Snapchat's Parent Company Plans to Invest $1.5 Million in Media Startups

Snap has announced a new accelerator program called Yellow focused on 'mobile storytelling.'
Snapchat's Parent Company Plans to Invest $1.5 Million in Media Startups
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Earlier this week, the parent company of Snapchat announced a new accelerator program, Yellow, dedicated to companies focused on creative “mobile storytelling,” further blurring the lines between social networks and media companies. (Facebook consistently insists it’s not one.)

Snap will kick off its inaugural Yellow program this September, through which it will invest $150,000 in each of a maximum of 10 media startups in exchange for an unspecified amount of equity.

Related: What Tech Companies Such as Snapchat and Their Users Should Remember When Updates Cause Outcry

“They’ll receive the tools needed to grow a business from the ground up, including funding, mentorship, introductions to industry veterans and creative office space,” the Yellow website reads, “as well as the opportunity for distribution on Snapchat.” Snapchat’s Discover section already features content from a range of media partners.

That mentorship will come directly from Snap’s executive team, including co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel. Spiegel will help to select participants, as well as advise them during the three-month program in regular meetings, a spokesperson told Recode.

Snap will consider applicants who have ideas for storytelling on any mobile platform, not just Snapchat. This could take the form of “an interactive story, a show, an AR experience, building the next big media company or something in between,” according to the Yellow site.

Each participant team will consist of one to four people, working full time out of Snap’s Venice, Calif., headquarters. The Snap representative also told Recode that the size of the equity stake the company will take from each startup would be comparable to that of Silicon Valley’s Y-Combinator incubator, which invests $120,000 for 7 percent and has accelerated the likes of Airbnb, Dropbox and Instacart.

Snap is accepting applications for its first cohort through July 8. The program is slated to run Sept. 10 through Dec. 7, 2018.

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