Even though we’re a software company, we’ve very much got our eyes on the hardware movement. As startup incubators and accelerators have flourished over the last several years, we’re starting to notice an uptick in programs focused specifically on hardware.
Are you a budding hardware engineer or startup team?
Below is a list of hardware-focused startup programs. If you have any additions to the list, please let us know in the comments below!
Visit website: factorli.com
“Where humans and robots build beautiful, thought-provoking things.”
Las-Vegas based Factorli recently announced a Series A round of $10 million from Zappos founder (and budding Las Vegas tycoon) Tony Hsieh. Their goal? To become the go-to place for U.S. hardware startups by helping them prototype and turn product ideas into a manufacturing reality. This’ll be a great initiative to watch.
Flextronics: Lab IX
Visit website: labix.io
San Jose-based Flextronics works with Apple (and many others) on smartphones and other hardware devices. They recently opened up Lab IX, where they’re awarding $500,000 to each company accepted into their program.
Lab IX, based in Milpitas, focuses on companies who are less than three years old and have less than $5 million in funding. Their motto? To help startups “quickly bring disruptive hardware technologies to market.”
PCH International: Highway 1
Visit website: highway1.io
Highway 1 is a hardware incubator and accelerator run by Brady Forrest, underwritten by electronics company PCH International. Each cohort of companies who make it through the application process are put into a four month program. Among other benefits, they receive seed funding of $50,000, office and machine shop space in San Francisco, and education in manufacturing, supply chain, distribution, business management, finance, strategy and Chinese infrastructure.
Visit website: haxlr8r.com
Based out of both San Francisco and Shenzhen, HAXLR8R selects startups to work with twice a year. The program first started in 2012 and is widely recognized as the start of the new hardware revolution – since its inception, HAXLR8R has graduated over 40 companies with a combined revenues and investments in the tens of millions of dollars.
Visit website: bolt.io
Based in Boston, Bolt is a seed-stage fund that not only invest capital in hardware startups, but also staff, equipment and expertise. Bolt doesn’t consider itself an accelerator – they operate as more of an extremely active seed investor. They commit at least 6 months to a company and often end up working with companies for longer.
Bolt positions itself as a resource for later-stage startups looking to ship a product within 6-12 months.
Visit website: lemnoslabs.com
Based in San Francisco, Lemnos Labs provides early-stage startups with up to $250,000 (at a typical equity rate of $100,000 for 10%), offering intensive and hands-on time with partners, expert mentors and program alumni.
Lemnos Labs only invests in 8-12 companies per year. Each company is put through a rigorous 6-15 month program that focuses on engineering, logistics, marketing and go-to-market strategies. Participants get space in the Lemnos Labs facility and 24/7 access to partners to help accelerate product development. They focus on aerospace, robotics, transportation, agriculture and Internet of Things (IoT) applications.
Berlin Hardware Accelerator
Visit website: hardware.co
Are you a hardware startup in Europe? Applicants awarded entry into the Berlin Hardware Accelerator get to work at Europe’s biggest (and best) co-working space, Betahaus.
Visit website: alphalabgear.org
Based in Pittsburgh, AlphaLab Gear offers companies $25,000 or $50,000 in exchange for 5% or 9% common stock equity. Each company gains access to a 10,000 square foot facility, located in the heart of Pittsburgh’s entrepreneurial community.
Participants also receive a membership to TechShop Pittsburgh, and companies with a focus in robotics receive additional support from Startbot, an investment firm specializing in early-stage robotics companies.
Visit website: betaspring.com
Based in Providence, Rhode Island, Betaspring is a mentorship-driven startup accelerator for technology and design entrepreneurs. Twice per year, they run a 13-week program, providing up to $20,000 in seed capital in exchange for up to 6% in common stock equity. To date, Betaspring has helped launch more than 90 companies.
Betaspring offers a specific Physical Technology track, perfect for the aspiring hardware startup.
Visit website: springboard.com
Springboard offers a 13-week mentor-lead program at the Google campus in London and at ideaSpace at the University of Cambridge. Each year, Springboard invests in over 30 companies for between 3-6% common stock equity.
Historically, more than 50% of Springboard companies raise additional investment funding.