Today we are proud to announce 19 new companies joining the ICA network: 11 companies are part of The Lab at ICA, our new four-week accelerator program for early-stage businesses, and 8 companies make up the newest cohort of The Accelerator at ICA, our four-month flagship program for growth-stage businesses.
Both programs are designed to provide Bay Area entrepreneurs with the support and advising they need to grow their companies to the next stage, get ready to raise capital, and create wealth for themselves and their workers.
ICA selected these companies for their growth potential, ability to benefit from our tailored coaching and mentorship, and readiness for investment. Meet the companies below!
A year of firsts.
This cohort marks the official launch of The Lab at ICA, a new program designed to support high-potential entrepreneurs at earlier stages of their growth trajectories. The 11 companies that make up The Lab’s inaugural cohort will participate in workshops, office hours, and high-touch advising focused on strengthening their business model, creating a path to increased profitability, establishing a 6 to 12 month growth roadmap, and preparing to take on capital.
We are also launching our new Seed Equity product, designed specifically for the earlier-stage companies that graduate from the Lab. By investing up to $50,000 in equity, this product will provide critically important capital the companies need to achieve their 6 to 12 month growth roadmaps.
ICA = connections to coaching and capital.
ICA provides a continuum of support for small business owners through the interconnection of coaching and capital. As companies complete our accelerator programs, they are evaluated for “right-sized” investment capital directly from ICA. Participants in the Lab will be evaluated for seed equity investments, while companies in the Accelerator cohort will be considered for growth equity investments of $200,000 to $850,000.
ICA has a strong track record of helping companies raise capital – since 2016, ICA companies have raised more than $50MM in outside capital. In 2020, Accelerator alumni company Don Bugito became the latest ICA Accelerator company to receive investment from ICA, with a $200K equity investment.
Meeting entrepreneurs where they’re at.
While our flagship Accelerator program has helped more than 30 companies develop and implement growth strategies over the past few years, the Lab will now allow us to serve earlier-stage businesses that haven’t yet reached the Accelerator’s revenue milestone of $500,000 or its 3 years in operation requirement. In many cases, these smaller businesses are held back by systemic barriers that inhibit entrepreneurs’ ability to grow.
Through research and learnings spearheaded by Strategic Program Manager, Caron Gugssa-Howard, as well as ecosystem partner feedback, we identified support gaps in the types of businesses ICA was reaching.
ICA is launching the Lab to fill this gap in coaching and capital for earlier-stage companies. Our goal is to speed the growth trajectories of these businesses, many of whom have faced obstacles in the form of systemic racism and inequity. By meeting entrepreneurs where they are, ICA can get an earlier start to our mission to accelerate great businesses. Through the Lab and the Accelerator, ICA is poised to serve may more diverse – and underestimated – entrepreneurs than ever before.
Meet the companies!
Acari Fish upcycles the hated, invasive devil fish into delectably meaty El Diablito jerky. Due to the fish’s unique texture, El Diablito tastes and feels like beef but without the environmental impact of traditional meat farming. | Mike Mitchell, founder
Afikomen Judaica is the premier Judaica store of the Bay Area and Pacific Northwest. Our curated selection of ritual & lifestyle items includes, jewelry, menorahs, seder plates, books, gifts, toys, and so much more. We maintain a welcoming space for all ages, affiliations and orientations. | Chaim Mahgel, Nell Mahgel-Friedman, co-owners
AVOCURL is an avocado hair line that sets the standard for quality ingredients in beauty products. Each product is handmade with simple, natural, and nontoxic ingredients and you can feel confident knowing that AVOCURL products are created with both love for hair and love for the health of our community. | Jasmine Curtis, founder
BerryClean is a cleaning company servicing the Bay Area’s homes and offices. Our team of professionals have been hand-chosen, are full-time employees, and are fully insured and bonded. Berry Clean uses the highest-quality plant-derived cleaning products and high-tech cleaning equipment. Berry Clean believes that our employees are our greatest strength. | Stanley Chen, founder
BRASH is an all-natural skin, scalp and space care brand focused on providing affordable luxury that makes our customers look, smell and feel as fly as they are! Our products are vegan and environmentally friendly. | Xenia Simms, founder
Charlotte Truffles is an award-winning chocolate shop based in Santa Clara. We specialize in curating flavors that represent the cultural diversity of our community. We take pride in creating flavors that connect back to a specific culture. | Charlotte Walter, founder
Down to Cook makes plant-based meal starters that are designed to be mixed with fresh vegetables to create delicious, complete meals. Our mission is to bring more people into the plant-based food movement by creating products that are healthy and accessible. | Trishna Saigal, founder.
