VENTURE FUND

How big is your fund?

Fund I is $10M

What is your investment focus?

We have a specific interest in backing innovative thinkers using technology to advance the future of work, finance, health, and media.

Where do you invest?

At this time we exclusively invest in companies based in the United States.

Do you invest in Series A rounds?

We are a currently focused on the pre-seed stage but may occasionally invest in the Series A round of our portfolio companies.

How long do you take to decide?

In most cases, founders can expect a response from us within 48 hours after our investment call.

Are you a diversity fund?

Yes, we do have a diversity focus and look for companies with at least one Black, Latinx, or Female Co-founder and/or Chief Executive Officer. We invest in companies based on a startup’s business model/unit economics and the character of the founders who lead these companies.

Do you operate and invest via an accelerator?

Yes, we do operate an accelerator — ten (10) of our annual investments come directly from our accelerator program. 

ACCELERATOR

How often is the accelerator held?

We conduct two 12-week cohorts annually.

Where is the accelerator held?

The accelerator is held in Atlanta, Ga at the Centennial Tower. However, programming is currently conducted virtually.

How many companies are accepted into the accelerator?

A total of five companies are accepted per cohort.

Do you offer investment capital to participants?

We invest in all companies that take part in our accelerator.  The investment is structured as a convertible security. Companies receive an investment of $100,000 for around 5% of their company (subject to dilution at the time of conversion of our convertible security).

The convertible security has certain special rights for Vertical404, including the right to make a follow-on investment of an additional $500,000 or 20% of your next priced round of $1,000,000 or more, whichever is lower, which expires after the conversion of our convertible security.

Are the investment terms negotiable?

Unfortunately, they are not – The $100K investment for 5% equity are standard terms for participation in our accelerator.

Does it cost money to participate in the accelerator?

Yes – We charge $25,000 per company to participate, but these fees can be deducted from our investment amount so you don’t have to pay out of pocket. 

As mentioned above, our gross investment is $100,000. The program fee of $25,000 is deducted from the gross amount which helps to cover basic costs of running the program – leaving you with $75,000 in operating capital and access to an expansive professional network.

What are the benefits of participating in the accelerator?

Each cohort is a 12-week program designed to drive the success & economic impact of our cohort companies.

Mentorship: You will have access to the Vertical404 team, seasoned entrepreneurs, experienced investors, and individuals with considerable expertise in their field to give feedback and offer guidance. 

Help with Distribution: Whether it’s brand positioning, analytics, SEM, SEO, SMM, community building and etc — Our in-house team will help you implement growth strategies that get your business where it needs to be.

Fundraising: You will learn how to run an effective fundraising process, how and when to talk to investors, and how to effectively tell your story.

Network: Our network consists of a diverse set of founders, engineers, designers, marketers, and mentors equipped to assist in the growth of your business.

Continued Support: Upon graduation of the accelerator, founders receive an additional 12-months of support as we are committed to being a continued resource to our alumni as they work to reach their next growth milestones.

If accepted, do I have to attend the entire 12-weeks?

We want you to get the most out of the program and recommend that founders actively participate. All cohort sessions, workshops, events, and speakers will not be recorded or live-streamed, so if you are not present, you will miss the content. 

I’ve applied and haven’t heard back! When will I get an answer?

We receive thousands of applications for each batch and we review each one individually.  We try to respond to everyone with a yes or no, but it could take up to a few weeks to get a response.

Should I apply again if I am rejected?

Yes, definitely!  There is no downside to applying more than once. Many of our most successful founders were not accepted on their first try, but chose to keep making progress on their business, reapply to the program, and were ultimately accepted.

EDUCATION

V404 Academy

V404 Academy is an online and on-demand course designed to guide aspiring entrepreneurs through the sequential process of launching a business. From ideation to launch, our 10 module program equips users with the ability to confidentiality turn their entrepreneurial aspirations into an operative business. 

Tech Bootcamps + Workshops

A series of technology-focused bootcamps and workshops designed to prepare individuals for employment in the tech economy. 

Covering 

Data Analytics | Machine Learning | UI/UX Design | Software Engineering | Search Engine Marketing

Networking + Community

Our networking and community programming is designed to build meaningful relationships among people of color who either work in the tech industry or aspire to do so.