases the likelihood and time to follow-on VC funding.
high status educational background in conjunction with accelerator participation diminishes
the effect of being in an accelerator on the outcomes of interest, suggesting that accelerator
participation and high status educational background may serve as substitutes.
#5 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Bertoni, Fabio, and Alexander Peter Groh. “Cross-Border Investments and Venture Capital Exits in Europe.” Corporate Governance: An
International Review 22, no. 2 (2014): 84–99
-Strong evidence for the importance of cross-border investor M&A markets for trade
sales and weak evidence (signiﬁcance level of 10%) for the importance of cross-border IPO
markets for IPO exits.
-Cross-border VC investments therefore increase the eﬃciency of entrepreneurial
-Increase the exit-able market and reduce the misdirection of resources into
-International syndicates are quicker for write oﬀ their non performing investments.
-liquidity of the local stock markets of investees’ countries aﬀects the likelihood of
IPOs. Also valid for the relation between local M&A markets and trade-sale exits.
#6 [VC] |EXIT| IMPACT| LOCATION|
Espenlaub, Susanne, Arif Khurshed, and Abdulkadir Mohamed. “Venture Capital Exits in Domestic and Cross-Border Investments.” Journal
of Banking & Finance 53 (April 2015): 215–32.
-Half the funds of UK VC ﬁrms are invested outside their home region (UK& Ireland)
-Exit (IPO, M&A, MBO( Management buyout) and liquidation). A signiﬁcant and pronounced
difference between cross-border and domestic investments in the time to exit to both M&A
-Avg. times to exit more than 2/3 shorter in North America than anywhere also.
-Macros control( Regional economies, capital markets, and legal systems).
-IPO exit is speeded up by market liquidity and legality.
-M&A exits are speeded up by higher stock market valuations.
-IPO and M&A time to exit are slowed down by GDP(GDP per capita).
#7 [VC] |EXIT| IMPACT| LOCATION
Félix, Elisabete Gomes Santana, Cesaltina Pacheco Pires, and MA GULAMHUSSEN. “The Exit Decision in the European Venture Capital
Market.” Portugal: Universidade de Évora E ISCTE, 2008
-in Europe VC associated with ﬁnancial ﬁrms have faster exits for all exit forms.
(Trade Sales stronger) suggesting that banks have larger network of contacts facilitating
the task of ﬁnding potential buyers.
-Contracting variables have a signiﬁcant impact on the exit decision. Increases in the
number of reports and on the percentage of syndicated investments lead to shorter
durations for all exit forms.
-VC that is present in the board of directors, is longer the exit (longer duration).(Could
be that is inﬂuenced by entrepreneurs point of view).
-Pre-planned exits lead to signiﬁcantly shorter durations.
#8 [VC] |EXIT| IMPACT| LOCATION
Yu, S., (2016). “How Do Accelerators Impact the Performance of High-Technology Ventures?”.
-Accelerated companies raise less money, close down earlier and more often raise
less money conditional on closing. (Appear to be more efﬁcient investments compared to
-Accelerators help resolve uncertainty around company quality sooner. (Risk of
-Even though accelerated companies raise less money on average, the funding ratio
is lower, meaning that more money is invested in companies that eventually get acquired
than in companies that eventually close.
#9 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT|
Kräussl, Roman, and Stefan Krause. “Has Europe Been Catching up? An Industry Level Analysis of Venture Capital Success over 1985–
2009.” European Financial Management 20, no. 1 (2014): 179–205.
-Europe VC backed companies going to IPOs have closed the gap ( Not in
performance overall vs US)
-Europe VC backed companies lag behind US by M&A, or exits of seed/startup
-Avga investment and R&D are important of VC success, but only positive impact after
-Demand side of VC plays a substantial role as countries with higher entrepreneurial
activity perform better than countries with a lower TEA score.
-Idiosyncratic diﬀerences across industries seem to be more relevant than country
speciﬁc characteristics in explaining diﬀerences in performance.
-Diﬀerences in the stage at which ﬁrms received VC funding tends to be a crucial
determinant of success-mainly for European countries
#10 [VC] |EXIT|HISTORY| LOCATION|
Fehder, D. C., & Hochberg, Y. (2014). Accelerators and the Regional Supply of Venture Capital Investment.
