VIP SAN FRANCISCO

Looking to start a business in the Bay Area? Our San Francisco accelerator for students and alumni provides all the resources of the Penn/Wharton community on the West Coast.

Wharton’s Bay Area Accelerator

For some startups, San Francisco is the only place to be — and that’s why Penn Wharton Entrepreneurship created a Venture Initiative Program specifically for students and recent alumni in the Bay Area.

VIP-SF is an accelerator open to Penn students and alumni entrepreneurs who are developing their own ventures. This four-month program runs twice a year, in the fall and in the spring. The team must be based in the San Francisco/Bay Area during their time in VIP-SF.

Applications for the VIP-SF Fall 2019 Cycle are now CLOSED! The next VIP-SF application cycle will open Spring 2020.

What You Can Do With VIP-SF

  • Work with a mentor who will help you realize your full potential.
  • Access co-working space at Wharton San Francisco.
  • Receive expert advice on how to navigate your startup’s unique challenges and opportunities with one-on-one advising.
  • Gain actionable insights from cutting-edge Wharton research and experts who have scaled successfully through workshops and group advising.
  • Connect with a network of entrepreneurial alumni who will inspire and motivate you.
  • Get feedback during biweekly group advising sessions with advisors, including VCs, angel investors, attorneys, and successful entrepreneurs.
  • Apply for awards, seed funding and the opportunity to apply for funding through Wharton Alumni Angels of Silicon Valley.
What can VIP-SF do for you?

What We’re Looking For

The application process for VIP-SF is highly competitive. To ensure you’re ready, we highly recommend that applicants have already taken academic coursework such as MGMT 231/MGMT 806: Venture Implementation or the Wharton Entrepreneurship Specialization on Coursera. Here’s what we want to see on an application:

  • Knowledge of business fundamentals
  • Validated product-market fit
  • Measurable traction (i.e. revenue)
  • Necessary expertise on the team

VIP-SF SPRING 2019 COHORT

Mike Lunati (WG’13); Marc Suter; Ramin Ghelichi; Demtrios Kellari

AI-Powered Platform that Connects Energy Projects to Financing Companies, Automating the Financial Due Diligence Processes.

Kristen Dumbeck (WG’20)

The world’s first seasonal perfume brand, with an optional subscription.

John McDowell (WG’11)

Inscribe Labs changes medical documentation from a complex burden to a simple review and sign process.

Phong Ngo (WG’20)

Eclipse is the first aftermarket overlay for mobile phones that incorporates a durable, optical interference coating designed to eliminate unwanted reflection on mobile phone displays.

Lyn Oswald (W’80); Jack Oswald; John Selling

ISOThrive is a microbiome therapeutics company that has developed a new patented and patents-pending treatment targeted at high value Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) sub-populations with significant unmet needs.

Tomide Awe (WG’17)

Olori means Queen in the Nigerian language, and we offer luxury African handbags that empower women – every bag pays for one month of education for an under-resourced little girl in Africa.

VIP-SF 2013 COHORTS

SPRING 

  • Bedi Parry (WG’12) – SocialGlimpz
  • Vijay Ramani (WG’13) – SocialMoola

VIP-SF 2015 COHORTS

SPRING 

  • Angela Chen (WG’14) – Capalio
  • Brad Graw (WG’15) & Peter Schilling – Joint Effort Corporation
  • Anna Lai (WG’14) & Becky Yip – Litmus Scientific
  • Manisha Belsare (WG’16) & Shreyas Desai (WG’16) – MYKTUP
  • Sally Huang (WG’15) & Aaron Yip – Roominate
  • Jeni Incontro (WG’16) – Stage Stream
  • Jon Jones (WG’16)- Vendri

SUMMER

  • Pav Dharwakar (WG’15) & Rel Lavizzo-Mourey (WG’15) – Silver Lining
  • Gunjan Garg & Manisha Gupta (WG’16) – Heartyy.com
  • Rishi Reddy (WG’16) – Navigation Health

FALL

  • Aravind Aluri (WG’16), Jory Lamb (WG’16) & Jeremy Martin (WG’16) – JAMM 3D
  • Min Yue (WG’16) – Kids Connect (Kiko)
  • Mary Patton Davis (WG’16) & Jenna Gebel (WG’16) – LeadUp
  • Kristof Schum (WG’16) & Domonkos Szabo – Nash
  • Brian Overland (WG’15) – Prolegis
  • Johnie Lee (WG’17)  & Pramod Adiddam – SmartFi
  • Rithesh Punyamurthula (WG’16) & Stephen Tahta (WG’16) – Synergys
  • Michael (Chi) Chen (WG’16) & Josh Zhou (WG’16) – TrueCare

VIP-SF 2016 COHORTS

SUMMER

  • Miranda Wang (C’16) – BioCellection, Inc.
  • Andrew Pietra (WG’17) – Qorum, Inc.

FALL

  • Alonzo Ellis (WG’17), James Green (WG’17) & Anderson Lunsford (WG’17) – Breach Response
  • Ronald AngSly (WG’17) – InnaMed
  • Edward Jiang (WG’17) & Gandis Mazeika (WG’17) – Spotful
  • Justin Cleveland & Evan Drake (WG’17) – Stayz

VIP-SF 2017 COHORTS

FALL

  • Igino Cafiero (WG’17) & Aubrey Donnellan – Bear Flag Robotics
  • Cory Bray (W’06) & Hilmon Sorey – ClozeLoop
  • David Jacoby (W’01) & Margot Schmorak – Hostfully
  • Daniel Judd (ENG’14, W’14) & Renee Migdal (WG’83) – Kinima.fit
  • Joanne Jiang (WG’13) – LadyMarry
  • Philip Cortes (WG’11) – Novi Bank
  • Tony Campos (WG’16) – Pivot Health Company
  • Fahad Jalal (WG’12) – SitterFriends

VIP-SF 2018 COHORTS

SPRING 

  • Ridhima Parvathaneni (ENG’13, W’13) – Boon VR
  • Harman Narula (WG’15) & SJ Sawhney – Canary Technologies
  • Michael Jue (ENG’03) & Nicholas Ng (ENG’03, GEN’04) – docCheer
  • Ted Chen (W’87, L’91) & Mike Demele – LifeSaver

FALL

  • Roman Pedan (ENG’10, W’10) – Kasa Living
  • Bianca Gonzalez (NU’08, WG’19), Flora Chang (WG’19) & Janak Agarwal (WG’19) – TaskUnite
  • Daniel Doyon (W’06) – Workplace Hospitality Management (WHM)
  • Marina Ibarra (WG’12) – Wolox
  • Alice Zhang (WG’08) – Zoba Life

MEDIA MENTIONS

BEAR FLAG ROBOTICS NOMINATED FOR AGRIFOOD TECH INNOVATION AWARD

Bear Flag Robotics, a 2017 VIP-SF alum, was recently nominated as one of the “Most Innovative US Startup Pre-Series A” companies. Each year, startups are selected by a committee of notable players in agrifood tech venture capital. A total of 12 teams are selected across 12 categories and winners have gone on to raise over $420M in capital.

READ MORE HERE.

Elaine Kunda’s Disruption Ventures makes Hostfully its first woman-led deal

Canadian women-focused venture firmDisruption Ventures cut its first cheque, backing a startup that serves the fast-emerging vacation-rentals sector. Disruption invested in the US$1 million seed round of Hostfully, a San Francisco software provider that helps rental-property managers streamline operations and engage with guests

READ MORE HERE.

Still Have Questions?

We’re happy to help.