In March of this year, Sequoia Capital—a pioneer venture capital fund that backed Apple, Google and other giants—announced its first acceleration program for founders of seed-stage startups.

Its first batch started in May in Europe with 17 selected, and now it is the turn of the “New World”: this Monday, Sequoia opened applications for its Arc program, in which the firm will invest US$1 million in each company just for being selected.

The program is a seven-week mentorship where they coach the founders (20 or so) in their “Company Design.” In their words, “is the Sequoia way to start, build and scale enduring companies. It is an ongoing process rooted in evergreen foundations, an outlier mindset and a powerful community advantage discerned from fifty years of working with legendary companies from idea to IPO and beyond. The value of establishing these principles early compounds over time and can meaningfully bend the arc of a company’s trajectory.”

Those chosen for the Arc program in Europe visited Klarna’s offices in Sweden, where they interacted with its executive staff. (Photo: Sequoia Capital)

The mentoring involves people from Sequoia and entrepreneurs who are part of its network. The program lasts from September 12 to October 26 and includes on-site and remote modalities, according to the fund website. The face-to-face weeks are at Sequoia Capital’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and in between, a company from Sequoia’s portfolio is visited. In Europe, the startups went to Sweden to meet Klarna, one of the largest fintech in the world.

Although entrepreneurs from Latin America do not have a guaranteed place, since the application is for the whole of the Americas, it would not be strange to see more than one Latin American startup selected. Sequoia has bet on the region before (Rappi, Nubank) and even published an article last year celebrating LatAm as the ideal scenario for tech companies to disrupt the traditional economy. 

(Main photo: Adobe Stock)