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Top 36 Accelerators and Incubators Investing in Illinois

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Looking to start a business in Illinois?

You've come to the right place.

The accelerator and incubator ecosystem in Illinois is continually expanding, so you'll want to keep track of them all.

To help you, we've put together an exhaustive list of 36 of the best incubators and accelerators in Illinois.


The 36 Best Accelerators and Incubators in Illinois

1) Envestnet

1) Envestnet

Envestnet provides financial advisers with technology-enabled investment and practice management tools.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 1999
  • Founders: Bill Crager, Brandon Thomas, James Lumberg, Judson Bergman
  • Industries: Architecture, Financial Services, FinTech, Wealth Management
  • Number of investments: 3

You can find their website here.

2) Cleveland Avenue

2) Cleveland Avenue

Cleveland Avenue is a venture fund and accelerator based in Chicago that invests in food, beverage, and technology startups.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2015
  • Founders: Don Thompson, J. Skyler Fernandes
  • Industries: Consumer Goods, Food and Beverage, Retail Technology, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 22
  • Number of exits: 1

You can find their website here.

3) Clean Energy Trust

3) Clean Energy Trust

Early-stage startups working on clean energy, decarbonization, and environmental sustainability are supported by the Clean Energy Trust.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2010
  • Founders: Amy Francetic, Michael Polsky, Nick Pritzker
  • Industries: Advanced Materials, AgTech, Clean Energy, CleanTech, Energy, Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, Transportation
  • Number of investments: 37
  • Number of exits: 3

You can find their website here.

4) Healthbox

4) Healthbox

Healthbox is an innovation consulting and fund management firm that assists businesses in developing and sustaining innovative initiatives.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2010
  • Founders: Nina Nashif
  • Industries: Health Care, Incubators, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 97
  • Number of exits: 12

You can find their website here.

5) Financial Solutions Lab

5) Financial Solutions Lab

The Financial Solutions Lab nurtures, promotes, and scales solutions that help low-income and marginalized people improve their financial health.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Founders: Jennifer Tescher
  • Industries: Asset Management, Finance, Financial Services, FinTech, Information Technology, Non Profit
  • Number of investments: 52
  • Number of exits: 6
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 51

You can find their website here.

6) 1871

6) 1871

1871 is a non-profit organization that assists digital designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs in launching their businesses and sharing their ideas.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2012
  • Founders: J.B. Pritzker, James J. O'Connor, Steven Collens
  • Industries: Advice, Consulting, Finance, Internet, Non Profit, Training

You can find their website here.

7) MATTER

7) MATTER

MATTER provides digital solutions to the healthcare business in order to improve products and services.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Founders: Andrew Cittadine, David Schonthal
  • Industries: Biopharma, Health Care, Health Diagnostics, Life Science, Medical, Medical Device
  • Number of investments: 1

You can find their website here.

8) TechNexus Venture Collaborative

8) TechNexus Venture Collaborative

TechNexus Venture Collaborative is a venture capital organization that invests in startups and offers strategic capital.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2007
  • Founders: Fred Hoch, Terry Howerton
  • Industries: B2B, B2C, Business Development, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 153
  • Number of exits: 11

You can find their website here.

9) Workbox Company

9) Workbox Company

Workbox is a Coworking Accelerator that equips forward-thinking businesses with the tools they need to grow quicker, better, and more collaboratively.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2019

You can find their website here.

10) Techstars Chicago

10) Techstars Chicago

Techstars Chicago hosts programs that link startups with investors, mentors, and other entrepreneurs.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2010
  • Founders: Nick Rosa, Sam Yagan, Troy Henikoff
  • Industries: Consulting, Financial Services, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 133
  • Number of exits: 26
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 12

You can find their website here.

11) REACH

11) REACH

REACH is a technology accelerator specializing in the real estate and related industries.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2012
  • Founders: Bob Goldberg, Constance Freedman, Dale Stinton
  • Industries: Business Development, Finance, Financial Services
  • Number of investments: 91
  • Number of exits: 15
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 30

You can find their website here.

12) Sandbox Industries

12) Sandbox Industries

Sandbox connects startups and companies with three different channels: strategic venture funds, accelerators, and advisory services.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2003
  • Founders: Jonathan Pirc, Nicholas Rosa, Nick Rosa, Ryan Schoop
  • Industries: Financial Services, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 85
  • Number of exits: 20

You can find their website here.

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13) Lofty Ventures

13) Lofty Ventures

We work with passionate founders, disruptive startups, and forward-thinking organizations to help them change the world.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Founders: Christopher Deutsch
  • Number of investments: 8

You can find their website here.

14) Relish Works

14) Relish Works

Relish Works is an innovation centre dedicated to disrupting the existing quo and paving the way for the food industry's next development.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2017
  • Industries: Finance, Food and Beverage, Food Processing
  • Number of investments: 6

You can find their website here.

15) EVC Ventures

15) EVC Ventures

EVC Ventures is a venture capital firm based in Chicago that invests in early-stage companies.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Industries: Finance, Higher Education, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 7
  • Number of exits: 1

You can find their website here.

16) IncubEx

16) IncubEx

IncubEx is a product, service, and technology incubator for exchange-traded products, services, and solutions.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2016
  • Industries: Business Development, Finance, Financial Services

You can find their website here.

17) Portal Innovations

17) Portal Innovations

Portal Innovations invests in outstanding leadership teams in pharmaceuticals, medical technology, and bioinformatics firms.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2020
  • Number of investments: 1

You can find their website here.

18) Excelerate Labs

18) Excelerate Labs

Excelerate Labs is a summer business accelerator whose purpose is to provide startups with connections, funding, and community.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2010
  • Industries: Consulting
  • Number of investments: 1

You can find their website here.

19) Elmspring Accelerator

19) Elmspring Accelerator

A seed-stage tech accelerator for real estate and related industries start-ups.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2013
  • Founders: Adam Freeman, Colleen O'Toole, Tom Bretz
  • Industries: Commercial Real Estate, Real Estate, Residential
  • Number of investments: 8
  • Number of exits: 1

You can find their website here.

20) Code Ventures

20) Code Ventures

To create and build your startup, CodeVentures acts as your tech cofounder.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Number of investments: 5

You can find their website here.

21) iVenture Accelerator

21) iVenture Accelerator

At the University of Illinois, there is an Educational Accelerator for exceptional student businesses.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Founders: Manu Edakara
  • Number of investments: 5

You can find their website here.

22) INCISENT Labs

22) INCISENT Labs

INCISENT Labs is a platform for launching disruptive technologies that challenge established industries.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2009
  • Founders: Pat Ryan
  • Industries: Innovation Management, Software
  • Number of investments: 4
  • Number of exits: 1

You can find their website here.

23) Insight Accelerator Labs

23) Insight Accelerator Labs

Insight's Accelerator Labs is a program devoted solely to assisting medical device startups.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2012
  • Founders: Steve McPhilliamy
  • Industries: Health Care
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 72

You can find their website here.

24) University of Chicago New Venture Challenge

24) University of Chicago New Venture Challenge

The Edward L. Kaplan, '71, New Venture Challenge (NVC) is one of the nation's best company launch programs, having been established in 1996.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 1996
  • Number of investments: 2

You can find their website here.

25) EMERGE CoLab (Powered by TechNexus Venture Collaborative)

25) EMERGE CoLab (Powered by TechNexus Venture Collaborative)

The hub for an ecosystem of businesses, startups, first responders, and cities working to improve efficiency and public safety through technology.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2015
  • Founders: Fred Hoch, Terry Howerton
  • Industries: Public Safety, Robotics, Smart Cities, Wearables
  • Number of investments: 11

You can find their website here.

26) StartUp Port

26) StartUp Port

Startup Port is a hybrid assistance platform that provides early-stage entrepreneurs with venture development solutions.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2008

You can find their website here.

27) Chicago Venture Summit

27) Chicago Venture Summit

The Chicago Venture Summit is a showcase of the Midwest's greatest early-stage innovation startups.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Industries: Events, Financial Services, FinTech, Insurance, Venture Capital
  • Number of investments: 1

You can find their website here.

28) Vantedge Ventures | Healthcare Innovation Fund

28) Vantedge Ventures | Healthcare Innovation Fund

Investing in and cultivating breakthrough technology, devices, and approaches to solve everyday healthcare challenges.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2017
  • Industries: Health Care, Information Technology, Innovation Management, Venture Capital

You can find their website here.

29) 511 Capital

29) 511 Capital

511 Capital is a mix of a private equity fund and an entrepreneurial startup incubator.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Founders: Russell Potterfield
  • Industries: Finance, Financial Services, Incubators

You can find their website here.

30) Kingologic LLC

30) Kingologic LLC

We are based in Chicago, Illinois, United States.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2017
  • Founders: Ali Khurram
  • Industries: Advertising, Freelance, Information Technology, Logistics, Small and Medium Businesses, Software, Web Development

You can find their website here.

31) SmartHealth Activator

31) SmartHealth Activator

Biotech innovation is being accelerated.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Founders: Tom Denison
  • Industries: Health Care

You can find their website here.

32) DWG Business X-celerator

32) DWG Business X-celerator

We identify and nurture the most promising Ukrainian and international projects through strategic development plans that include seed and venture capital funding.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Founders: Anton Chepurda
  • Industries: Automotive, B2B, Business Development, Business Intelligence, Electronics, Legal, Manufacturing, Software, Venture Capital
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 48

You can find their website here.

33) Moderne Passport

33) Moderne Passport

Seven-month programmatic immersion that gives knowledge, positioning, exposure, and insight to help customers grow.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Founders: Constance Freedman
  • Industries: Financial Services
  • Accelerator Duration (in weeks): 28

You can find their website here.

34) The Bunker

34) The Bunker

The Bunker is a program for veteran entrepreneurs created by veteran entrepreneurs for veteran entrepreneurs.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Started in: 2014
  • Industries: Incubators

You can find their website here.

35) Platform Venture

35) Platform Venture

Rather than focusing on quantity when it comes to the launch and development of portfolio companies, Platform Venture is laser-focused on quality.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Number of investments: 1

You can find their website here.

36) Women's Tech Accelerator by Brad Deals

36) Women's Tech Accelerator by Brad Deals

Brad Deals' Women's Tech Accelerator gives Chicago-based female entrepreneurs with exceptional business ideas access to tools and support.

Details of the startup:

  • Country: United States
  • Industries: Coworking, Finance, Financial Services, Management Consulting, Venture Capital

You can find their website here.

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