INNOVATE. AMPLIFY. GROW:

CYBER ACCELERATOR PROGRAM

Join the next defense AI and cybersecurity-focused acceleration program starting in April 2023

Grow your startup and get funding

Get up to €100,000 convertible investment (70K cash + 30K program) + €250,000 as a follow-on opportunity

Build a sustainable business

Learn about the latest business, marketing, sales, and investment trends within the industry and set your startup for long-term success

Get support from top mentors

Get access to the top industry experts and practitioners, as well as hands-on support for all things business development

Set Your Cyber Startup For Future Growth

Wise Guys Cyber is a dedicated acceleration program for cybersecurity startups that will help test their business assumptions, speed up growth and conquer the world.

What

A 14-week hybrid accelerator program that requires your onsite presence for 3-4 weeks.

When

The program runs from mid-April (2023) to mid-July (2023). Applications open from January 24 to March 30.

Where

Wise Guys Cyber will be hybrid so there will be online and offline modules. While onsite, you’ll get to enjoy our busy yet cozy spaces in Bilbao.

Tailored Approach

Cybersecurity startups are inherently different from other SaaS startups with huge technical know-how and very concentrated distribution. The founders and teams need a different kind of acceleration with cyber-specific industry experts and technical mentors, as well as access to the market via partners and corporates. The risks are higher, but the rewards and impact are enormous.

At Startup Wise Guys we have found a fantastic secret sauce combination of investing and accelerating, experts and market access, as well as a geographical distribution that makes us unique. This is not a regional play, this is not an investment play, this is a Cybersecurity and Defence AI play, where Wise Guys Cyber is currently leading the way with over 30 investments.

Besides unique exposure to our wide network of VC’s, investors, commercial partners, and alumni, the program will cover the following:

SALES & MARKETING FOR INTERNATIONAL EXPANSION

COMPANY AND TEAM SCALING

PRODUCT GROWTH

FUNDRAISING NEEDS

Dates You Don’t Want to Miss

Wise Guys Cyber startup accelerator is a hybrid program that includes online and offline modules. For the on-site parts of the program you’ll be expected to be at our office in Bilbao.

Applications open

January 24

Applications closed

March 30

Program Starts

April 17

Program Ends

July 17

What startups can apply for the Wise Guys Cyber acceleration program?

Since 2021 there has been a huge surge in cyber attacks. With attacks, cybersecurity startups and scaleups have seen growth as well. Investment in this vertical has grown, with investors realizing the huge potential as digitalization and data increase.

Startups representing a wide spectrum of cyber:

  • Identity and access management
  • Data security
  • Mobile security
  • Threat and vulnerability management
  • Network security
  • Physical security
  • Threat intelligence
  • Malware analysis
  • Forensic analysis
  • and more

Startups meeting these selection criteria:

  • B2B focus;
  • Initial traction (can be shown through MRR, paid pilots, one-time payments for product test/usage, etc.);
  • Global ambition;
  • Free spoken English as the entire program will be run in English.

Futureproof Your Startup With Startup Wise Guys

Startup Wise Guys (SWG) is one of the leading early-stage investors in Europe. With 370+ successful startups in our portfolio and a strong team of top-notch mentors and serial entrepreneurs, we have the experience and knowledge to help you grow your startup—sustainably, wisely, and globally.

13

exits

370+

portfolio companies

700+

founders network

80%

Survival rate

358M€

raised by portfolio startups

Awesome Mentors

We have a deep network of 350+ mentors ranging from business developers and sales guys to cybersecurity gurus. They are all practitioners and supporters of our “no bullshit” philosophy! Here are some of our top mentors you will get the chance to meet and learn from at the Wise Guys Cyber accelerator program.

