A consortium of investment firms has come together to support accelerator program HaxAsia that focuses on hardware startups in Asia. Ruvento Ventures, IncuVest, DI-Group and SpinUp Partners are the investors behind HaxAsia that takes its participating hardware startups from Singapore to San Francisco and Beijing to help bring their wearables, smart gadgets, consumer robotics, 3D printing and other consumer-focused hardware with smart software to a global market.
Accelerators with a crowdfunding element are stepping in where traditional crowdfunding campaigns have turned out to not always be the best option for hardware startups. One of the most common problems with crowdfunded hardware projects is manufacturing products to scale and on time with resulting shipping delays.
HaxAsia does things differently. The six-month accelerator program invites entrepreneurs in Asia to approach HaxAsia in Singapore once they have a prototype or can give assurances that they can build one in two months. Non-Asian startups are also welcome. The program is focused on Hardware 2.0 and the Internet of Things.
Once accepted, the startup team goes to Singapore for about six weeks where they work to perfect their prototypes in the recently opened IDA Labs co-working space. Working under the mentorship of HaxAsia, they also start preparing for their crowdfunding campaign. HaxAsia’s industrial design partners give hands-on advice during the prototyping process and production details are discussed with the accelerator’s manufacturing partners.
If that goes successfully, the startups move on to Silicon Valley for a partner program hosted by BootstrapLabs to run their crowdfunding campaign on IndieGogo. Here they get an opportunity to pitch to media and investors. If they reach the crowdfunding goal of at least $500,000 the operation moves on to Beijing where a partner contract manufacturer will help them to produce their first batch of products.
At this stage HaxAsia will provide startups that decide to operate out of Singapore with up to $500,000 to scale up their business. Alternatively, San Francisco-based BootstrapLabs might choose and invite some startups to stay in San Francisco and join their 12-month accelerator program.