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The GSBI® Accelerator helps social entrepreneurs understand and fill gaps in their organizations that prevent them from achieving scale and helps them identify and find appropriate capital to rapidly increase their impact. Embracing impact investors as a constituency in capacity development helps social entrepreneurs demystify the fundraising challenge by conveying what investors seek; it also highlights the work of social enterprises to appropriate financial capital sources.

The GSBI Accelerator highlights investment readiness as a central theme. It partners with the Impact Capital program, which provides thought leadership in coordinating appropriate capital and financial innovation, Together, these programs address disconnects in investment readiness in the social enterprise ecosystem, as articulated by impact investors and social entrepreneurs alike. Impact investors helped architect the 2013 GSBI Accelerator.

The GSBI Accelerator addresses several key needs as social enterprises prepare to scale:
• Business model evaluation and refinement
• Financing plan for scaling and preparation for diligence
• Operational excellence at scale
• Organizational development and talent management
• Marketing strategy and execution

Mentoring is at the core of the GSBI Accelerator program. Each social entrepreneur selected as a part of a cohort is paired with two Silicon Valley executive mentors and one Local Mentor. The GSBI mentors are successful Silicon Valley executives, many of whom are former founders of NASDAQ companies or venture capitalists. Local mentors are identified through networks of partners, alumni, and participants; they serve as a resource to the social enterprise with local context, knowledge, and expertise.

Key Dates
• Oct 31: Applications due
• Nov '13: Interviews
• Dec '13: Notify finalists
• Jan '14: Announce cohort
• Feb '14: Program start
• Aug '14: In-residence
• Dec '14: Program end


Cassandra Staff Working to help more social entrepreneurs help more people
Hallie Noble Global Social Benefit Institute Program Manager
Matt Philippe Growth @F6S