Dragonfly Designs is a full-service virtual art experience company specializing in corporate team building and events, client appreciation, life’s special occasions and art classes for adults and children. | Stacee Gillelen, founder
The Sims girls grew up surrounded by a large family and good food. T hey remember the kitchen as the foundation of the family. BBQ brought everyone together. The Final Sauce makes all types of meat, poultry, fish, salads, vegetables, and fruits come alive with flavor. Also superb when used as a dip, marinade, BBQ, & more. | Florence Sims, Princess Sims, co-founders
Forest & Flour is an earth and community conscious kitchen and bakery that makes delicious nourishing foods that are free of gluten, dairy, peanut, soy, corn, and nightshade. Cheers to the healing power of ancestral wisdom! | Sway Soturi, founder
GDS makes reusable cloth goods designed for daily rituals. With 100% transparent sourcing and ethical manufacturing, we hope to bring meaning to people’s lives—the people who make our products and the people who use them. | Geana Sieburger, founder
GloGirl Cosmetics is a celebration of global beauty for all women. It’s about creating great makeup so that every skin tone can confidently wear the products without worrying about the color pay off. GloGirl is here to remind all women that the struggle is real and that we are all more alike than not. | Tosca Hillman, founder
Last Minute Gear is an outdoor gear shop on a mission to reduce waste & overconsumption while increasing equity in access to the outdoors. We're the only gear shop that offers 3 ways to get gear: buy new, high-quality gear, rent 24/7 with our self-service lockers, and borrow gear for free from our community-donated lending library. | James Dong, founder
Maker Studio is a multi-platform edutainment brand provoking newfound confidence in kids to be fearless creative leaders. Our arts and crafts products are designed to ignite curiosity, ingenuity, and success in STEM. We offer a robust list of live and on-demand classes to unleash the link between creativity and engineering. | Marissa Lucero, founder
The Oakland Craft Company creates thoughtful accoutrements for you and your home. Our company is black-owned and women-run; we center feminist, BIPOC, and LGBT icons in our designs; and our accessories are handmade by skilled artisans in the Bay Area and beyond. | Adjowah Brodie, founder
Teas With Meaning is an organic loose leaf and bottled tea blend company based in Oakland. The magic of her teas are that they have multiple uses outside of an organic, fresh cup of tea to sip. Whether in baths, yoni steams, your favorite yogurt or plant compost, TWM herbs can be enjoyed after the initial brew. TWM also sells handcrafted ceramic mugs, merch, custom candles, coasters and more. | Kamilah Mitchell, founder
Tallio’s Coffee is a coffee roaster and retailer headquartered in Bayview San Francisco. Tallio’s brings specialty, quality, high-end coffee and beverages including coffee brewing training to marginalized communities. Our community deserves a brand and a place that provides quality fresh brew coffee, and a place to hang out. | Olton Rensch, founder
Ugly Pickle Co. heals our food system by rescuing cosmetically-irregular produce and farm surplus to create snappy, fresh pickles and tasty condiments. | Kayla Abe, David Murphy, co-founders
Wisdom Supply Co. is a purpose-driven, women-owned B-Corp that designs zero-waste and plastic-free school and office supplies to prevent waste, for good. | Heather Itzla, founder
→ interested in joining our accelerator programs? reach out.