500 Startups, a Silicon Valley-based business accelerator, has announced its plans to finance five Bitcoin companies with US$100,000 each.
These bitcoin start-ups are part of the so-called Batch 9 – a group of 30 companies who will be working for four months within the accelerator. 500 Startups provides infant companies with up to $250,000 in funds, their startup accelerator program, and events targeted towards startups.
1) Money! - According to 500 Startup’s info page, Batch 9 will start off with a net wire of $75,000 – companies are charged $25,000 to participate in the program and none of the startup’s money is lost.
2) Complete access to the 500 network – with over 1000 company founders and 225 mentors, Batch 9 will make connections with engineers, marketers, designers, and founders from around the globe
3) Distribution – 500 Startup has in-house distribution experts who will help word of mouth spread and make the company grow
4) Brand and PR – 500 Startup is a pretty good name to have on your resume. These companies will no doubt get a second look when they see their affiliation
5) Working space – 500 Startup has a 10,000 sq. ft. office in Silicon Valley or at their San Francisco location.
Sean Percival, who operates the incubation for Batch 9, explained
how he will try to generate a positive impact for the Bitcoin companies:
“I’m looking to bring in thought leaders in Bitcoin that can help them, and to help them find the right investors because there’s not many of them.”
Furthermore, Mr. Percival added that because the total available Bitcoin market itself isn’t that large, the amount of investors is scarce. “Consumer adoption is very low right now, and it’s not growing at the pace it probably needs to.”
So why $100,000? Mr. Percival emphasized how most startups lack software developers, a key yet expensive asset: “In most cases, they need to hire developers. And developers are costly. With that money, it’s not just one guy in a corner trying to make it work.”
The five Bitcoin companies are:
Monetsu – focusing on payment processing
Coinalytics – brings real-time Bitcoin data to users via information analytics and news
GoGoCoin – sells bitcoins in form of gift cards, perfect for first time bitcoiners.
Bonifide.io – anonymous ratings of transactions help users build up a reputation score
Neuroware – an HTML5 wallet
Godspeed to these Bitcoin companies in the program, or as it has been called by previous batches, “the most awesome summer camp they’ve ever attended.”