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If you’re a security startup you may want set up shop in Virginia, not Silicon Valley. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell officially opened the doors to a security-focused startup accelerator today called Mach37.
The accelerator is modeled in the same form as Y Combinator, 500 Startups, and Techstars, according to a release by the organization. Each year, Mach37 will accept two classes of startups that will be mentored by security industry veterans, technology professionals, and investors for a 90-day period. Those startups will receive a round of investment at the beginning of the session and another after the successful completion of a demo day.
Mach37 will be based out of Virginia’s Center for Innovative Technology and is getting its first funding from the Commonwealth of Virginia. It will then look to private investors to fund the startup and keep the accelerator running.
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At this point, only 8-10 companies will be admitted in each class, compared to the 40-50 companies Y Combinator admits. No word yet on how much money each startups will receive. The accelerator hopes, however, that the amount of advising and access to industry professionals will help speed up the time it takes to get these startups into the wild.
“The active ingredient that enables the accelerator to reduce startup development time is CIT’s sophisticated network of cyber experts, technologists and investors that will be integrated with entrepreneurs from the start of the 90-day session and throughout their early years of company formation,” said Virginia Secretary of Technology Jim Duffey in a statement.
A number of high-profile companies and organizations helped set up the accelerator, which Governor McDonnell hopes will make Virginia a destination for cyber security needs. These companies include Capital One, the CIA, DOD, Department of Homeland Security, General Dynamics, In-Q-Tel, Lockheed Martin, McAfee, New Enterprise Associates, and more.
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