Startups who are invited into one of our 8-week cohorts can expect hands-on mentorship and community with like-minded founders with products serving older consumers. Each startup in the program is assigned a dedicated advisor who works with them to tackle the specific challenges they are facing.
Surrounded by a team with years of experience building and creating solutions for the 50+ demographic, startups gain rapid insight into the market and can tap into a breadth of resources like consumer insight tools, subject matter expertise, unique cohort-only events, business case development and more – all customized to meet your startup’s goals and help you succeed.
If you are a startup exploring opportunities in the longevity space, this is the place to be! AARP Innovation Labs is the intersection of technology and the longevity economy. You’ll be able to tap into decades of research and insights into consumers 50+ and the experts who live and breathe this work everyday.
On top of that, we founded our program with the goal to be hands-on. We aren’t just providing mentors, but dedicated support that acts as an extension of your team through the duration of the cohort. Our team dives in to understand your business, pain points, and goals so that we can best support your individual business needs, whether that is testing business models, collecting consumer feedback on your next release, or understanding what messaging resonates with your audience.
We kick off every cohort with a meet and greet with the other startups in the program so you get the chance to build a community and lean on other founders who are in the trenches of startup life alongside you. We like to say that there is “power in the cohort” and we’ve seen this time and time again with valuable connections made between startups.
During week one, you’ll meet with your dedicated advisor to identify your engagement goals and build a tactical plan for how you will achieve those goals over the course of the next 8 weeks. Goals can be anything from learning about your target audience’s pain points to creating effective marketing messaging to developing a plan to launch your product in market. Tactics can include a variety of things like speaking with experts on Medicare, building prototypes for user testing, collaborating on a product roadmap, and more.
You and your advisor will set up a time to meet each week, or at a cadence that works best for you, to check in on the progress toward your engagement goals. Between meetings, your portfolio manager will be working behind the scenes on the tasks to meet your goals.
In addition to working directly with your portfolio manager, our team provides weekly programming customized to the needs of the cohort (e.g., industries, themes). Events may include a fireside chat or open Q&A with experts from across AARP in areas like caregiving or policy, a workshop on growth marketing, or an opportunity to practice and refine your pitch.
To be eligible for the program, you must enter an AARP Innovation Labs sponsored pitch event. From there, the startups that are selected to pitch at the event are considered eligible. The AARP Innovation Labs team carefully assesses and selects the startups that best exemplify AARP’s mission to empower people to choose how they live as they age and show potential business growth. Learn about upcoming pitch events.
Our programs run four times a year. Our next open cohort starts in February 2022.
After successfully completing the program, startups may be invited to join AARP’s AgeTech Collaborative. The AgeTech Collaborative is our community of curated testbeds, industry leaders, investors, and other startups that are using technology to help people choose how they live as they age. Within the AgeTech Collaborative you’ll be able to search for pilot opportunities, access vendor services, and network with other AgeTech insiders.
Our cohorts are run completely virtually and have since day one. We’ve found our rhythm and been successful in building community between startups and Innovation Labs staff even in a virtual setting.
Time commitments can range from 1-2 hours per week to 5-6 hours per week, depending upon the engagement goals for your startup. You are welcome to include whomever from your team makes sense in weekly calls, user feedback sessions, and cohort events.
We do not charge or take equity for startups to join the program. Does this sound too good to be true? As a mission driven organization we sit in a unique position. We are looking to support and amplify the work of startups who are aligned with our mission of empowering people to choose how they live as they age. Your success is our success.
AARP’s mission is to empower people to choose how they live as they age. We are looking to support and amplify the work of startups who are aligned with our mission because at the end of the day, your success is our success.
Due to our non-profit status, we are unable to give startups access to AARP’s membership base or utilize the AARP brand in marketing your business.
AARP Innovation Labs can only work with startups who enter through one of our pitch events.
Consider applying to one of the Pitch Competitions sponsor. Regardless of whether you win, you may have an opportunity to work with AARP Innovation Labs.
We are looking to support and amplify the work of startups who are aligned with AARP’s mission to empower people to choose how they live as they age. We hold AgeTech Pitch Sessions throughout the year to identify startups that support this mission and invite them into our accelerator program. If you have a product or solution in the AgeTech space, you’ve come to the right place!
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