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Frequently Asked Questions

Updated: 05/03/2019

Do I have to give up any equity or intellectual property (IP) to participate in the accelerator?

No, accelerator participants do not give up any equity or intellectual property (IP) in exchange for the resources that we provide. Teams will retain the title to and full ownership of their organization and concepts, including any software, designs, research, or other intellectual property they develop.

Who is eligible to participate?

The accelerator is designed for individuals over the age of 18 who are United States citizens or legal permanent residents at the time of entry and for all validly formed legal U.S. entities with a primary place of business is in the United States. If applying as a team of individuals, only the team lead must meet these eligibility requirements.

How is the funding provided to participants?

The funding will be non-dilutive and issued by Luminary Labs. If you are applying as an entity, the funds will be distributed to the entity. If you are applying as an individual or team of individuals, the funds will be distributed to the team lead that is designated in the application. Funds will be distributed using electronic payment. The team lead is responsible for paying all applicable taxes and any distribution of funds to team members.

Are there restrictions on how the funding can be used?

Once teams accept the funds, they may spend it as they see fit. While we encourage teams to use the funding for expenses associated with participation in the accelerator, such as travel to accelerator events and costs associated with product development, we have no requirements for its use. Teams will also not be required to report on how the funds are spent.

Can for-profit organizations apply?

Yes, we do not require any specific type of team or entity structure.

Can I participate in the accelerator if I am a single person, rather than an organization or team of individuals?

A team can be a single individual, but we encourage single applicants to consider teaming up to ensure they have the necessary expertise for success. If you apply as an individual, please address how you fulfill the ability criteria.

Do you only accept teams developing physical tools or hardware?

Yes, there must be some original physical or hardware component of your tool. However, your tool may have non-physical components (e.g., software or cloud integration).

Do I have to be, or plan on becoming, an incorporated company to participate in the accelerator?

All members of the cohort will be expected to determine long-term sustainability and scalability plans. However, there are many ways of achieving this and incorporation is not required.  

If I am selected to join the accelerator, do I have to participate?

If you accept funding, you are required to fully participate in the accelerator, which includes participating in all required activities and attending all in-person events.

Must every team member to participate in all accelerator activities?

At least one member of the participating team must attend all of the required activities in the accelerator. The full team is not expected to participate in all activities.

Is the accelerator a full-time commitment?

We do not require that teams commit to this full time, but the accelerator is a time-intensive program. While the majority of the accelerator will be virtual, at least one team member must attend the in-person events, including Boot Camp and the Tool Foundry Showcase. Teams are also expected to complete all exercises and attend scheduled learning sessions each week. We will work with teams at the start of the accelerator to address time constraints.

How is Tool Foundry funded?

The accelerator is a Luminary Labs initiative funded by philanthropic grants from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and Schmidt Futures.

Are there limitations on what other activities I can participate in during accelerator, such as raising funding?

As long as the activities do not interfere with teams’ ability to participate in all required elements of the accelerator, there are no limitations on what teams do outside of the accelerator.

Have more questions? Email us.

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