Backstage Capital to launch accelerator in Detroit

On the heels of Backstage Capital’s announcement to launch an accelerator for startups led by underrepresented founders, the venture capital firm has selected its fourth location. Backstage Capital decided on three of the cities ahead of time and held a public vote to determine the fourth. Well, the results are in and Backstage Capital has landed on Detroit, Mich. for the accelerator’s fourth location.

“It’s a rising standout for entrepreneurs in the Midwest,” the firm writes on its site. “Innovation and technology in the city are booming, and Detroit startups are attracting capital from Silicon Valley as well as local investors and government.”

Backstage Capital is also going to run accelerators in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and London. Through Backstage Capital’s accelerator, the firm will invest $100,000 in each company in exchange for five percent equity. Unlike other Silicon Valley accelerators, there won’t be a demo day because it “seems a little like standardized testing,” Backstage Capital Founder and Managing Partner Arlan Hamilton said at TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco last month. The deadline to apply is October 15.

Backstage Capital’s mission is to provide early seed funding to founders who are women, people of color and/or LGBTQ — groups that are vastly underrepresented in Silicon Valley. A few months ago, Backstage Capital launched a $36 million fund. Since receiving its first check from a limited partner in 2015, Backstage Capital has invested in 100 companies — writing checks anywhere between $25,000 and $100,000. You can read more about the accelerator below.