Building a consumer product startup? Built Oregon wants to help. But you have to apply.

Being a founder is hard. Really hard. And lonely. And nowhere have I seen that more evident than consumer product startups. With tech startups, at least we’re online most of the day. On email. Or Slack. Or Twitter. It doesn’t make being a founder any less difficult. But at least you feel connected.

With consumer products, it’s different. Founders are busy cooking or sewing or prototyping. They’re dealing with warehouse issues or shipping to retailers or sourcing materials. They are literally offline. They’re completely detached. And in their own head.

And that’s why I’m so excited to get the chance to work with them again. And connect them. And support them. If only to stave off just a bit of that founder loneliness. To repair some of that disconnectedness.

So I’m happy to reveal that it’s time once again to begin accepting applications for the Built Accelerator, a startup accelerator focused on helping growing traded sector consumer products companies, like food, beverage, apparel, footwear, beauty, bags, and more. It’s a collaboration between Built Oregon — which works to connect, amplify, and accelerate Oregon’s consumer product companies and ecosystem — and PIE, an early stage stage startup accelerator that has been working with founders for more than a decade.

Built Oregon launched the country’s first not for profit (no cost + no equity taken) consumer product accelerator in June of 2019. The goal is to engage emerging brands through peer to peer engagement, mentor connections, and focused support.

We are currently accepting applications for a cohort beginning in the first half of 2020 and like the first one we will engage companies around a structured approach that focuses on finances, sales channels, and brand perception/positioning.

Applications are due by April 5, 2020.

For more information, read the coverage by Malia Spencer at the Portland Business Journal, see what Revant founder Jason Bolt thinks about the project, or visit Built Oregon.

[Full disclosure: I am the cofounder of both Built Oregon and PIE.]