-Accelerators have regional impact on the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
-In the MSAs, Exhibit more seed and early stage entrepreneurial ﬁnancing activity
(annual increase of 104% in VC deals, increase of 1830% in total $$ amount of
funding, and 97% increase in number of distinct investors.
-presence of an accelerator leads to a shift in the general equilibrium of funding activity
in the region, rather than merely to an effect of treatment on the treated.
-the ﬁnance activity spill overs to non accelerated companies as well.
-software and IT services sectors are greater in the industry.
-Retaining companies locally is often a primary goal for local policy makers and for
#11 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Winston-Smith, S., Hannigan, T. J. (2015). “Swinging for the fences: How do top accelerators impact the trajectories of new ventures?”.
-Accelerators contribute to substantial diﬀerences in timing vs those of AB ﬁnancing:
Increase the speed of exit through multiple channels (by acquisition, or by quitting)
-Accelerator participation increases the follow on ﬁnancing timing from VC.
#12 [ACCELERATORS] |IMPACT| EXIT
Sharma, Apoorv Ranjan, Manoj Joshi, and Balvinder Shukla. “Is Accelerator an Option? Impact of Accelerator in Start-up Eco-System!”
SSRN Scholarly Paper. Rochester, NY: Social Science Research Network, May 19, 2014.
Accelerators are very useful platform for startups.
-Startups are ﬁnding accelerators an ideal platform for strategic guidance, accelerating
their growth and fund raising process.
-Accelerated Startups are highly improved in terms of their value proposition, team
building and revenue plan.
-PE (Private equity) and VC (Venture capital) are getting higher quality startups coming out
-Overall the mortality of the startups is reduced.
#13 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Kim, J. H., Wagman, L. (2014). “Portfolio size and information disclosure: An analysis of startup accelerators”. Journal of Corporate Finance,
-Time inconsistency problem, entrepreneurs rationally anticipate accelerators eventual
portfolio size leads to a larger portfolio size and less precise signals, than the proﬁt
-policy to subsidise the accelerator’s marginal cost can promote more eﬃcient
-accelerator may only reveal favorable signals about portfolio venture to maximize
its proﬁts. This is because only when its portfolio ﬁrms raise subsequent funding does the
accelerator stands to gain from its own ownership stakes.
-accelerator may prefer to exit its investment early, prior to being fully informed, which
may ineﬃciently result of some less promissing ventures.
-ventures in portfolios of top accelerator programs may have high valuations both
because those accelerators portfolio size are small relative to their eﬃcient levels and
because the accelerators may not disclose negative signals.
#14 [ACCELERATORS] |PORTFOLIO| IMPACT|
Pauwels C, Clarysse B, Wright Mike (2016) “Understanding a new generation incubation model the accelerator”. Technovation, 50-51:13-24.
-Accelerators play an important role in stimulating entrepreneurship. What is
undeniable, though is the compelling economic logic of such organisations.
-Identify 5 key building blocks-design parameters, differents from incubation models, and
highlight the objectives of accelerators shareholders as the main driver orchestrating
the accelerator activities. Distinguish 3 different type of accelerators. (Design lens to
-the few available studies examining accelerators are largely descriptive in nature and lack a
consistent theoretical lens to study the phenomenon (Cohen and Hochberg, 2014; Miller and
-The design lens introduced by Zott and Amit in their research about business model design
(Amit and Zott, 2012; Zott and Amit, 2007, 2010) is a useful framework to study incubation
-3 diﬀerent type of accelerator (by design theme): Ecosystem builder, Deal Flow
Maker, Welfare Stimulator.
-Delineating the accelerator model as a new generation incubation model. Heterogeneity of
accelerator strategies and operations.
-Differences in the objectives of shareholders supporting or ﬁnancing the accelerator
will lead to diﬀerences in the way accelerators run their programs.
-It seems unlikely that accelerators will be proﬁtable or even sustainable without
continued ﬁnancial support for a number of years.
#15 [ACCELERATORS] |TYPE|
Hallen B, Cohen S, Bingham C (2016) DO ACCELERATORS ACCELERATE? THE ROLE OF INDIRECT LEARNING IN NEW VENTURE
-Since 2005, 650 Accelerator Programs, support over 6000 startups and collectively raised
Seedcamp- “tap into a global network of right advisors and overcome challenges you’ll face
in the fastest possible time.
