MassChallenge Named Top Accelerator for the 2016 Seed Rankings Project

Yael and her team at the Seed Rankings Project began their work 5 years ago with the goal of trying to create a conversation about the accelerator phenomenon and its effect -- between startups, investors, etc -- to better help entrepreneurs identify the creme of the crop, the accelerators that will actually help them get to where they want to go.

Here are the top Accelerators, according to the 2016 SARP:

These rankings are based on several factors:

  • Valuation of the startups 1, 2, and 3 years out from program
  • Fundraising 1, 2, and 3 years out from program
  • Number of Exits
  • Survival (lowest weighted in the index, since failing fast is actually a good thing)
  • Satisfaction – via a survey of 1,000 startups

SARP also made note of several new trends among accelerators:

  • Growth of Corporate Programs and other involvement
  • University Accelerators
  • Regional Impact
  • Multiplier with cohort networks
  • Mentorship

New Trends Map to MassChallenge’s Strengths

We’re incredibly excited to be named a top accelerator among other great programs. While some smaller accelerators (particularly ones that take loads of equity while providing little value) are fizzling out, established accelerators such as the ones listed are only getting better and better with differences getting smaller and smaller, which is why -- unlike previous years -- Hochberg decided to remove the numerical rankings and focus on bands based on the clustering of the top programs.  

We’re also pleased to see that MassChallenge is on the cutting edge of up and coming trends, with collaboration being a huge theme.  

For example, better engaging and including corporations in early stage activity is something that has benefited entrepreneurs around the world. There is also a growing crop of Corporate Accelerators. With over 100 corporate sponsors, MassChallenge has already been forging crucial partnerships with the likes of Autodesk’s Build Space, Honda’s Silicon Valley Lab, and Cisco Entrepreneurs in Residence.


Many of our alumni also hail from Boston’s robust university ecosystem. From the MIT $100k to the Harvard i-Lab, over a third of our applicants for our 2015 cohort were student run startups - university collaboration is key to any startup ecosystem.

It is through these collaborations and participation in MassChallenge, our alumni have raised $1.1B in funding since 2009, all while our program has dramatically scaled from Boston to the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Israel, and Mexico. We’re incredibly excited to see how these programs, and the others that we’ll launch by 2020, will impact regional ecosystems, especially considering that SARP suggests that, after an accelerator arrives in a region, VC funding had a 13X increase in funding over the following 3 years.


Couple this with the fact that -- according to the Moretti Multiplier Effect --  MassChallenge, through our commitment to expand to twelve new markets by 2020, will contribute to this with the jobs startups create which will have a 5x multiplier on jobs in the services sector. If MC startups create 30,000 new direct jobs by 2020, this will translate to 150,000 indirect jobs. 


The help of our tremendous, global network, along with our focus on continuing to diversify and expand our mentor pool, will lead to more jobs, bigger valuations, and increased fundraising. We are just getting started.