US Ignite Startup Accelerator Program

Congratulations to all of the finalists in the Spring/Summer 2019 US Ignite/AWS Startup Accelerator pitch competition!

Deadline for submission has currently passed.
Watch the US Ignite website for announcements of future cohorts.

With generous support from Amazon Web Services, US Ignite is pleased to offer an opportunity for smart city startups to launch or accelerate their cloud-based service or business. Program participants will be part of online sessions weekly for eight weeks, present to business leaders for feedback, and develop a solid vision for operations using cloud services across eight weekly online sessions. The Smart City Startup Accelerator program will culminate with a final training event at the Amazon offices in Washington, DC.

Teams selected for this opportunity will receive the following:

  • An eight-week online Kaffuman FastTrac program with certified instructor Randall Olson.
  • Up to $10,000 in AWS credits for your startup.
  • Opportunity to connect with AWS Mentors.
  • Opportunity to present at the final event at AWS HQ in Washington DC in September 2019, where selected teams will receive additional prizes.


The US Ignite Startup Accelerator program is an enhancement to existing accelerators in our network of Smart Communities. It combines training developed by the Kauffman Foundation through its FastTrac program, with individual coaching from the course leader, a certified FastTrac affiliate, business leaders, and opportunities for mentoring on service deployment strategies from professionals from the Amazon Web Services team.

Target Dates:

  • April 2019 – Applications open to SGC members
  • May 2019 – Applications open to the public
  • May 31st, 2019 – Application deadline
  • Mid-June 2019 – Announcement of the selected cohort
  • July 10th – September 4th, 2019 – Training & mentoring
  • Early September 2019 – Recognition of completion at Amazon HQ in Washington, DC

About Kauffman FastTrac Training

The Kauffman FastTrac TechVenture course is a proven entrepreneur training course designed to help technology/science-based entrepreneurs grow their businesses with the support, connections and knowledge to be successful. In the course, we will be discussing current trends in market analysis and business planning. You will also learn effective strategies to access financing sources and strategic partners. Goals will include improving your elevator pitch, investor presentation and business plan. The FastTrac® courses have trained over 400,000 people in 18 countries. Fifty-nine percent of participants go on to start or expand their businesses, employing, on average, four full time and two part-time positions.

The training is an eight-week online course with a certified instructor, working with other members of the training cohort and with a rotating cadre of experts from the business and Venture Capital world.

Training modules focus on:

  • Exploring Entrepreneurship
  • Defining the Target Market
  • Conducting Market Research and Analysis
  • Testing Your Business Concept
  • Entering and Capturing the Market
  • Planning for Financial Success
  • Building and Compensating Your Organizational Team
  • Protecting the Business and Your Intellectual Property
  • Identifying Funding and Working with Investors
  • Managing Cash and Operating your Business

Applying for the Program

Ideal applicants for the program are early-stage startups with a demonstrable product, ready to accelerate their business and preparing to seek funding. Products should significantly leverage cloud infrastructure with a smart city focus on one of the following areas:

  • AI/ML to enhance or streamline city services
  • AR/VR for workforce development, first responders, and smart manufacturing
  • Autonomous vehicles
  • Cybersecurity for IoT and smart city infrastructure
  • Public safety sensors and analytics
  • Next-gen IoT sensors for energy, other utilities
  • Real-time data analysis and visualization tools tailored for city and industry leaders

Apply Online by Friday, May 31st.

Individuals will be notified of the results of the application review in mid-June and the online training will start July 10th.

For More Information
Contact Scott Turnbull, Director of Technology, US Ignite ([email protected])

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