Entrepreneurs Roundtable Joins Clan of NYC Tech Incubators, Graduates First Class of Startups

10/17/11Follow @arleneweintraub

When Entrepreneurs Roundtable started up in New York four years ago, its mission was to offer networking opportunities and monthly pitch events, where startup execs could describe their ideas to potential financiers. A couple of years later, the tech scene exploded in New York, and entrepreneurs were hungering for more, says Jonathan Axelrod, a serial entrepreneur and longtime advisor to the Roundtable. “We decided there was an opportunity to create the first business accelerator that would be managed by New Yorkers for the New York tech community,” Axelrod says. “It was about building New York as a center for young startups to grow.”

So Axelrod co-founded Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator along with fellow entrepreneur and computer scientist Murat Aktihanoglu and VC Charles Kemper. The incubator is based in the heart of Times Square—a couple of subway stops north of the epicenter of the city’s startup community. It recently graduated its first class of 10 startups and held its first demo day for venture capitalists. The program has started taking applications for the next class, which will begin in January.

Entrepreneurs Roundtable Accelerator is far from the only incubator in the Big Apple, though. Other contenders for entrepreneurial energy range from TechStars (which will hold its second New York demo day tomorrow) to Blueprint Health, a brand new incubator focusing on health IT startups. The Roundtable program is similar in some ways: It goes on for three months, it includes a seed fund that puts $25,000 into each new company accepted into the program, and it relies on a network of mentors to guide the entrepreneurs through the startup process.

But Axelrod contends there are a few key differences between his incubator and all the others. For example, the 10 companies that just graduated will be doing a second demo day at the accelerator 500 Startups in Mountain View, CA on November 1st. They’re getting there thanks to a … Next Page »

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