Kieren Niĉolas Lovell

TalTech Head of CERT, Social Engineer Instructor (King’s and Pembroke, University of Cambridge)

Remi Prunier

Investment Manager, Orange Digital Ventures

Joseph Carson

Chief Security Scientist at Thycotic, Founder and CEO of Wiretrap

Clare Lain

Head of Technical and International Engagement at UK Hydrographic Office

Camelia Isaic

Management Adviser, Strategic Investor Relation and Corporate Finance expert

Maurice McGinley

Director, Customer-Focused Innovation at Avast Software

Tony Anscombe

Industry Partnership Ambassador at ESET

Ralph Echemendia

The Ethical Hacker and CEO at Seguru
And 250 more… Take a look

Team

Running an accelerator is a bit like running a sports camp! This is the kick-ass team that will keep you on track with KPIs, give constructive feedback, and make the acceleration program a life-changing experience!

Egita Polanska

General Partner Wise Guys Cyber

Farid Singh

General Partner Wise Guys Cyber

Cristobal Alonso

General Partner Wise Guys Cyber

BRING YOUR CYBER STARTUP TO THE NEXT LEVEL

With more than 350+ startup investments behind our back and a solid team of serial entrepreneurs and passionate mentors, we sure have what it takes to help you speed up your business and scale internationally! Hit the button below and join the Startup Wise Guys family!

FAQs

Our programs are meant for B2B startups. We do sometimes work with B2B2C companies, but we do not work with B2C startups.

To be eligible for the full-time acceleration program you need to have:

  • at least a working MVP;
  • at least 2 co-founders/team members;
  • initial customer traction, MRR or revenues.

  • After the submission of the application to the Dealum, the Scouting team evaluates the application for eligibility. It can take up to 2 weeks for us to get back to you after we have received your application.
  • If the application fits our criteria we might ask you additional questions about business and ask you to go along with our due diligence process.
  • Due diligence process includes: the Tech call, Managing Director call, Partner/ expert calls.
  • After the startup has successfully gone through the due diligence process they are invited to a Deal call where we can close the deal.
  • TOP 5 teams are selected to participate in the acceleration program.

It’s an up to €100K convertible investment (70K cash + 30K program) with a €250K follow-on possibility after the program ends. If the startup is interested in setting up the legal entity and business activities in Bilbao, Spain, it can be eligible to receive a matching investment of an additional up to €100K.

Throughout the program, there are four main focus areas on which we are working to help you build and grow your startup: Company & HR scaling, Sales and marketing international expansion, Fundraising, and Product Growth.

Work in these areas happens through intensive collaboration with almost 100 mentors at workshops, one-on-one sessions, and sprint weeks, as well as through a dedicated implementation time throughout the program.

A full-time commitment is a requirement to participate in the program. Most of the activities will happen online, but we will organize 3-4 onsite weeks to provide the most value to startups by building a network with partners, investors and SWG members. Onsite weeks will be scattered throughout the program and adjusted to leverage other onsite events.

The Scouting team evaluates each application and decides what program the startup is eligible for. If we see the potential in the project, but it is still a little too early for acceleration we invite the startup for the 8-week long pre-acceleration program, where we provide mentoring and support to help startups grow faster. After the Pre-acceleration the best teams might get invited to take part in the full-time Acceleration program.

The acceleration program is a 5-month program and comes with an investment. The main criteria to be eligible for the equity-based program are:
– a working MVP
– at least 2 co-founders
– initial traction. MRR/ revenues.

Overall there are no restrictions except for Russia or Belarus-based companies.*

You have to take into account that the workshops, mentoring sessions, and other program activities will happen according to the CET time zone, so you might have to adapt to this schedule.

Also, it’s a hybrid program with online and onsite modules, therefore, if there are no Covid related restrictions, some parts of the program will happen onsite at our Malaga office, and you’ll be expected to be there.

*Startup Wise Guys does not and will not invest in Russia and/or Belarus-based companies (or companies that have business activities in Russia and/or Belarus and/or any other company which has management bodies and/or beneficial owners in Russia and/or Belarus). Nevertheless, we do support Russian- or Belarusian- origin startup founders who actively oppose Putin’s aggression and his regime.

For more details read our full statement and stand regarding the war in Ukraine.

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