UB Cultivator Early-Stage Startup Program

Your startup might change the world—but not if your product or service isn’t sellable. We’ll give you early help to validate its market potential.

Get a good start on your startup with the UB Cultivator, a cohort-based program that guides entrepreneurs to success through mentorship, tailored support and early-stage funding.

How it works

We work with your team in an intensive, hybrid format—virtual and in person—giving you the right guidance and funding at the right time. 

Phase 1: Connect with experts, focus on early risk identification
First 3 months – can be virtual or in-person

Your team will participate with a cohort of like-minded entrepreneurs and learn from experts and mentors, who will give you strategic, hands-on guidance suited to your early-stage venture. We’ll work with your team to identify and rectify risks in the areas of:

  • Market and customer discovery
  • Value proposition
  • Product definition
  • Team development
  • Business strategy

At the end of Phase 1, all teams are evaluated and provided with feedback. Select groups receive funding and move on to Phase 2.

Phase 2: Startup funding and strategy development
Next 6 months – can be virtual or in-person

Selected teams from Phase 1 receive an investment up to $100,000 and move on to Phase 2, where we’ll help you with:

  • Critical gap funding for product/market validation
  • Investor connections
  • Free incubation space
  • Networking and customer connections
  • Minimum Viable Product development
  • Strategic guidance and business strategy

Why participate in the UB Cultivator?

We help you build a customized path to success through:

  • Mentorship
  • Early-stage funding
  • Cohort of innovative entrepreneurs
  • Networking and connections
  • Early risk identification
  • Market discovery
  • Customer discovery
  • Strategic guidance and business strategy from experienced entrepreneurs
  • A deep bench of mentors, entrepreneurs-in-residence, and subject-matter experts
  • Fundraising preparation
  • Investor connections
  • Customer connections
  • Preparation and execution for revenue generation

Who should participate?

We help early stage startups that:

  • Will likely achieve medium to high growth 
  • Will create a presence in Western New York for Phase 2
  • Will form a connection to UB or Innovation Hub Partners — Hauptman Woodward, Jacobs Institute, Kaleida Health, Roswell Park

If you have questions about the program or your participation, please inquire.

Space is limited. First come, first served.
Don't delay - applications close November 15th 2021.