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momentum 2An equity-free accelerator program sounds almost too good to be true, but Momentum announced its program today that offers a free twelve week program to support promising mobile startups.

Momentum is an initiative out of Mobile Monday, an international community of people in the mobile industry who come together at events for networking and discussion. The founders of Mobile Monday were interested in opportunities to support mobile startups in more tangible way and founded Momentum to “give back” to the mobile community.

“Mobile is clearly top of mind for most companies, investors, shareholders, and executives as they develop strategies to innovate, increase revenue, and sustain their competitive advantage in the future,” said founder Arte Merritt in an email. “We want to contribute to moving mobile technology forward. Mobile is a huge opportunity and we are looking for innovative startups to participate in what is coming next.”

Participants in the program will work out of coworking space RocketSpace, and have access to mentors, workshops, and a dedicated team member for support. They will attend one-on-one meetings with corporate sponsors, VC pitch sessions, industry dinners, and present at a demo day. Merritt said Momentum is unique because it is vertically-focused on mobile and targets companions that are already shipping a product and have raised some funding. Third, and perhaps most importantly, Momentum is a non-profit and takes no equity.

“Our goal is to help the startups get commercial deals and develop deeper relationships within the mobile community, to truly accelerate their businesses, as opposed to teaching startup basics,” Merritt said.

Momentum operates with sponsorship from Intuit Samsung, PayPal, Rocketspace, and law firm WSGR. The plan is to offer multiple classes each year around the world. The first class has five startups:

  • Fiverun brings the “Apple Store” shopping experience to any brick and mortar retailer, enabling retail associates to sell more, faster, directly from a tablet, which unifies online and offline products into a single shopping cart.
  • Locomizer is an enterprise, location analytics platform that enables audience discovery for relevant targeting.
  • Orbeus is a cloud-based, visual recognition engine that can make sense of faces, scenes, and objects in both images and videos.
  • PocketMath is a mobile demand-side platform that optimizes ads through real-time bidding.
  • Squrl is a mobile platform for discovering and watching both long and short form video content.

Photo Credit: Mobile Monday

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