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Applications are now open for a new Northern-based accelerator run by Baltic Ventures.

Accelerator 2023 is looking for early-stage tech companies, with successful applicants to receive equity backing and access to mentors.

In 2022, Beauhurst found that 50% of announced equity deals and 69% of investment was deployed in London-based tech companies, while the North West secured only 6%. 

Made possible by a £4.1 million investment from Mayor Steve Rotheram and the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, over the next five years Baltic Ventures aims to create a platform and community to support tech companies to access angel and VC investment without needing to relocate to London.

The programme is open to highly scalable companies with an early product or prototype and the potential to make positive changes in the world. Each successful company joining the programme will receive an initial £50,000 in equity backing, alongside a tailored four-month programme that includes mentoring, masterclasses and networking with investors who have the potential to provide follow-on funding.

Those accepted onto the programme will also gain access to a coaching team of exited founders and industry specialists who will seek to position them within the international investor market.

These include Carl Wong and David Woods of LivingLens, a video technology company focusing on the market research and customer experience sectors which was acquired by Silicon Valley-based Medallia in February 2020 for $26m.

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In addition, Mo Aldalou, previously of Tech Nation, joins as programme director, deploying over a decade’s worth of knowledge and experience in business and tech scaling to help build a world-class accelerator within the region.

“On each programme, we will be working with a maximum of 10 companies to offer each founding team a tailored programme to optimise their success,” said CEO Claire Lewis. “As a platform, our ambition is to break patterns of bias by creating an inclusive space where the best founders can succeed, and anyone has the opportunity to realise their company’s potential.”

“We will give a platform to underserved founders building exceptional companies, by connecting founding teams with investors, talent and mentors.”

Rotheram said: “Baltic Ventures will help us identify and unlock the potential of early-stage companies and back them with the equity and mentoring they need to succeed. 

“There’s no reason our area shouldn’t one day be able to stake its claim as a Silicon Valley of the North – and attract the many thousands of jobs and training opportunities it will create in a key industry of the future.”

Aldalou added: “Having engaged with and supported hundreds of founders over the last five years, I’ve seen first-hand that great founders can come from anywhere and be anyone. 

“We operate from the Liverpool City Region, but we are looking for ambitious founders from across the UK and the world while playing our part in establishing LCR as a global tech destination.

“Being a founder can be lonely and challenging and the scaling journey is not without its pitfalls – but having access to a network of peers, coaches, mentors, investors and later-stage founders can be transformational to a company’s growth trajectory. 

“We’re incredibly excited to launch applications to Accelerator 2023 and I look forward to working closely with our first cohort.”

Applications close in June 2023, with Accelerator 2023 starting in September.

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