Comcast Is the Latest Media Giant to Try its Own Startup Accelerator
Comcast is creating a multi-city startup accelerator as the telecom giant looks to nurture the next big thing in the media and entertainment sectors.
On Monday, the Philadelphia-based company and its NBCUniversal unit announced the launch of LIFT Labs for Entrepreneurs, a program aimed at fostering startups focused on media, entertainment, and connectivity. Comcast will begin accepting applications from entrepreneurs in January 2018, with the first LIFT Lab set to open in Philadelphia—in the under-construction Comcast Technology Center, next to the company's headquarters—early next year. The company also said it will open another location for the accelerator program in Atlanta later in 2018.
Comcast, which said that LIFT stands for "Leveraging Innovation for Tomorrow," will partner with the entrepreneur network Techstars on the Philadelphia-based accelerator. "Comcast was a startup more than 50 years ago in the Philadelphia region, and we understand the importance of entrepreneurialism to help drive growth, innovation, and the economy," said Sam Schwartz, the chief business development Officer at Comcast's cable unit. "We are excited to work alongside and learn from some of the best entrepreneurs while offering access to our experienced innovators to help them grow their businesses and take them to the next level.