WorldPay, in Atlanta, recently pledged $1 million to fund a financial technologies accelerator at Georgia Tech’s ATDC. It’s great to see a local company make a substantial investment in the community and it got me thinking about other ways $1 million could be put to work. Here are a few ideas:
- Generic Startup Accelerator – Much like the financial technologies accelerator but for any type of tech startup. With $1 million, there’s enough funding for two 10-team cohorts that receive $25,000 each along with office space, legal, accounting, and a managing director to run it for one year.
- Tech Entrepreneurship Center – $1 million is plenty of money to rent a nice office space for 4-5 years along with a great community manager to run the facility and coordinate programs (startups would still pay rent but the $1 million would go towards subsidizing everything).
- Partially Endow an Entrepreneurship Education Chair – $1 million could be put into the local community foundation to pay a non-profit, school, or college in the area to partially fund a dedicated entrepreneurship teacher that runs programs like the Kauffman Foundation FastTrac program as well as other classes geared towards high potential new businesses (see the Ideal Entrepreneur Bootcamp Program).
- 100 Programming Bootcamp Scholarships – $1 million would pay for 100 people to go through an intensive three month software engineering bootcamp program where they are trained to be a professional programmer (this is a way for people with college degrees to switch careers quickly). Take a look at Tech Talent South, Iron Yard, Digital Crafts, and General Assembly.
$1 million still goes far, especially outside the expensive coastal cities. and can fund a major startup community initiative. As tech innovation and entrepreneurship continues to be a hot area, look for more tech startup community initiatives.
What else? What are some other ways $1 million can be put to work in a startup community?