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Managing Partner, XLR8UH
Managing Partner, Sultan Ventures
Treasurer, Hawaii Venture Capital Association
State of Startup Paradise
Brief Snapshot on the Impact of Hawaii
Accelerators Over the Last Four Years
Data was collected and aggregated from four different accelerator programs in less
than a week to produce this snapshot of the Startup Paradise ecosystem.
Each entity tracked, deﬁned, and interpreted their metrics slightly differently, using
self-reported data (both from their portfolio startups as well as from themselves). This
data snapshot therefore very likely contains inaccuracies.
The key takeaway from this presentation is that despite the fact that the numbers may
not be exact, there is an overall positive trend developing in our ecosystem, Startup
Finally, as with any venture fund, and especially with accelerators, the Power Law plays
a signiﬁcant role – i.e. a few outlier companies that are outperforming are raising the
average for the rest of the startups. While, those outliers are exactly what the venture
capital sector is seeking, they do skew the results fairly signiﬁcantly.
Startup Paradise: What are Accelerators?
Incubators Angel Investors Accelerators
Duration 1 to 5 years Ongoing 3 to 6 months
Cohorts No No Yes
Business model Rent; non-proﬁt Investment
Investment; can also be
Selection Non-competitive Competitive, ongoing Competitive, cyclical
Venture stage Early or late Early Early
Ad hoc, human
Mentorship Minimal, tactical As needed by investor Intense, by self or others
Venture location On - site Off - site On - site
Table Courtesy: Cohen, Susan. “What Do Accelerators Do? Insights from Incubators and Angels.” innovations 8.3-4 (2013): 19-25.
Startup Paradise: Circa 2011
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON STARTUP PARADISE EMAIL INFO@SULTANVENTURES.COM
• Partner Organizations
– E.g. corporate involvement
• “Quality” Applicants > Quantity
– IP (patents, copyrights, and trademarks)
– Teams with college degrees
– Teams with prior (for-profit) experience
What Improves (Accelerator) Program Performance?
Startup Paradise: Ideas Moving Forward
Increased Corporate Engagement
Focus on Hawaii strengths in high tech, STEM industries
Focus on the Human Capital
Support and Invest in Education
Support and Promote Commercialization at UH
Invest your time and provide guidance to a startup
Encourage legislation to create an investor and startup friendly State
Startup Paradise: Conclusion
This presentation only skims the surface of the overall startup ecosystem activity that is occurring
in Startup Paradise Hawaii.
We at Sultan Ventures look forward to collaborating with future reports that include more data
and detail, not only in terms of startup / investment activity, but also in terms of all of the holistic
elements that create a successful ecosystem including activity from Co-Working / Incubator
spaces, Government, Educators, Non-Proﬁts, Startup Initiatives, and other supporting entities.
We hope this presentation sparks greater interest in Startup Paradise and ignites efforts of
others to generate reports with more comprehensive data.
And ﬁnally to all those involved in the startup community, locally and nationally, we hope this
presentation helps shines some light on the amazing progress and momentum we have here in
Aloha from Startup Paradise!