A wise man once said: "go where the money is."
Our Accelerator of the Week takes that mantra to the next level-- it's a program focused on financial technology startups, especially ones that can leverage the infrastructure and data-rich API of financial services giant Yodlee.Follow the money trail (and surprisingly, give up zero % equity) as we bring you, dear reader, Accelerator #6: Yodlee Interactive Incubator.
In just one sentence, what is your accelerator called and what do you do?
The Yodlee Interactive Incubator provides financial technology startups with the tools they need to succeed: mentorship, technical support, camaraderie with other entrepreneurs, cash and free access to the Yodlee data platform.
What makes your program different or unique? And related, what’s your primary value-add?
Because we are specifically focused on the FinTech vertical, we can provide value that is unavailable in a more broad-based incubator. For example, the Yodlee ecosystem includes major financial institutions and large FinTech innovators, and we are able to bring those resources to bear, whether as mentors, concept validators, or potential customers and partners.
In addition, Yodlee’s platform of financial data is a powerful foundation for many FinTech applications. Having a period of free access to that data – along with dedicated technical support to help implement the Yodlee Interactive API – can dramatically accelerate time to market.
What do you love the most about working with startups?
Entrepreneurs are constantly trying new things: looking to disrupt the status quo or invent the future. That sense of adventure is infectious, and every member of our team is constantly inspired by our companies to keep pushing against historical constraints.
What is the hardest or most surprising part of working with startups?
Sometimes that entrepreneurial mindset of inventing the future means that our founders lose track of the quotidian details of running a business. We try to keep them grounded while still letting them fly.
Do you have a success story to share? Who are the most notable or interesting companies to go through your program?
The list of companies that have received incubation help from Yodlee Interactive is a who’s who of FinTech: Coinbase, Kabbage, LearnVest and Xero are just a few of them. One of our alums – Personal Capital – just announced a $50 million funding round.
Our current cohort has innovators in crowd-funding, mortgage processing, SMB lending, personal investing, recommendations and mobile voting.
How, if in any way, has Foundersuite helped your company?
We are excited to provide Foundersuite to our companies and think it will be a valuable tool for them as they gear up PR and fundraising.
Finally, what is your best tip for running a startup?
When it looks utterly impossible is precisely the moment when you need to give it an extra push.
Big thanks to our friends at Yodlee Interactive Incubator! Mark your calendars now for the next batch of applications, slated to start in Fall of 2015. Click here for more information.