LaunchPad2X, an Atlanta-based women entrepreneurship program, today announced a call for applicants for its 2015 mentor and leadership program. The organization is seeking women founders and CEOs who are interested in accelerating the growth of their business, to participate in the month long program that offers unparalleled mentoring and entrepreneurial lessons designed to foster growth, accelerating revenue and job creation. Classes are taught by public and private company executives, investors, academia, and professional service firms. Participants have the opportunity to interact and network with venture capitalists, angel investors, successful entrepreneurs and local business leaders. The application deadline is August 31, 2015.
Annually, the program selects no more than 20 companies to participate. To date, 52 companies have graduated from three cohorts. “LaunchPad2X brings a unique set of successful companies from all industries the opportunity to learn and develop skills, to grow and become deeply connected with the ecosystem of Atlanta,” said Darrell Green, Senior Vice President, Director Small Business Banking Strategy, Southeast Region, Wells Fargo.
LaunchPad2X is intentionally designed exclusively for women-led businesses. According to a report by the Kauffman Foundation, which researches and advocates for entrepreneurship, women entrepreneurs could boost the economy in a way that hasn’t been seen since women entered the workforce in mass numbers in the 20th century. However, while women are outpacing men in launching companies, overall women-led and women-owned businesses remain smaller and trail in growth.
“LaunchPad2X wasn’t started because women need extra help being successful,” says Bernie Dixon, Chairman and President of the Atlanta Technology Angels, the foundational partner for LaunchPad2X program. “It is precisely the opposite. New information is emerging suggesting that women entrepreneurs may be more competent than their male counterparts, outpacing them in growth and valuations. Yet these same success oriented women entrepreneurs are privy to less than ten percent of the capital available in the markets today to fuel their growth. We want to move the needle for successful women CEOs and help them tap into the resources to boost their success.”
The program targets women running an early stage business who are ready to take their business to the next level and equips them with skills to grow rapidly from founder to Chief Executive Officer. Selected participants will be paired with experienced advisors to help guide them through leadership lessons and the process of getting “investor-ready.” The month long program includes three sessions that will cover a range of developmental courses addressing business strategy, tactics with investors and adopting a CEO-leadership style. The program concludes with an individual coaching and advisory session designed to provide one-on-one guidance and address company-specific issues. Following graduation, alumni may join the LP2X Masters Program where they continue to develop leadership skills and expand their business knowledge.
“LaunchPad2X has done what no other institution or business has done,” said Anna Ruth Williams, Founder and CEO of ARPR and graduate of LaunchPad2X 2013. “LaunchPad2X offers development of the necessary skills for running a growth oriented emerging company, and has created a curriculum that transitions company founders into powerful CEO’s.”
LaunchPad2X is also looking for sponsors for this year’s program from organizations interested in partnering to support women entrepreneurs. A panel of supporters and local business leaders will contribute to the program and review applications for acceptance. Supporters include KPMG, Startup Atlanta, The Cooks Warehouse, Frazier & Deeter, Morris Manning & Martin, Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, LLP, Siavage Law Group, Tech CXO, Trevelino/Keller, The Georgia Business Success Center and other key businesses throughout the Southeast. Additionally, Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is the Enterprise-level banking sponsor for LauchPad2X.
Past graduates of LaunchPad2X include companies that are beating the odds for startups; 94 percent of them are still in business, and all experienced a high growth after the program – 300 percent revenue growth per year on average. The overwhelming majority of the companies have signed on huge customers such as GE, Walmart, Toys “R” Us, Apple, Aaron’s, and The City of Atlanta. “It’s inspiring to see how these companies have grown,” continues Dixon. “LaunchPad2X allows for the development of women’s confidence and knowledge to grow their companies even more rapidly and emphasizes applying the right resources and leadership at the right times in the company lifecycle.” The program also ensures that advisors and sponsors are available to provide ongoing assistance and serve the companies after graduation as needed.
Chosen applicants will attend LaunchPad2X sessions at various Atlanta business locations, providing participants an opportunity to interact and network with the local business community. Sessions will take place on Sept. 25, Oct. 2 and Oct. 16, 2015. Space is limited for this competitive program so interested entrepreneurs are encouraged to apply soon. To apply, download the application from angelatlanta.com/education/launchpad2x.
For questions, more information, or details about corporate sponsorship please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Launchpad2X is designed to foster the success of female entrepreneurs. The 2015 program, run in collaboration with Atlanta Technology Angels, is designed for women founders and leaders who want to take their business to the next level. Investors, venture capitalists, professional service firms, members of the Atlanta business community, and others will interact with participants during the program and receptions. Participants will have the opportunity to present to an advisory panel and receive individual coaching at the conclusion of the program, further increasing the potential for funding and growing their companies. For more information visit: http://angelatlanta.com/education/launchpad2x/.
About Atlanta Technology Angels
Atlanta Technology Angels (ATA) is one of the nation’s top angel investing networks, comprised of 125 members, VC affiliates and sponsors in Georgia. ATA is a member-led investment network that sources, performs due diligence, invests and provides post deal stewardship for early stage technology companies in Georgia and the Southeast. Providing more than just money, ATA provides education, coaching, mentoring, connections, leadership and support to early-stage entrepreneurs with viable ideas and technology. ATA ranks in the top 4 networks in the United States in portfolio size, members and opportunity flow, and invests in technology-based companies with large market potential. To learn more, please visit www.angelatlanta.com.
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