Frequently Asked Questions

  • Here's the scoop on how we work...

    Launched in 2009, Betaspring is a top-ranked accelerator for technology-enabled ventures. Our mission is simple: help great founders built great companies.  Our portfolio includes 200+ founders from eight countries and nearly every state in the U.S. 

    In 2015, we launched RevUp by Betaspring, the first startup accelerator for “revenue-first” startups—companies where growth through revenue is the primary goal. 

    RevUp builds on Betaspring’s history and experience accelerating 89 companies and managing a portfolio that's raised $50MM in follow-on funding. Here's how it's unique:

    --We work with companies that are already generating revenue.
    --We don’t take equity. RevUp gets a return as revenue scales.
    --Our program leverages special resources to help companies acquire customers and grow revenue more quickly.
    --We aren’t unicorn hunters. Our model doesn’t depend on exits. This expands the type of companies we can accelerate and invest in.
    --We've added a Boston location, making it even easier for companies across New England to connect with us.
    --RevUp supports a huge swath of companies that have the potential to be highly profitable, impact the world, and return value to investors. It’s an exciting alternative to the ‘go-billion or go-home’ philosophy of startup investing.

    What’s RevUp?

    RevUp is the first startup accelerator for revenue-first companies--ventures where growth through revenue is the primary goal.  

    Who’s behind RevUp?
    RevUp was created by Betaspring. We’ve been running a top ranked startup accelerator since 2009. We’ve accelerated 89 companies and our portfolio has raised $50M in follow-on funding and produced three acquisitions. After working with hundreds of companies, we think the world is missing something big by focusing exclusively on driving companies toward outsized exits to create investor returns. Betaspring launched RevUp in 2015, in partnership with investor Bill Cesare, to address this need.

    What makes RevUp unique?
    1) RevUp is the first accelerator for companies that are focused on growth through customer acquisition and revenue. Our accelerator program reflects this priority and includes resources like a shared growth team to enable companies to act fast on revenue-enhancing opportunities.

    2) We invest $75,000 in each company we accelerate but do not take equity. Companies return the investment as a 2) percentage of revenue over a 36-month period.  

    3) RevUp’s model opens a new stream of companies to investors--those with the potential to be very profitable, but that don’t rely upon an exit to generate a return. It’s a major innovation to how investors seek return on early stage investments, and a powerful way to help more founders be successful.

    Why RevUp?
    With RevUp, Betaspring was inspired by companies and founders that successfully use revenue as a primary driver of growth. There are many--93% of the companies on the Inc 500 list of fastest growing companies have not taken VC dollars. As investors, mentors, and operators of a full-time accelerator, we’ve seen first-hand the missed opportunities that an obsession with exits can produce.  Today’s definition of ‘venture-scale’ ignores many companies that have the potential to be profitable and impact the world in major ways. RevUp is built for them. 

    Who is RevUp for?
    RevUp works with and invests in companies generating $10-15K per month, with significant growth potential. These companies are technology-enabled and reach customers through repeatable processes. This includes, but is not strictly limited to, companies in SaaS, software, e-commerce, consumer products, and technology services. 

    How does RevUp work?
    Companies participating in RevUp receive $75,000 in cash and immersion in a three-month program focused on increasing customer acquisition and revenue. RevUp is an intensive program requiring significant in-person participation from founders and senior members of the company team.  

    What does the accelerator program offer beyond cash investment?
    The tools and knowledge that Betaspring has built over six years--expert mentorship, growth hacking, strategic partnering, inbound marketing, team building--are invaluable to revenue-first companies.  Throughout our 3-month program, RevUp focuses on experimentation and action that increases customer acquisition and revenue, helping early stage companies with revenue grow faster on their own steam. In addition to expanding our mentor pool of founders who built revenue first companies, we’ve also added features to our program, like a shared growth team, to enable companies to act fast on revenue-enhancing opportunities.

    Is RevUp “anti-equity?”
    No. Some of our favorite companies--including many in our portfolio--are equity funded.  Putting our know-how to work for revenue-first companies is not in opposition to big-win venture capital. It’s complementary, widening the pipe to include startups and founders underserved by equity-based accelerators. Bonus: some companies that begin as revenue first later decide to take venture dollars. It’s not either/or.  With RevUp, we widen the pipe to include a huge swath of companies that have the potential to grow big, create jobs, change the world AND return value to investors. It’s a real alternative to the ‘go-billion or go-home’ philosophy that dominates current thinking about startup investment.

    Where does the RevUp accelerator programming happen?
    RevUp is run by Betaspring. We have offices in Providence--our headquarters--and in Boston. 

    Is the program residential?
    No. But the three month accelerator program is intensive and includes weekly face-to-face programming. Founders and senior company leadership must fully commit to the accelerator program to be eligible for investment. Our offices include open work space and RevUp companies that relocate from outside New England can work from our space for the duration of the program, free of charge. 

    Does RevUp take equity?
    No. With RevUp, we’ve  transformed our investment approach, replacing equity investment with a revenue royalty contract.

    How is the royalty revenue contract structured?
    The cash component of the investment is invested as a low-interest rate, unsecured loan. We do this to minimize the tax implications for the company. RevUp’s revenue royalty contract aligns our investment return to the company’s revenue growth. A small percentage of monthly revenue (4-8%) is returned over the 36 months post-accelerator. 

    Why the 36 month timeframe for the revenue royalty?
    Because our investment is time-bound, the RevUp team is highly motivated to help our startups grow fast. 

    When does the next accelerator program start and end?
    For RevUp’s first cohort, we are accepting 6-8 companies on a rolling basis between now June 2015 and January 2015. The companies in our first cohort will interact with each other, with Betaspring alumni, with RevUp mentors and with the Betaspring leadership team--sometimes as a group and sometimes solo. For each company we accelerate, programming and investment begins on the day that we begin working with you. It ends three months later when we celebrate your mind blowing accomplishments. 

    How do I apply?
    Visit revup.betaspring.com to apply.