The only startup accelerator dedicated to LGBTQ founders.

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What is the StartOut Growth Lab?

StartOut Growth Lab is a startup accelerator that offers top quality office space, mentoring, education, and networking opportunities for young companies that happen to be founded or co-founded by LGBTQ entrepreneurs. The Lab was founded in 2017 as a partnership between Nixon Peabody LLP, a full-service nationwide law firm, and StartOut, the largest nonprofit organization for LGBTQ entrepreneurs. 

StartOut Growth Lab ("SGL") hosts a new cohort of early-stage companies every six months starting in January and July of each year. Just seven companies are selected for each cohort. Think your company has what it takes?  Apply here.


“SGL opens doors into the world's biggest startup ecosystem. I met so many smart, connected people.”

Rachel Weinstein  |  Founder & CEO, MIXALOT

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How can being in StartOut Growth Lab give you an edge?

SGL is tailored to pre Series A startups that have a product or service in market testing or have already launched.


  • Space in a premium newly-built office suite with a conference room, a small kitchen, and shared open plan desks for overflow.

  • A premier downtown address in a flagship office building that enhances your company's image to potential partners, customers, and new hires.

  • Convenient access to restaurants, retail stores, and public transportation (Muni and BART).

  • Mentoring from a full-time entrepreneur-in-residence and leaders from StartOut's 15,000 member network.

  • Free legal consultations from Nixon Peabody lawyers.

  • Monthly Lunch & Learns with guest experts covering a broad range of topics presented by experienced executives, founders, and venture capitalists.

  • A graduation event at the end of your term open to the startout community of fellow entrepreneurs, investors, and industry leaders.


  • All company founders must relocate in the SGL office at One Embarcadero Center in San Francisco.

  • A spirit of collaboration, volunteerism and a desire to give back.

  • Agreement to take turns organizing our monthly group social events.

  • Mandatory attendance at monthly box lunch events with guest experts.

  • Long hours and hard work to make the most of your tenure at SGL.


“Great products are not invented, they are discovered. SGL provides the laboratory.”



What makes the StartOut Growth Lab different?

SGL's primary difference from most startup incubators is its explicit focus on supporting founders from the LGBTQ community. However, there is no requirement that the business target the LGBTQ community nor that its other founders or employees be gay.

What also sets us apart is the quality and extent of the resources we offer to our companies.  As a non-profit making a real impact promoting diversity within startup communities across the nation, StartOut attracts tremendous support from corporate sponsors and socially-conscious individual donors. This allows us to provide each cohort with services valued at more than $160,000.  

Our small size means each company gets lots of personal attention from our mentors, guest experts, and each other. We can promise you a work environment where everybody shares a deep commitment to diversity, community, and integrity.

Finally, we do not ask for shares in your company. Accepted companies just pay a one-time fee of $750 to cover utilities and incidentals for their 6-month term.  In return, we expect you to help out with chores, share ideas, participate in events, and contribute to the success of your cohort in particular and StartOut in general. And if you do achieve a successful exit, we hope you'll give back with a tax-deductible donation to StartOut!

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