It’s going to be a welcoming event unlike any other. Tonight, DreamIt Ventures Philadelphia is having its kickoff event to launch and announce this year’s accelerator class of twelve companies that were chosen from around the country and Israel. Sponsored by DreamIt Ventures and Comcast Ventures, the accelerator is called DreamIt Philly.
“We are introducing them to he Philly startup scene, the major players, investors, former DreamIt companies, and our partners such as Comcast Ventures so it’s just a big welcome party for them,” says Patrick Fitzgerald, the DreamIt Ventures Philadelphia Managing Director.
The kickoff event is scheduled for tonight from 6-8pm in Comcast’s global HQ. Along with Fitzgerald, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter will make opening remarks. Also in attendance will be former Governor of Pennsylvania and DNC Chairman Ed Rendell.
Similar to most accelerators, the teams will be visited by investors and mentors, but there is something that makes the DreamIt Ventures accelerator unique.
“The partners who are involved, myself included, are recently exited entrepreneurs who not that long ago had been in their same shoes,” says Fitzgerald. “So it will be good to have that one-to-one contact with myself and the other partners that are involved in the cycle, as well as the mentors.”
According to a recent DreamIt blog post, “since DreamIt’s inauguration in the great city of Philadelphia in 2008, they have proudly launched more than 157 companies worldwide including Adaptly, LevelUp, Parsely, SeatGeek, MindSnacks, SnipSnap, Peeractive, TrendKite and Biomeme.”
Friday, September 5th is the official day of the program and Demo Day is scheduled for December 3rd. Regardless of if the teams leave with funding, Fitzgerald says the entrepreneur’s network and professional connections from this program will last a lifetime.
“What I would like to see is three, four, five years from now those companies who were in DreamIt come back to us because they are successful and have exited. I hope they are entrepreneurs who want to come back and be mentors,” says Fitzgerald.
NOTE: Tech Cocktail is hosting a special Startup Showcase & Mixer event in Philly on September 24th. Please join us!