Catalyst Accelerator is a defense and national security accelerator and the first accelerator program to be held in Southern Colorado. Atypically, Catalyst Accelerator represents a collaborative effort between public and private organizations, including Space Capital Colorado, Catalyst Campus for Technology & Innovation, the Center for Technology, Research & Commercialization (C-TRAC) and the Small Business Development Center (SBDC). Catalyst Accelerator’s mission is to promote technology advancement for the warfighter and to guide technology transfer between the government and the commercial market.

Catalyst Accelerator uses SBDC-Boulder’s Economic Gardening curriculum. Unique among accelerator programs is the co-location in Colorado Springs with Air Force Space Command and a potential rapid funding mechanism, available through the government. By locating the accelerator on the Catalyst Campus in proximity to the customer, the customer discovery process – wherein the participants gather an operational perspective from Air Force personnel and decisionmakers and come to understand their needs – will be greatly reduced, from an average of two years in the typical government market to less than three months through the Catalyst Accelerator.

Inaugural Cohort

Catalyst Accelerator partnered with the Air Force Space Command’s Space and Missile Systems Center Advanced Systems & Development Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate. On January 30, 2018, Catalyst Accelerator launched its inaugural cohort of six small businesses, all hand-selected from dozens of innovative applicants by Space Capital Colorado. The intensive 12-week program tasked participating companies with developing solutions for providing better terrestrial weather data and other commercially viable, related products. Participating companies were provided direct access to operational weather experts and stakeholders from the United States Air Force and other government agencies, as well as the Catalyst Campus, SBDC, PTAC and SCORE national network of mentors, partners and investors.

A second cohort is planned for September 2018 with a focus on Positioning, Navigation and Timing technologies.

Space Capital Colorado
Space Capital Colorado is a Catalyst-endowed accelerator fund driving venture capital and angel investment into the Southern Colorado community. Space Capital Colorado’s first investment provided Catalyst Accelerator participants with immediate capital of $15,000. Space Capital Colorado may further invest in any of the cohort companies if they show potential.

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