Gener8tor is a Midwestern concierge startup accelerator, with a presence in the Uptown Minneapolis WeWork location. Their mission is to provide guidance, support, and opportunities for high-growth companies who are ready to take their business to a whole new level. Each cohort goes through a 12-week, hands-on program, and receives $100,000 of initial funding.
Next Wednesday night, their latest cohort will be sharing the progress they’ve made over the last three months at the Gener8tor “Premiere Night.” Each of the companies will have five minutes to give their pitch to a room of investors, entrepreneurs, and community members. This type of event is a way for these newer companies to expand their networks, spread the good news of their hard work, and if all goes well, increase their funding to keep going strong.
Tech.MN had the opportunity recently to talk with one of the companies in this latest cohort, Qlicket. Launched just 18 months ago, Qlicket provides a data collection and employee feedback software as a service (SaaS) to high-turnover industries such as distribution and fulfillment, healthcare, and supply-chain/logistics operations. Their model provides hardware, software, and custom content kiosks that engage with workers to determine trends in employee satisfaction. These kiosks also show the company’s empathy towards their workers’ issues, and help to find solutions to those issues which typically cause high turnover for employers. Companies can track their custom data, which is also then combined with aggregated data from comparables in the industry for help identifying solutions. Content on the kiosks is refreshed often, with input from both the employers and their Qlicket team, and all data collected from employees is voluntary and anonymized, equating to increased employee involvement with the on-site kiosks. Qlicket currently operates within about a dozen host sites, and with an upcoming expansion into a Fortune 500 company, will be operating within three dozen sites by the end of 2020.
Vivek Kumar, one of Qlicket’s Gener8tor cohort participants, said that the experience within the cohort has been incredibly helpful. “The ratio of advisors to companies was pretty perfect. They were great about talking through any difficulties we had, and helping to make investor intros.” From his perspective, the process of getting accepted was intense, but worth it. “With an acceptance rate of about 0.625%, you’re probably more likely to get accepted into an Ivy League school, but being a part of a group like this is a phenomenal experience. It was so helpful to be a part of a small group that we could ask questions and bounce ideas off of.”
The road to getting to this upcoming Premiere Night was not easy, but starting a business rarely is. The first time Qlicket applied for the Gener8tor cohort, they were declined. “We were told to keep building our company and then reapply.” So they kept chugging along, meeting goals, and finally, felt ready to reapply. This time, they were accepted. Kumar passed along some good advice for any other local startups thinking of applying for a program like this, “…show your consistent growth and traction. Execute on the things you say you can do, and the odds are good that you will succeed.”
For more information on this event, and the Gener8tor program on whole, please visit their website.