For three years, Target has been helping grow startup companies through various accelerator programs. Currently, the portfolio includes six offerings: Target Takeoff, Target Incubator, the METRO Target Retail Accelerator, Certified by Techstars, and the Target Accelerator Program.
“Working with startups gives Target the opportunity to consider testing outside innovations that might someday help us enhance our assortment and guest experiences,” read a company statement. “In exchange, the startups get access to many of our resources—including mentorship, expertise and programming to help them ultimately learn how to scale their business to reach mass retail.”
Two programs which recently kicked off their latest rounds of cohorts are Target Incubator—the Minneapolis-based retailer’s newest accelerator—and the Metro Target Retail accelerator, recently renamed following a partnership development.
Target Incubator focuses on helping novice, young entrepreneurs further their business ideas, while the Metro Target Retail Accelerator focuses on retail startups in any and all stages of development.
Target just announced the eight companies participating in the current Target Incubator cohort. They were selected from a pool of applicants whose businesses are mission-driven—that revolved around improving the planet or sociocultural conditions.
The chosen cohort includes:
Meanwhile, with Target Incubator’s latest cohort already underway, the latest cohort of the Metro Target Retail Accelerator is set to begin their program later this week. The program was founded in 2016 and has since helped nearly 30 startups progress their business.
In December it was announced that for the first time, the Metro program would go global, as Target teamed up with German retailer Metro Ag to revamp the retail accelerator that was formerly known as “Target + Techstars.” The name change came when Metro Ag was brought in, with the idea of the partnership being to attract more startup applicants from around the world.
Participating startups will receive up to $120,000 in initial investment, as well as intensive mentorship from Target and Metro leaders, and development sessions will focus on taking an idea from concept to market and crafting compelling pitches to aid in fundraising and business development.
The businesses chosen to participate in the upcoming Metro Retail accelerator cohort are: