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Wildfire Frequently Asked Questions

What makes Wildfire different from other accelerators?

Wildfire is focused on getting you from vision to revenue much faster than elsewhere - 6 months or less. Why our focus on getting to paying customers? Raising capital is exceptionally difficult with out revenue if you can do it at all. If you do raise capital you'll give away a huge percentage of your company and often with many strings attached. We are entrepreneurs ourselves, this galls us. 

So to get you there quickly we focused on building the right tools to help you:

  • Clear Process - Defined process with milestones tasks that help you track your progress daily toward launch. We have an app called Wildfire Hub that delivers our process.
  • Wildfire Guide - Our unique knowledge base & video library helps guide you from vision > revenue with help articles, video guides, templates, and other tools to make each step actionable.
  • Wildfire University - As you launch you'll need key skills in sales/marketing, finance, leadership, fund raising, and other areas. We bring in experts to get you the fundamentals quickly.
  • Mentors - Specifically mentors with proven software startup experience.
  • We're entrepreneurs ourselves - We're not VC, finance, or economic development people. We're entrepreneurs focused on helping entrepreneurs.

 

What will I receive if I join the program?

All startups that are admitted into our program get the following benefits throughout the program:

  • Access to Wildfire Hub (+ access for 1 year following graduation).
  • 1:1 mentoring as you request and we are able to provide from Wildfire Partners and Mentors with deep experience in software.
  • Participation in Wildfire Sprint groups - bi-weekly events for founders to meet, discuss progress, and get input on next steps.
  • Access to exclusive Wildfire University in person/virtual sessions from industry leaders (+ recorded session access for 1 year following graduation).
  • 24/7 access to Wildfire co-working space in Rapid City, SD during the accelerator (+ 6 months following graduation).
  • 6 months free office space at the Elevate Rapid City DLAB following successful graduation.

Upon successfully reaching milestones in the Wildfire Labs program, startups in our program are eligible to receive:

  • Up to $25,000 in forgivable loan funding for building your MVP.
  • Up to $25,000 go-to-market test funding on a SAFE. 
  • Present at Demo Day to investors Wildfire Partners.

We do not guarantee funding when you are admitted to the program - funding is provided when you hit Wildfire program milestones on time, and at a quality level that warrants investment.

How long is the Wildfire Accelerator?

Our goal is to get you to revenue in 6 months. That includes everything from identifying your "beachhead" customers through to getting your first paying customer onboarded. Getting to revenue is key to raising capital in today's challenging environment, so we've tailored the program to give you the tools and process to get there quickly.

How do I get into Wildfire?

In order to be admitted into the program, you'll need to have the following:

  • A product concept that is well thought out.
  • An identified market you want to sell into and at least a few customers you've talked to.
  • At least one founder that can devote at least 20 hours per week to your idea.
  • Authority to execute our Advisor Agreement (what gives Wildfire our equity position in your startup)

There are a few misconceptions we often here. You DO NOT need:

  • Functioning prototype
  • Developers on staff
  • Funding already raised
  • A big ego
Do I have to pay to be in Wildfire?

No, you're just getting started! We've started are own businesses so the last thing we want to do is divert funds away from building your product and getting it to market.

Wildfire takes a flat 8% equity position in your company. We're betting that you build a business that will eventually compensate us for the program.

How do I apply?

You can fill out your application online by clicking Apply Now at the top of our site.

I have more questions. How can I reach you?

Click the chat icon at the bottom/right corner of our website. We'll get back to you as soon as we can!

Ready to light a fire?

If you have an idea that is ready to go big we’d love to hear about it!