Ascend Medtech Accelerator Guidelines

Button: CLICK HERE to download the full application guidelines documentAbout the Ascend Medtech Accelerator, powered by VentureWell and LEAP

VentureWell is seeking seed-stage medtech startups to participate in a 12-week hybrid program focused on clinical pilots, fundraising, and the de-risking activities necessary for successful product launch and commercialization at scale. This program structure includes a three-day in-person workshop in Lansing, Michigan (May 16-18, 2023), followed by 10 weeks of online programming featuring cohort-based exercises, customer discovery, and independent work. On August 16, 2023, participants will reconvene in-person in Lansing for an innovation showcase.


VentureWell will select 20 medtech startups for the cohort across medical devices, diagnostics, and software. Startups should be preparing to start clinical pilot studies and raise a seed round in the coming year.

Team identified & startup formed. First-time founders with management team and key roles identified, no one-person founders. Incorporated as a legal entity by the beginning of the program.

Early market validation. Validated customer segments and initial evidence of product-market fit. Articulation of economic value proposition and evidence of patient or clinician buy-in.

Intellectual property. Provisional patent(s) filed and assigned to the company or a clear pathway to the license.

Technology validated. Initial prototype developed, pre-clinical trials or animal studies underway. Program is designed for devices, diagnostics, and software.

Actively fundraising. Company has raised at least $25,000 (grants or equity) and is preparing for an equity investment round within the next 12-18 months.

Positive impact on patient outcomes. Clearly articulated assessment of how your technology will have a positive impact on patient outcomes and lower the cost of quality healthcare.

Commitment. Management team, including CEO or founders, should commit to the full program. CEO must serve as the main point of contact and should attend all sessions. Meeting participation is required in all 3 parts of this hybrid program, including 3 days in-person to start (May 16-18, 2023, Lansing, MI), 5 hours per week for the following 10 weeks (May 24-July 26, 2023, Online), and our final innovation showcase (August 16, 2023, Lansing, MI).

Program Cost. We are able to keep fees low thanks to the generous support of LEAP and have waived registration fees. Startups are responsible for their own transport and accommodation costs for the in-person portions of the program.

How To Apply

1) Cover Email
Clearly indicate that, if accepted, you can commit members of the startup’s executive leadership for the entirety of the program. The individual acting as CEO should be attending, at minimum. This is required in order to get the most out of program activities and to build a strong, interactive cohort.

2) Brief Executive Summary
You may use this template ( Address all areas in the template, but edit the formatting to suit your brand. Elaborate in the Technical Summary as needed. (Maximum 2 pages.)

3) One-page Technical Summary, Including:
The startup’s product or service, and how it works; stage of development and testing, and next steps for achieving subsequent technical milestones; current IP status and next steps; and diagrams or photos with a summary of any high-level data that demonstrates that the technology works.

4) Your Current Investor Pitch Deck

5) Visit, click “Apply Now” on the sidebar, and submit your materials via our application portal.

Application Deadline: February 22, 2023.
Questions? Contact Cara Barnes.

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