We launched our first accelerator five weeks ago. Here’s where things stand

As many of you know, the Launchpeer team started our first-ever internal accelerator earlier this year. It’s a pretty awesome and unique (at least we think so!) program that provides one early-stage startup with over 300 hours of development as well as mentorship, marketing assistance, and workspace. In other words, our accelerator team actually walks away with a fully built product and a brand strategy that will bring in paying customers. No fluff. No “roadmap.” An actual, functional product with actual, real-life users.

Did we mention all of this is free?

We’re officially five weeks into the program with Purple Panda, a new Charleston startup working on a mobile app that will connect homeowners and businesses to local workers for on-demand jobs like moving, yard work, or repairs. Think odd jobs, without the Craigslist oddballs.

Through the app, job posters can find, hire, and manage pre-vetted labor for $20/hour, and job seekers can access short-term local jobs, earning $14 of that $20 hourly rate…well above minimum wage.

So where do things stand so far?

Our amazing developers Mike, Gabriel, and Andrew (seriously, we love them) are building the Purple Panda website and mobile app over the course of three design sprints.

They’ve already started web development and will have a working site up very soon. Check out a little sneak peek below: 

 

They’ve also started front-end development of the app and have built the consumer and Panda account setup process as well as a job selection feature. Over the next couple of weeks, they’ll continue adding features like push notifications, job confirmations, and live chats.

As development ramps up, Allyson and Cori on our marketing team have begun collaborating with Purple Panda’s co-founders to develop a strategic marketing plan that will carry the startup from beta to launch. They’ve planned forthcoming video, blog, and social media content to showcase all that Purple Panda will offer on both the consumer and worker side.

In the next few weeks, Purple Panda will be running some exciting promotions and giving you a chance to sign up for early access to the app. Make sure you’re following Launchpeer on Twitter and Facebook to find out when the Purple Panda site launches!

And it’s not just our team that’s putting in work. Purple Panda’s co-founders are half the reason we chose this team for our first accelerator (in addition to the fact that they’ve got a well thought out, impactful, and scalable concept…obviously).

You can hear their backstory and why they teamed up to create Purple Panda on this recent episode of the LaunchChat podcast.

Gavin McCulley is an active angel investor, startup mentor, and entrepreneur. He’s currently the President of Sidecar Enterprises and Partner at Twin Rivers Holdings; he previously founded Geekin Radio. Greg Finch is a patent and corporate attorney who advises businesses on everything from IP and patents to trademarks and licensing. He works regularly as outside general counsel for tech and consumer product startups, and he’s an equity partner in several Charleston-area companies.

Clearly, they both live and breathe entrepreneurship and they know what it takes to make a startup successful. The past five weeks have been a truly collaborative process, with Launchpeer and Purple Panda basically acting as one cohesive team. We’ve been meeting, strategizing, and tackling to-do lists one (fast-paced) day at a time, and while there’s still a ton of work to do, the next seven weeks are going to be one heck of a fun ride.

We hope you’ll stay tuned for more updates in the coming weeks! 

acceleratorJake Hare