Start-Up Now application
Start-Up Now is a unique entrepreneurship training program in South Florida that helps people bring their ideas to life. This program partners with Broward County's premiere incubator to bring you a rigorous and rewarding program that will challenge you. It will also provide you with the advice and mentoring of experienced entrepreneurs, investors and C-level professionals.
If you believe now is a good time to launch your innovative idea, we're here to help you along. No need to let time pass and ask yourself - maybe 30 years from now - "I wonder what would have happened if I had pursued my idea back then?".
How Start-Up Now Works
We offer a four-stage program that will challenge you to test your idea and launch it if you have product-market fit.
Here you learn key concepts about entrepreneurship, marketing and finance that you'll want to know to give you a comfort level when speaking to investors and others.
This premier methodology developed by entrepreneur Steve Blank is taught within a framework of accountability and support. Not sure you can do it on your own? We can help you get there. By the end of this phase, you will know if you have product-market fit or not. If you do, you move on and if you don’t, no worries. You just saved yourself lots of blood, sweat, tears and money. And, you learned a methodology that you can use with your next idea.
The pace doesn't slow down as you write your business plan and develop your pitch. Entrepreneur, investor and best-selling author Michael O'Donnell teaches you how to write a rock-solid business plan and an effective pitch. Both of these will be judged separately by entrepreneurs and investors, and you'll get to read the feedback yourself. You also benefit from mentors who provide feedback every step of the way.
The final stage is where you begin your journey by holding yourself accountable to your advisory team - your colleagues who, like yourself, have taken this road and are launching their own businesses. You will benefit from each other’s advice and support. This stage is facilitated by Michael O'Donnell.
Start-Up Now was launched through a grant from the Economic Development Administration, an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce. After having launched 17 businesses through the first three cohorts, we are seeking additional funding from organizations and people who want to positively impact entrepreneurship and the economy in South Florida.
It's All Yours
While we pay for training – about $20,000 worth of best practices, education and mentoring, plus 12 college credits - we don't pay to start your business; you do. Your commitment to us is that you will spend the money to meet milestones for your business. These are things investors or bankers will want to see before they consider funding you.
Perks For You
- Save thousands of dollars on a formal education
- Take advantage of the experience of successful entrepreneurs
- Use the latest and proven methodology – Lean Launchpad®
- Learn from entrepreneurs and investors
- Connect with mentors who bring a lifetime of experience
- Surround yourself with other hardworking and creative people starting their businesses at the Innovation Hub
- Earn 12 transferable college credits and a technical certificate in Entrepreneurship from Broward College
- Males must be registered with Selective Service.
- Have an innovative idea for starting a business, especially if it’s in technology (tech, financial, healthcare, social networking, gaming, etc.) or an innovative product or service.
- The “drive and commitment” to get it done
- You must be able to support yourself during the entire duration of the seven-month program
- Your work hours/demands should not interfere with the projects and coursework
- Days (all hours will be in the evening):
- First four weeks – 2 nights a week (TBD) – 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
- Remaining 26 weeks - 1 night a week (Wednesdays) – 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm
- Requires 15 – 20 hours of work outside of classroom time
- Qualifying ≠ selection; the program uses a continuous screening process at every phase
How to Apply
Companies Launched Through Start-Up Now
- Review this web page and what follows below to confirm that you qualify.
- If you are not already registered, register in Employ Florida.
- Complete online, download and sign the Start-Up Now application. Must be 18+ years of age or older.
- Your resume
- Copy of your DD-214 (if a veteran)
- Proof of Selective Service Registration. Must be registered with the Selective Service System (if male, born on or after Jan 1, 1960). Go to “Registration” then “Check Registration”.)
- Copy of your signed Social Security card, payroll stub with SSN or IRS tax form with SSN. Must be legally able to work in the United States — if not a citizen (see I-9 Acceptable Documents List and go to page 9).
- Copy of your driver’s license (or U.S. issued passport).
- Copy of your resident card or work permit authorization if non-citizen.
- Note: we will need your official high school and college transcripts within 3 months of acceptance into the program.
Send your application along with all documentation (see below):
Moya Bailey, Founder – BlkStreet
Mario de la Guardia
- Selected nationally as Fellow, National Minority Supplier Development Council
- Pitch Winner - Innovate Downtown
- Selected by the Venture Mentoring Team for advising
Margaret Delmont Sanchez, Founder – MagnifyFund
- Recipient, Prospera grant
- Fellowship recipient, FANO Sunshine Certificate in Nonprofit Management program
Shakeia Kegler, Founder – GovLia
- Pitch Winner – Vetpreneur
- Fellowship recipient, Founder Institute
- Selected by the Venture Mentoring Team for advising
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Start-Up Now promotes entrepreneur skills and is presented by CareerSource Broward in partnership with the Innovation Hub @ Broward College using Federal funds under award ED16HDQ0200018 from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. The structure, process, selection and final outcomes are those of CareerSource Broward and the Innovation Hub @ Broward College and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Development Administration or the U.S. Department of Commerce. An equal opportunity employer/program. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.