There are a lot of new faces in the Techstars Atlanta office these days.
Tim DorrCEO of Techstars Atlanta Powered by Cox Enterprises, joined in February and immediately went to work recruiting startups for the accelerator. Anastasia Simon joined this May as chief investment officer after spending 15 years crisscrossing the startup ecosystem with roles in Retail saledigital media, edtech, music tech, and early-stage venture capital.
Now, 10 new founders will join the Ponce City Market-based accelerator program.
Techstars Atlanta Powered by Cox Enterprises will be fully in-person this year after several years of remote or hybrid programming.
While applications were open to startups from across the country, seven of the ten startups in this year’s cohort are already from Atlanta. Kim Mackenzie, Atlanta venture lead for Cox Enterprises, said “it didn’t happen by accident; when we launched the call for applications, Atlanta came forward and brought the best.”
The Class of 2022 also represents a huge milestone for the local Techstars community, as they have now reached 100 startups participating in Techstars Atlanta or Techstars Impact.
Meet the Startups of 2022
COOKONNECT – An Atlanta-based startup focused on increasing access to home meal preparation services.
“While most people prefer home-cooked meals, few have the time or desire to prepare meals every week. Cookonnect helps users eat well and comfortably at home by making the personal kitchen more accessible to both customers and cooks providing food services,” the team told Hypepotamus.
ILLOOMINUS – An Atlanta-based data analytics company in the DE&I space. When asked why the time was right to join such an accelerator, the team said: “We firmly believe that no startup builds itself. A community around you is needed. To launch a startup, build a team, develop a product, and attract customers, you’re moving incredibly fast. Techstars is that “slow down (but really fast)” opportunity to challenge your assumptions with world-class mentors and experts and get the right infrastructure so you can speed up again.”
MEDSEMBLY – An Atlanta-based software company that connects healthcare students with professionals and mentors.
“College students lack guidance in their career path, specifically in health care, where the stakes are high. We solve this problem by connecting pre-health students directly with experienced professionals to provide guidance, clarity and support as they transition into their professions,” the team told Hypepotamus.
METRIC MATE – An Atlanta-based startup helping people better track stats around their workouts.
When asked why the time was right to join Techstars, they said, “The market started to change. When we started promoting Metric Mate to the public, the need for data tracking and remote guidance for strength training was unclear. People interacted and met face to face on a regular basis. As the world began to change with the pandemic, the benefits of Metric Mate began to show and users became more receptive to our technology and willing to pay for it. TechStars is an obvious partner and the connection with Cox will provide insights that will be an integral part of our growth.”
MY PANDA – An Atlanta-based startup that connects people with on-demand personal assistants.
The team participated in the Atlanta Founder Catalyst program with JP Morgan last fall and said joining this new cohort is about preparing the team to scale.
“We have been operating and growing on a shoestring budget with a small team. Our client retention rate is excellent, our revenue has been growing, and we are ready to start scaling and growing our team. As a first-time, non-tech startup founder, the structure and support of a Techstars accelerator is exactly what we need right now.”
PALMLY – A two-sided marketplace based in Atlanta to connect people looking for new faith communities.
The team seeks to solve a unique problem. “In this post-pandemic era, churches are looking for innovative ways to grow their congregations, and an estimated 115 million adults in the US alone are looking for hope, faith, and a community to explore these things. Our solution takes a two-sided market approach where we curate a community for people exploring faith and connect them with a church that fits their unique needs.”
PAYVMNT- A last-mile delivery data platform that has moved to Atlanta.
“There is a huge gap between routing/delivery software and market demand. We’re building a solution to alleviate the pain points delivery drivers face on a daily basis, from real-time optimization to how they get paid. We are building the future of what was missing in last-mile logistics,” the team told Hypepotamus.
REVELER – A New York-based software startup focused on the fan experience.
Techstars Atlanta is a bit like a homecoming or the team, made up of Savannah natives and graduates of Georgia Tech and South Georgia. “To connect businesses and local communities, we envision Reveler as the framework that drives technology as an enhancement of human connection within the sports space. We know that to achieve this, it would require support, capital, and a network outside of our current means,” the team added.
THEIA DATING – A matchmaking service designed to create “meaningful connections within communities.”
The concept started as Dating Deacons at Wake Forest University. “In a dating industry riddled with shallow profiles, endless swipes, and no real connection, Theia offers a unique and popular approach,” the team told Hypepotamus.
VARKN – A mobile app for independent valet drivers that launched in late 2021.
The team described the app as a way to eliminate the challenges associated with off-airport parking.
“I am new to the business environment of technology and the decisions made at the early stage of a startup can set the tone for how fast it will grow in the years to come. When I applied, the startup was at a stage where proper mentoring and funding was required to move to the next stage. Applying to Techstars Atlanta is the best option I have taken to ensure the proper launch of the startup,” said the team.
What to expect from Techstars Atlanta 2022
Rounding out the Techstars team is Hannah Turnerthe returning investment associate for her fifth cohort of the program.
The startups on the team will be working with Dorr, Simon, Turner and a group of local mentors for the next several months. The program will culminate on October 17 with its Demo Day.
Simon told Hypepotamus that she is ready to bring her unique startup and investment experience to the local Techstars ecosystem.
“The only constant [in my career] It has been being one of the first employees who was able to work side by side with the founders of the company,” she said. “I have also been a perpetual side hustle queen supporting small business owners since I graduated from LSU in 2007. What I learned is that it’s not about being the smartest or most innovative founder, it’s about being persistent, passionate, humble, and intellectually curious about the world around you. Entrepreneurship isn’t easy, whether you’re running a boutique or developing a SaaS platform to make buildings more energy efficient. If you can’t ride the ups and downs, ask for and accept help, and pivot when you need it, it doesn’t matter how good you are at writing code.”
While most of the startups are already based in Atlanta, she also sees the support of Cox Enterprise as key to helping these founders gain national traction.
“With our program partnering with Cox Enterprises, an industry leader that is deeply committed to continuing to grow Atlanta’s startup ecosystem, how could I not see this as the perfect opportunity to create tangible change locally and globally? , because we all know Atlanta influences everything,” added Simon.