Y Combinator wants to bring more startups through its accelerator that can help with the COVID-19 crisis, and the firm is looking to expedite the pace of its application process so it can put money behind the efforts sooner.
The accelerator’s most recent batch “presented” just last week in a virtual demo day that was adjusted in light of the early outbreak. Just a week later, the situation has progressed substantially, and YC’s team says they are looking to bring in a new class of startups to tackle issues relating to the pandemic.
YC shared some of the new fields it was looking to invest in specifically, which include testing and diagnostics, treatments and vaccines, hospital equipment and monitoring/data infrastructure. Startups that fit the bill will be fast-tracked, funded and tossed into a remote program immediately.
YC is looking for companies that can be helpful, but at the same time it’s looking to invest in businesses that can remain viable post-crisis, the company says on its site:
For a startup to have an impact in time to address the current crisis, it will have to move faster than most people think is possible. This means the founders need to have domain expertise in the area; they also need to have a plan for how to have a significant impact globally in a short timeline. They also need to have a path to building a sustainable business after the crisis is over.
In addition to sharing details about funding new companies, YC also shared a website detailing some of the efforts to help being undertaken by their existing portfolio companies.