Betaspring attracting applicants from around globe
FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Pablo Fernandez, a native of Argentina and co-founder of SkillHound, awaits his turn to pitch his company at a Betaspring event for its newest class of startup companies and business hopefuls.
Winter storm Nemo made for a less-than-ideal welcome for some member’s of Betaspring’s latest cohort, which, for the first time, includes three teams from India.
The Indian teams arrived in the midst of Nemo, in some cases lacking winter gear, to spend their first 20 hours in New England trudging through the snow and finding their hotel rooms to be without power.
But despite an inclement beginning to the startup accelerator’s sixth session, Betaspring’s three Indian participants, LocusPlay, Recroup and Stem2O are now settled in and more than halfway through the program. They were selected from a pool of approximately 300 applicants, about 15 to 20 percent of which were also from abroad, said Melissa Withers, Betaspring’s chief of staff and “nerd whisperer.”
Since the beginning, Withers said, Betaspring has sought strong teams with proven experience that were at the right stage in the start-up process.
“Geography really isn’t a consideration with us,” she said.
While Betaspring is not doing anything new to attract foreign applicants, they are becoming increasingly common. In recent years, applicants have had roots as close by as Canada and as far off as China, Russia, Italy and Kazakhstan.
During Betaspring’s initial session, most applicants were not only domestic, but local, Withers said.
A few foreign teams have been involved in recent years, including from Canada and Israel.
In addition to the three Indian teams, this session’s cohort also includes companies that were founded in the U.S., but have individual leadership from participants originally from England, Argentina and India.
But Withers doesn’t see this session’s increased foreign participation as a trend.