Techstars-“mentorship driven” aspects of the program.
-Selected accelerators accelerate the development of new ventures.
-Ventures participating in these accelerators enjoy superior performance and reach 3
key venture development milestones (funding, revenue, and customer traction) sooner
to matched peers not participating in accelerators.
-Founder human capital ( eg. Having worked for a company that produces a lot of
startups) are not substitutes for accelerator participation and have independent effects.
-suggests that entrepreneurs also beneﬁt from intensive indirect learning early in the
entrepreneurial journey (not only by the importance of trial and error)
-Indirectly learning from others appears to be a key mechanism by which these
accelerators causally impact venture development.
-Indirect learning help entrepreneurs correct known and unknown ﬂaws and gaps in
initial business plans and identify unexpected possibilities for improvements (eg. Target
customer, go-to-market plan, technology and operations strategy, proﬁt formula).
-need for caution when choosing an accelerator, specially when considering a new and
#16 [ACCELERATORS] | IMPACT|
Hausberg, J. P., Korreck, S. (2017). “A Systematic Review and Research Agenda on Incubators and Accelerators”
-Open innovation, and social capital theory increasingly complement the resource
based view as frameworks to understand business incubation. (Theories)
-The phenomenon of private corporate incubators and accelerators gains traction,
both in entrepreneurship theory and practice.
-Scholars in management sciences consider this database (wos) the most comprehensive
and use it in systematic reviews (Albort-Morant & Ribeiro-Soriano, 2016; Dahlander & Gann,
2010; Mian et al., 2016)
-Field of business incubation matured into a recognizably distinct ﬁeld from focused on
science and technology parks (university business incubators).
-Business Incubation literature using Social capital theory and Social Network theory
(theoretical lens) grew so much in the last decade
#17 [ACCELERATORS] |THEORIES|
Hochberg, Y. V. (2015), “Accelerating Entrepreneurs and Ecosystems: The Seed Accelerator Model,” in Innovation Policy and the Economy,
Volume 16, Josh Lerner and Scott Stern editors, National Bureau of Economic Research.
-an introduction to the accelerator model and summarize recent evidence on their effects on
the regional entrepreneurial environment.
-The resulting estimations demonstrate a striking shift in the nature of the seed and early
stage funding environment for startups in accelerator-treated regions, a shift that
results primarily from additional funding events for non-accelerated companies and
the emergence of new, local investor groups. Our conclusions substantiate the need for
regional ecosystem-level analysis of the effects of accelerator programs, as they suggest
a shift in the general equilibrium environment for startup activities.
-Much of the limited research on accelerators falls into one of 2 categories: (1) conceptual
description of accelerator model (2) empirical attempts to asses whether accelerators have a
positive effect on the outcomes of the companies that participate in the program.
-From a policy perspective, this distinction is critical: if accelerators have positive
eﬀects on the ecosystem (regardless of their effects on the small number of companies
that attend them), investment in accelerator programs will have a larger impact on
#18 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Isabelle D (2013) Key Factors Affecting a Technology Entrepreneur's Choice of Incubator or Accelerator
A technology entrepreneur should consider 5 factors:
(1) The stage of their new venture
(2) The ﬁt between the entrepreneurs need and incubators mission, purpose and
(3) The selection and graduation policies
(4) The nature and extent of services provided
(5) The network of partners (legal, regulatory, technical, intellectual property, ﬁnance).
#19 [ACCELERATORS] |LOCATION| IMPACT| ECOSYSTEM
Barrehag, L., Fornell, A., Larsson, G., Mardstrom, V., Westergard, V., & Wrackefeldt, S. (2012). Accelerating Success : A Study of Seed Accelerators and Their
Deﬁning Characteristics. Chalmers University of Technology.Gothenburg, Sweden.
Bertoni, Fabio, and Alexander Peter Groh (2014).Cross-Border Investments and Venture Capital Exits in Europe.Corporate Governance: An International
Review 22, no. 2 (2014): 84–99.
Birdsall, M., Jones, C., Lee, C., Somerset, C., & Takaki, S. (2013). The Evolution of a Rapidly Growing Industry.
Caley, E., & Kula, H. (2013). Seeding Success: Canada’s Startup Accelerators. Mars Data Catalytic.
Clarysse, B., Wright, M., & Hove, J. Van. (2015). A look inside accelerators: building business.
