No Boys Allowed: Women Innovate Mobile Accelerator For Women

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By Sarah Perez (Writer, TechCrunch)

Today, a new startup accelerator for women, the Women Innovate Mobile (WIM) Accelerator, is opening its doors for applications. The program will start off small, offering two to five companies seed funding of $18,000, plus mentoring, support, and free office space in New York during the course of its three-month program.

The company was founded by Veronika Sonsev, the co-founder of inSparq and the non-profit Women in Wireless, Deborah Jackson, founder of JumpThru, and business strategist Kelly Hoey.

“Accelerators are dominated by men and Women Innovate Mobile is the first dedicated to cultivating female founders,” said Kelly Hoey, WIM’s Managing Director. “No one disputes the talent and capabilities of female entrepreneurs, yet they remain severely underrepresented among mentor-driven accelerator programs. That’s why we developed an accelerator program just for women-led mobile ventures.”

The program will follow the usual accelerator path of offering guidance and assistance over a few months’ time, culminating in a Demo Day in front of investors.

WIM has already attracted a notable group of mentors and instructors, including Gilt Groupe’s Alexandra Wilkis Wilson, Klout’s co-founder Binh Tran and Starvest’s Jeanne Sullivan, plus experts from AppNexus, Forbes, Formula Capital, Bank of America, Sequoia Lab, GoldenSeeds, Tapjoy and Women 2.0.

Applications are open now and will close on February 1st. The program is scheduled to launch in March 2012. Interested participants can sign up here.

Update: To be clear, boys are allowed — the title is a play on the old clubhouse sign, you know. Live a little, folks. WIM criteria:

(1) must be a technology company
(2) must have a woman co-founder
(3) must have a mobile application (i.e. mobile payment, mobile advertising, mobile applications)

This post was originally posted at TechCrunch.