At MuckerLab, our portfolio companies are our customers; therefore, customer satisfaction is key to long-term success as in any service business. As a result, our selection criteria are not solely based on whether we believe the company can generate a significant financial return in the long run.
Name of Accelerator: MuckerLab
Location: Santa Monica, California
This article is part of our Startup Accelerator Spotlight featuring accelerators from around the world. We hope these spotlights will assist the entrepreneur should they consider attending an accelerator.
In two sentences or less, tell us about your accelerator and its objectives?
We partner with exceptional entrepreneurs in the broader tech space who have deep domain expertise. MuckerLab provides the earliest institutional funding and works side-by-side to help launch and scale new ventures.
Why is your accelerator program unique? Please describe the benefits of participation in your program.
The biggest differentiator of MuckerLab is most importantly that we invest in a relatively small number of companies a year (about ten to twelve). Besides that, we spend a rather extensive amount of time working with those businesses (for a period of a year, or more). Our time spent with each company is milestone-based rather than time-bound. We’ll work with them from wherever they are until they have perfected their product and go to market and are in a position to raise their next round of funding. Essentially, our model as an accelerator is fundamentally different in that it is low-volume and high-touch.
What is the most difficult part of working with startups?
In the context of Mucker’s strategy, the level of involvement we choose to take can be particularly intensive given our operationally focused hands-on approach. For pre-seed stage investments, perfecting product-market fit can be particularly challenging as well.
What do you enjoy the most; what do you find most appealing about working with entrepreneurial startups?
We love helping entrepreneurs build businesses and products. Investing in seed-stage companies is particularly exciting for us since we invest when startups are in the earliest formative stages and are at their initial go-to market. Ultimately, we thrive from partnering with entrepreneurs to turn ideas into successful businesses.
Tell us about your success stories; which are the most interesting companies to have participated in your program?
Honey is a consumer company that automatically finds and applies coupon codes at checkout for you. Honey has raised $40 million in funding.
ServiceTitan is an online and mobile SaaS service management platform for home service businesses. It combines traditional service management (scheduling appointments, dispatching technicians, etc.) with modern CRM capabilities.
- The Black Tux
The Black Tux is an online tuxedo rental company based here in Santa Monica. It provides the best quality product on the rental market, with an exceptional fit, a seamless experience, and at a better price. The Black Tux has raised $60 million in funding.
What are the three most important factors startup entrepreneurs should consider when contemplating attending an accelerator?
- Do I have the adequate resources to develop my product on my own?
- Do I have access to an extensive network as an accelerator would?
- Do I have the “know-how” to scale my business for future success and funding?
- Do I have an adequate team to execute my idea?
- Do I have the right market opportunity/size?
What else would you like to share?
MuckerLab is not for every entrepreneur or company. Our portfolio companies are our customers; therefore, customer satisfaction is key to long-term success as in any service business. As a result, our selection criteria are not solely based on whether we believe the company can generate a significant financial return in the long run. Most importantly, we need to be convinced that we can add value significantly above and beyond our equity ownership in the company.
Are you familiar with accelerators you believe should be spotlighted? If so, we would like to hear from you. Tell us about them in the comments below.