We’re obviously modeled after an aggregation of lots of different accelerators on the market…
“If you’re looking get your startup off the ground in Los Angeles, it always helps to have help from folks with connections to the venture and angel community. One of the accelerators which recently set up shop in town which does is Amplify, which is headed by Paul Bricault, who runs Amplify and also is a Venture Partner at Greycroft Partners. Bricault was the founder of The Mailroom Fund, which was focused on early stage investments in Southern California digital media, and prior to that spent significant time at William Morris Agency. We sat down with Paul to learn a bit more about the program at Amplify.
Can you tell us a little bit about the basics behind the program?
Paul Bricault: We’re obviously modeled after an aggregation of lots of different accelerators on the market. Before we started this thing, we spent three months traveling around to accelerators around the country, in Cincinnati, Austin, San Francisco, Waterloo, and Vancouver, Canada, and New York City. Then, we went and built a best practices deck of those different models. The standard model for an accelerator is, they provide a tranche of equity, along with a suite of services that varies by different accelerator. The amount of capital varies by accelerator. We decided, after looking at Los Angeles, that what was needed most in Los Angeles, and what entrepreneurs were interested in here, was that we’d need a little bit more capital offered than other accelerators. It’s not a lot more, juts a little more, but it’s because the Los Angeles is more difficult to sustain a startup than in Cincinnati or other places. So, we are offering $40,000 to $50,000, and we’re also adding lots more services.
In particular, we’ve created a place where startups can co-locate. For instance, YCombinator works in San Francisco, because there’s such a huge proliferation of startups, working in a very collaborative environment. Because of that, you get to meet slots of people in the community, because there’s such a prolific number of entrepreneurs. You can also find help with coding, programming, someone to help check out wireframes, consulting, help with capital advisors, etc. whereas in Los Angeles, there’s sort of a paucity of those kinds of resources. Because of that, the second thing, in addition to more capital, we thought we should have a building where there is lots of entrepreneurial activity, and where they could be lots of entrepreneurs in different stages of development. I call that the freshman, sophomore, senior model. Companies in the accelerator can walk upstairs, talk to someone who’s already been funded, and get counsel on how they went through that process…”