Minerva is a technology-based business accelerator backed by the Andalusian Regional Government and Vodafone that works to promote ICT entrepreneurship and to help companies consolidate their business in Andalusia. Its program involves projects, startups, and companies from all sectors, provided that the fundamental basis of their business model is technology. Furthermore, as a public-private partnership, it is a free initiative for the entrepreneur and does not enter into the capital of accelerated companies.
Every year, the Minerva Program launches a new edition to promote business projects. In each call, it selects a maximum of 30 projects from all the applications submitted. The selected participants begin a complete program of entrepreneurship, acceleration, and growth with the aim of developing and/or consolidating their technological business for a maximum of one year.
The acceleration program is based on 4 different work blocks which, together, bring together all the essential business aspects for any technology business and which will be developed under the guidance of the Minerva Team: business development, where the project must validate its business model through the Lean Startup methodology; communication and marketing, to improve its corporate image and digital traction; sales, where they will improve their commercial skills and strategies; and legal, where they will learn to understand the basic legal documentation and will receive advice to guide them through legal processes.
The Minerva Program stands out for having a team that accompanies the project in all phases of the acceleration, for the specialized mentoring in business development, its communication office for startups that provides media visibility, its training and personalized advice in the commercial area, for the quality of its high-level training program to promote business skills in business, communication, and sales and for its legal accompaniment. In addition, one of the program’s characteristics is that it has cash prizes for the projects that achieve the best traction and performance during acceleration. A “Minerva Check”, a resource exchange that is highly valued by entrepreneurs and helps them to continue growing.
Minerva also has a post-acceleration support called the Minerva Forum, a community that will continue to support entrepreneurs by offering them media coverage and activities to facilitate networking and investor searches.
Since 2012, the Minerva Program has been accompanying technological business projects at different stages of maturity in the development of their business. More than 150 business initiatives have passed through Minerva with a business success rate of 80%. In other words, eight out of ten companies with the Minerva seal manage to sell the products or services they develop during the acceleration.
With more than 3600 hours of advice and training dedicated in each edition to the selected business projects, FUNCAS places the Minerva Program as the first Andalusian accelerator in the ranking of acceleration programs, and it is in the top 5 nationally.