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Calling All Dreamers: Disney Is Launching a Startup Accelerator Program

February 13, 2014
URL: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/231509

Beginning this summer at The Walt Disney Company, it’s a small (business) world, after all.

In keeping with its commitment to innovative technology and visionary works, the company will sponsor 10 startups for a three-month mentorship program, whereby participants will receive $120,000 in investment capital and mentoring from top Disney execs.

The incubation initiative, called Disney Accelerator, will be powered by leading seed-stage investment program Techstars. Applications, due April 16, are available now, with the program slated to begin in June.

Disney is seeking tech-powered startups, it said, with products and services in the consumer entertainment and media space -- “no scripts, screenplays or ideas for attractions, please.”

Related: Disney Adds Jack Dorsey to Its Board

In addition to access to Disney stories, characters, resources and relationships, winners will receive support from Techstars’ vast global network of entrepreneurs.

The Los Angeles-based program will culminate in late September with a demo day, during which participants will present their companies to industry luminaries including Disney’s chairman and CEO, Robert Iger, as well as leaders from Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm, ESPN, Walt Disney Imagineering and more.

The Disney Accelerator is very much a testament to the legacy of its founder, the company said.

“Walt Disney had a dream, and the entrepreneurial will to make that dream come true,” said Disney. “Combining creativity and innovation, he built a company that is forever inventing new ways to tell stories.”

Related: Feel This: Disney Wants to Bring Virtual Objects Into the Real World. Sort Of.