Target Incubator was a three-month program geared toward early stage startups with a vision for making life better — for people, and for the planet. This accelerator provided the next generation of entrepreneurs with the mentorship and support they needed to flourish. With a proven platform that encouraged evaluation and iteration, Target Incubator put the spotlight on change-makers and world-shakers as they worked toward their goal of positively impacting the world.
We looked for future shapers of all kinds, but there are a few important elements we wanted to see from all program applicants:
Proof of traction and business incorporation (e.g., an established LLC).
A mission that aligns with “better for people and the planet.”
Majority ownership, and a participating founder who is 18 years or older.
Startups applied online, and finalists were invited to interview with our Accelerators team. Selections were based on mission, team, capabilities and potential for impact.
During the program, participants worked virtually with mentors, participated in skill-building sessions, met with executives and collaborated with fellow entrepreneurs — all from their home base.
Upon program completion, graduates participated in a final capstone event. This was their big chance to showcase their progress and preview where they’re headed next.
But the program didn’t end after the capstone event! As a member of Accelerators Alumni, they gained access to continued support, exclusive events and more.
In just two years, 16 outstanding startups have joined Target Incubator. They participated in a variety of mentorship sessions, workshops, founder fireside chats and more to help them hone their skills and accelerate their business. With so many resources available, each founder worked hard to rapidly evolve their business and move toward the next step in their entrepreneurial journey.
What really differentiated this program in particular was the access to subject matter experts and the vast expertise that we were able to connect with.
Generally speaking, an incubator is a collaborative program designed to nurture early-stage businesses. With the help of dedicated mentors and industry experts, an incubator lets startup founders iterate, test and revise their ideas in a supportive environment.
We’ve intentionally kept the definition broad, but ultimately we’re looking for businesses on a mission. If your business is driven to improve some aspect of our world, we want to hear about it.
No. Target Incubator is focused on helping accelerate incorporated, early-stage businesses with some kind of market traction (see “Criteria” section). If your idea doesn’t have a prototype or revenue, it’s probably not ready for Incubator yet. But once you’ve got it up and running, let’s talk!
No! Target Incubator is an equity-free program, so we won’t take any ownership of your company in exchange for participation. Your idea is yours to keep; we’re here to help you along the journey toward success.
Not necessarily. By applying and/or participating in any of Target’s Accelerator programs, it’s not guaranteed that Target will carry your product, service or technology. Viability for Target stores will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
No. We’ve intentionally designed the program to let you participate without disrupting your business operations at your home base.
Any company is eligible to apply, so long as  they are an established legal entity (LLC, B Corp, etc.), and  they have proof of initial traction (e.g., prototype, revenue or customer traction).
Founders must also be at least 18 years of age to apply. We recognize that there are many amazing young entrepreneurs out there, but we’re limiting the program to participants 18 and older at this time.
Each company must have at least one founder participate in the program. A co-founder or team member may also participate.
It’s the final culmination of all your hard work and rapid progress. Each capstone is a little different, but in general, you can expect to give a rehearsed pitch to Target representatives, fellow entrepreneurs and members of the larger community.
Yes! All Target Accelerator programs are open to startups across the globe.