The Accelerator Map

With thousands of incubators, accelerators, and support programs out there, it can be hard to identify if they are a right fit for your startup. The Accelerator Map helps you to evaluate different accelerator programs according to strategic fit and value output.

3 Outcomes
from Using
The Accelerator Map

Accelerators, accelerators everywhere

If you are a startup CEO, you already know that there are 1000’s of accelerators and startup programs around the world. At Strategy Tools we deeply believe in the power of Accelerators and what they can bring in. But how do you know which to focus on?


Pick the right ones for you

Different accelerators bring different things. Hatch is the premier seafood aquaculture accelerator, with locations in Hawaii, Bergen and Cork. Hax is a leading hardware accelerator, based in Shenzhen, EF is a venture builder, started in London, now growing globally, while Powerhouse only hosts programs in Oakland. Which one would matter more?

Use Strategic Fit & Value Output

Working with startups and scale-ups, we recommend using Strategic Fit (relevant theme, location, access to market, the quality of the brand, the power of their network) to assess the Strategic Fit to your startup. Use Value Output (the expected financial gain vs. financial cost) to assess the financial gain you reasonably can expect.



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Really helped us make sense of the accelerator landscape.

Startup Founder


Use Case: Norwegian Tech Startup

A Norwegian tech startup was exploring various growth strategies. As a part of their growth strategy, they were looking into a broad range of startup accelerators. Most were very local and offered little financial upside. Their early list of potential accelerators included Oslo, Munich, London, Boston, New York, California, Dubai, Beijing and Kuala Lumpur. Using the Accelerator Map, they identified what truly mattered to them, analyzed the different programs and found the ideal accelerator program for them.

How to Use it

Understand the Four Categories

Waste (of time) – Poor strategic fit, poor (or even negative) value output.
Most likely, you are asked to pay to join a program that has little value to you.

Dead Capital – Poor strategic fit, high potential value output. Sure, there is funding and cap raise involved, but how much will you actually stand to gain from the program?

Great Learning – Strong strategic fit, low value output. Probably a relevant theme, maybe hosted by a corporate or non-profit incubator (we don’t take equity), these learning experiences are just that, but don’t really mistake them for a fully developed accelerator.

Company Builder – Strong strategic fit, strong value output. An accelerator that brings both a solid strategic rationale, as well as a rewarding financial upside.


Pick the Right Place for You

With 1000’s of startup accelerators, there are plenty to choose from. Use the Accelerator Map to map out the top accelerators you have on the radar. Make sure you have a deep understanding of degree of match on both axes. Do you your research. Build a short-list. Zoom in on the handful that might really matter to you and make a strong impact in your scale up strategy.


Print, Present, Share

You can easily print the Accelerator Map in any size. Equally easy, put it in a PowerPoint presentation for easy use and presentation. Share it with your team, board, key stakeholders and an investors. Finally, make sure you select an accelerator that is just right for you.



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