Jun 23, 2022
Accelerator review: Newchip - an equity-free option for startup founders

Accelerator review: Newchip - an equity-free option for startup founders

Kathleen O'Donnell
Kathleen O'Donnell
Freelance Writer
Kathleen O'Donnell
Kathleen O'Donnell
Freelance Writer

Are you a Pre-Seed - Series A stage founder looking for an equity-free accelerator program? After positive experiences from a few Propel members, we can say that Newchip may be what you're looking for. In this review find out where the program is based, what it will cost you and a few other things to consider.

It seems like every week a new startup accelerator comes online to help founders bring their dreams to life. But how can you determine which one is right for your unique needs and business? 

The number of available options can make your head spin - but it also means there are choices out there that can fit your needs better than the more traditional accelerators. 

The Newchip Accelerator program is one of those options, with an equity-free and online-only model that can provide a path for many founders looking for something a little different. Let’s review!

What is Newchip?

Newchip Accelerator is a startup accelerator focused on founders who want to raise funding for their businesses. Like all startup accelerators, it has four main components: it’s a fixed-term, cohort-based, mentorship-focused program that culminates with a demo day. 

Unlike many other accelerators, however, it’s intended to be a sort of version of the executive MBA for startup founders. If you apply and are accepted, you’ll work around your current 9-5 job with self-paced assignments for six months. And it has a few other differences we’ll cover below as well. 

Their Crunchbase listing has a great breakdown of program details. 

Newchip Accelerator location 

Newchip’s program takes place completely online, which opens the door to founders from across the globe. They focus on startups that want to get into the US market, and help them raise funding and make connections in their home country and across the international community as well. 

Newchip Accelerator cost

Unlike many other popular accelerators, Newchip has an equity-free pricing model. For founders who want to retain greater control of their creation, this can be an attractive offer. You can focus on funding your startup while growing without giving away a piece of what you’ve worked hard to build. 

Their cost is either on a straight tuition basis, or they can include a warrant option for investing after the program is finished. If you don’t receive an investment offer for a year after the program finishes, your warrant is void. 

The tuition cost varies depending on the program you join: 

  • The pre-seed program, for companies raising or scaling up to $1 million, is estimated to be about $2,000 to $3,000. 
  • The series seed program, for companies raising up to $5 million or scaling up to $3 million, is estimated to be about $7,000. 
  • The series A program, for companies raising or scaling up to $10 million, is estimated to be about $10,000-$12,000. 

There are a few scholarships available for the top candidates in each cohort, and payment plans are available as well. While the cost might be steep for founders, especially in the very early stages, the tradeoff is more control over your future rounds of funding because you won’t have given up that equity early on. 

What you should consider 

The Newchip program is not for founders who are looking to create their MVP - it’s really focused on getting you funding fast. You’re not guaranteed an investment from Newchip at the end of that period, as they tend to invest only in the top cohort participants. 

You’ll get the most out of it if you’re self-motivated and organized since the program is online and self-paced, and the cohort sizes are a bit larger than other accelerators. But if you’re determined, focused, and looking to raise funds while retaining control (and without having to move to another city or country), Newchip could be a good fit for you. 

Our breakdown of startup accelerators is a good read as well, with feedback from a previous participant in Newchip’s program. 

Have you completed the Newchip accelerator? How are you finding it? Loved (or hated) an aspect of the program that we didn’t cover?
Get in touch and share your experience.

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