MEMPHIS, Tenn.--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Applications are now open for the 2017 EPIcenter Logistics Innovation Accelerator. Sponsored by FedEx and now in its third year, the entrepreneurship accelerator program helps startups bring innovative logistics products and technologies to market.
“The opportunity for accelerator participants to learn across industries and tap into such a high level of logistics expertise is unparalleled here.”
The accelerator is an intensive 15-week program for innovative startups investigating transportation- or logistics-oriented solutions within areas including:
- First-Mile/Last-Mile Delivery
- Data-Driven Supply Chain Management and Big Data Analytics
- Internet of Things (IoT)
- Smart Packaging
- Location- and Contextual-Based Services
- Additive Manufacturing
The program is strategically located in Memphis, Tennessee – America’s distribution hub – home to the busiest cargo airport in the United States and in close proximity to five Class 1 railroads, the mighty Mississippi River, FedEx World Headquarters, and the I-40/I-55 corridors – making it the ideal place to launch new logistics innovations. Teams also have direct access to a network of logistics expertise in Memphis, including mentorship by FedEx staff members.
The accelerator is operated by EPIcenter, a collaborative and community-wide strategic initiative that connects the Memphis region’s entrepreneurship ecosystem and coordinates resources from accelerators, incubators, mentors, investors, networking programs, and technical assistance programs for entrepreneurs. Participating businesses have the added advantage of being immersed in a collaborative Summer of Acceleration experience in Memphis among seven other business accelerators. During the Summer of Acceleration experience, Start Co., a member of the Global Accelerator Network that has led accelerator programs for more than 80 startup companies, provides core accelerator programming, while EPIcenter provides logistics-specific programming.
“If an entrepreneur has an idea for a new logistics technology, there’s no better place to build a business around that idea than Memphis,” said Leslie Lynn Smith, president of EPIcenter. “The opportunity for accelerator participants to learn across industries and tap into such a high level of logistics expertise is unparalleled here.”
Through a competitive application process, up to six companies will be selected for the 2017 cohort and each will receive $50,000 in initial seed capital, including an investment from Innova, one of the country’s most active micro-venture funds that has invested in more than 75 early-stage companies and co-founded the nationally ranked ZeroTo510 Medical Device Accelerator with Memphis Bioworks.
The deadline for submitting applications is March 1, with a targeted cohort start date of May 1, and the accelerator concludes with a public Demo Day on August 10, 2017. Post-acceleration programs will be available thereafter to help the entrepreneurs continue to develop and grow their businesses.
“FedEx is committed to innovation, and sponsorship of the EPIcenter Logistics Innovation Accelerator program ensures small businesses that have innovative and emerging technologies have access to the resources they need to grow,” said Russ Fleming, Vice President Strategy, Innovation and Product Development, FedEx Services.
More information on applying to the EPIcenter Logistics Innovation Accelerator program is available at http://www.epimemphis.com/logistics-accelerator/.