Milwaukee startup Urban Misfit Ventures
has been selected to participate in a national accelerator offered by Hubspot
and General Catalyst
Both based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Hubspot is a sales and marketing software platform with more than 60,000 global customers and General Catalyst is a venture capital firm that has raised about $5 billion since it was established in 2000.
Their free accelerator, Elevate
, is a four-week virtual program launched this month to train early-stage companies in inbound marketing and the formation of successful growth plans. Elevate begins June 4 and will be taught via live online classes. The curriculum will cover the customer lifecycle and capital fundraising. At the conclusion of the accelerator, some of the startups from the program will have the opportunity to pitch for investment at Hubspot’s Inbound event in Boston in September.
Urban Misfit Ventures is the parent company of content and influencer marketing venture IEEG and events company MKE Misfits. Quentin Allums, chief executive officer of Urban Misfit Ventures, had already been accepted to speak about personal branding at Inbound as an individual, but Elevate would provide the company an opportunity to pitch at the event, as well, said Israel Lugo III, chief operating officer of UMV.
“We were encouraged to apply to Elevate and as we started looking more into it and as a rapidly growing startup here in Milwaukee, we wanted to make sure we weren’t just Milwaukee-based,” Lugo said. “We wanted to grow more outside the city.”
Lugo said there were thousands of applicants for Elevate, and the organizers are still finalizing the list of accepted startups, but it is expected to total about 200.
“There’ll be some really cool things going on in the program itself to make sure it’s real-world applicable skills and not just the general stuff that you can get out of a book,” he said.
About 20 startups will be selected to pitch at Inbound based on video pitches they create at the conclusion of Elevate, Lugo said.
“We’re excited to get rolling and learn from the largest names in the entrepreneur space,” he said. “Not only will this partnership help us obtain new customers, but it will help us create a new customer experience for existing clients.”
"HubSpot would not be where it is today were it not for the guidance and support of our early advisors and investors," said Dharmesh Shah, chief technology officer and co-founder of HubSpot, in a statement. "With Elevate, we're going beyond providing capital to give these growing startups the knowledge and tools they need to succeed. I'm excited to team up with some of the best and brightest to give back to the next generation of growing companies."