Cohen, S. (2013). “What Do Accelerators Do? Insights from Incubators and Angels”. Innovations, 8:3/4: 19–25.
Cohen, S. (2013). How to Accelerate Learning: Entrepreneurial Ventures Participating in Accelerator Programs. North Carolina: The University of North Carolina
at Chapel Hill.
Cohen, S., & Hochberg, Y. (2014b). Accelerating Startups: The Seed Accelerator Phenomenon.
Dee, N., Gill, D., Weinberg, C., & Mctavish, S. (2015). Startup Support Programmes: What’s the diﬀerence.
Dempwolf, C., Auer, J., & D’Ippolito, M. (2014). Innovation Accelerators: Deﬁning Characteristics Among Startup Assistance Organisations. sba.gov.
Dominique Barthel, Ángela Alférez, José Martí Pellón, and Marcos Salas de la Hera (2015). VC and Private Equity in Spain Report, 2015.
Espenlaub, S., Arif K. ,Abdulkadir M. (2015) .Venture Capital Exits in Domestic and Cross-Border Investments. Journal of Banking & Finance 53 (April 2015):
Fehder, D. C., & Hochberg, Y. (2014). Accelerators and the Regional Supply of Venture Capital Investment. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2518668
Félix, Elisabete Gomes Santana, Cesaltina Pacheco Pires, and MA Gulamhussen (2008).The Exit Decision in the European Venture Capital Market. Portugal:
Universidade de Évora E ISCTE, 2008.
Hallen, B. L., Bingham, C., Cohen, S. (2016). “Do Accelerators Accelerate? The Role of Indirect Learning in New Venture Development”. Available at
Hausberg, J. P., Korreck, S. (2017). “A Systematic Review and Research Agenda on Incubators and Accelerators”. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/
Hochberg, Y. V. (2015). Accelerating Entrepreneurs and Ecosystems: The Seed Accelerator Model, in Innovation Policy and the Economy, Volume 16, Josh
Lerner and Scott Stern editors, National Bureau of Economic Research.
Hoﬀman, D. L., & Radojevich-Kelley, N. (2012). Analysis of Accelerator Companies: An Exploratory Case Study of Their Programs, Processes, and Early
Results. Small Business Institute Journal, 8(2), 54–70.
Isabelle, D. (2013). Key Factors Aﬀecting a Technology Entrepreneur’s Choice of Incubator or Accelerator. Technology Innovation Management Review,
(February), 16–22. Retrieved from http://www.timreview.ca/article/656
Kim, J.-H., & Wagman, L. (2012). Early-Stage Financing and Information Gathering: An Analysis of Startup Accelerators. SSRN Electronic Journal, 1–33. doi:
Kim, J. H., Wagman, L. (2014). Portfolio size and information disclosure: An analysis of startup accelerators. Journal of Corporate Finance, 29: 520–534.
Kräussl, Roman, and Stefan Krause (2014) Has Europe Been Catching up? An Industry Level Analysis of Venture Capital Success over 1985–2009. European
Financial Management 20, no. 1 (2014): 179–205.
Miller, P., & Bound, K. (2011). The Startup Factories.
Nesta. (2014). Startup Accelerator Programmes: a practical guide.
Pauwels C, Clarysse B, Wright Mike (2016) .Undersanding a new generation incubation model the accelerator. Technovation, 50-51:13-24.
Salido, E., Sabás, M., & Freixas, P. (2013). The Accelerator and Incubator Ecosystem in Europe.
Sharma, Apoorv Ranjan, Manoj Joshi, and Balvinder Shukla (2014). Is Accelerator an Option? Impact of Accelerator in Start-up Eco-System! SSRN Scholarly
Paper. Rochester, NY: Social Science Research Network, May 19, 2014. http://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=2438846.
Winston Smith, S., & Hannigan, T. J. (2014). Home Run, Strike Out, or Base Hit: How Do Accelerators Impact Exit and VC Financing in New Firms? Academy of
Management Proceedings, 2014(1). doi:10.5465/AMBPP.2014.13811abstract
Winston-Smith, S., Hannigan, T. J. (2015). Swinging for the fences: How do top accelerators impact the trajectories of new ventures?. Working paper.
Yu, S., (2016). How Do Accelerators Impact the Performance of High-Technology Ventures?. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2503510