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Programs: Programs

Eco Accelerate 

A true Philadelphia business accelerator rooted in small business growth and nonprofit equity. The smart way to grow local.

The Eco Accelerate Difference

Most business accelerators are built on the food chain franchising concept – national companies giving local providers opportunity to grow in exchange for business ownership. In the long-term, however, this model only makes the big companies bigger, while giving locally-owned businesses a small chance to compete.

In response, the Eco Accelerate model is designed to  create ecosystems with equal equity and investment across the board, giving people the opportunity to invest resources to support local businesses, nonprofits and entrepreneurs. To do so, Eco Accelerate connects nonprofit organizations and their supporters with local businesses and the residents they serve. The partnership is designed to generate sales for small businesses from consumers looking to ‘shop local’ and support their chosen nonprofit in the process. In addition, small businesses have the opportunity to support nonprofits impacting their community and customers. With every dollar generated through the Eco Accelerate model, both local businesses and their nonprofit partners win. For shoppers, it’s a win-win.

To compete with online marketplaces that attract customers with discounts and deals – drawing them away from local businesses and increasing shipping waste – our model attracts consumers who want to shop local and invest in their community. With each online purchase, customers know they are making a donation to the nonprofit of their choice and supporting a business that cares about and invests in their community. 

For small businesses looking to get into online sales, we provide less expensive start-up and cost-per-sale investment (4% per sale plus donation amount set by the company) than other digital marketplaces. The return-on-investment however, is high, as companies receive digital marketing and advertising support from the nonprofits they fund. When nonprofits ask their supporters to help raise money through the digital marketplace, new customers learn about and engage with their business partners. More information coming soon.

Most of our efforts pertaining to this program involve studying new approaches and developing innovative ways to implement them. We evaluate our success in this field by gathering qualitative and quantitative data, and using that information to measure shifts and changes from our baseline measurements.

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