January 13, 2022 - The Creative Coast’s annual Idea Accelerator Bootcamp is a virtual 12-week educational and mentoring program starting with a free pre-course to help attendees determine if entrepreneurship is the right path for them. The event is powered by the Advanced Technology Development Center (ATDC), Georgia’s Technology Incubator housed at Georgia Tech. The Idea Accelerator Bootcamp is for anyone who is ready to test their business idea or anyone who wants to update an old business.
Workshops will be taught by the following instructors:
Jennifer Bonnett is a Recovering Entrepreneur/StartupChick and Executive Director of the Creative Coast. Jen is a serial entrepreneur who has raised over $50 million in angel and venture capital funds across three startups. Previously she led ATDC for 7+ years in Atlanta before moving to the area in 2018.
Radford Harrell is the resident Startup Catalyst for ATDC in Savannah. Rad manages the ATDC Savannah programming and works with entrepreneurs looking to build technology companies and product-based startups in the greater Savannah region. Also, a serial entrepreneur, his most recent venture is as CEO of the very successful TalentSoup.com.
Dwayne Stephens is the Program Director at the Creative Coast for Make Startups and is a budding serial entrepreneur. He launched his first business, a retail store in the Savannah Historic District, at the age of 28. Since then he has launched another venture as a Built Environment Consultant where he advises companies and everyday people alike on how to navigate building projects.
In addition to Jen, Rad, and Dwayne's instruction, the program will offer various lectures and mentorship from a pool of very talented subject-matter experts at every stage as well. The Idea Accelerator Bootcamp is a community effort including contributors such as Savannah SCORE's mentors, as well as the Savannah Economic Development Authority and the City of Savannah. This year's program leverages the Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac program, a full online suite of tools, which will help participants develop their business plan, financial model, and more.
Aspiring entrepreneurs interested in learning about The Creative Coast’s startup accelerator program should plan to attend the first Info Session on Jan. 25 from 6-8 p.m. This free session will contain a detailed overview of the entire program schedule. After the info session, attendees will have a better idea if they want to commit to the full $300 program.
The full program officially begins the second week in February and ends in the middle of April. Meetups will occur once per week, every Tuesday from 6-8 p.m. These courses will include instruction on creating a strong "Why" for the entrepreneurship journey, explain how to validate an idea, help attendees build a financial model, and cover how to incorporate structure. Finally, the program will end with learning how to position the company story to investors, employees, and customers. Attendees will be required to complete activities, research, and communicate between weekly workshops to help them execute and make progress on their business ideas. Workshops will take place virtually via Zoom. Registrants will be emailed a Zoom link one to two days before the Info Session on Jan. 25.
To learn more about the program and sign up for the info session, visit https://thecreativecoast.org/programs/idea-accelerator-bootcamp/.