Space-Focused Accelerator Program Announced by Techstars and Starburst

Techstars and Starburst have announced their joint effort to help entrepreneurs succeed in aerospace — the Techstars Starburst Space Accelerator, a new Los Angeles-based program, will focus on the next generation of space technology companies and related frontier technologies.

Matt Kozlov will be the MD of the program — he previously led the Cedars Sinai Accelerator Powered by Techstars in Los Angeles and has invested in more than 30 companies. Van Espahbodi, Co-Founder and MD of Starburst, will be advising Kozlov and the broader program, applying his experience of accelerating over 300 aerospace startups.

Building on Techstars success running more than 150 accelerator programs around the world with both government entities and Fortune 500 corporations, coupled with Starburst aerospace industry experience and expertise, this new mentorship-driven accelerator has formal sponsorship from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Lockheed Martin, Maxar Technologies, SAIC, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), and the U.S. Air Force, with support from The Aerospace Corporation.

With recent technological breakthroughs such as reusable rockets, 3D printing, advanced materials, and miniaturization of satellites (“smallsats”), as well as the introduction and adoption of new business models, the opportunities for entrepreneurs and corporations are unprecedented. New business models will be a focus for the accelerator, and the consortium will be looking to work with startups that have a use case for new space and related technologies in fields such as energy, communications, robotics, and autonomy. Breakthroughs in these industries contribute to why Bank of America Merrill Lynch recently estimated the space economy will be worth more than $3 trillion by 2045.

Applications for Techstars Starburst Space Accelerator are now open. The program, Techstars third accelerator program in California, will kick off in July. Startup companies in commercial space or that are developing related technologies are encouraged to apply. Startup companies looking to connect with program staff prior to applying or to get feedback on their companies are welcome to request Office Hours with Techstars staff.

Executive Comments

Mr. Kozlov said that the space industry is massively exciting, but also quite complex. The company is bringing together vital industry leaders, public and private, who will help entrepreneurs navigate the industry and provide unprecedented commercial support and mentorship. The firm will help founders achieve two years of commercial traction in three months. Given the pedigree of the committed sponsors, this program will quickly become a vital resource for entrepreneurs building frontier tech.

Mr. Espahbodi added that the list of incredible companies continues to grow. The broader aerospace industry has finally embraced the notion of ‘open innovation’ by partnering with entrepreneurs to co-develop products, with a compelling business plan to match. Starburst is excited to advise the program to ensure early-stage businesses have the appropriate tools to compete in this emerging marketplace.

About Starburst

Starburst is an innovation catalyst in the Aerospace industry. It is the first global Aerospace Accelerator, matching corporates with startups while providing strategic growth consulting for startups and corporations alike. With offices in Los Angeles, Paris, Montreal, Munich, San Francisco and Singapore, the team has built an ecosystem of key players across the Aerospace industry including over 4000+ related startups. Every year Starburst hosts numerous international and national events bringing together Aerospace innovators and puts innovation in the spotlight at international air shows.


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