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Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs Accelerator Opens Applications

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Since the start of the LIFT Labs Accelerator in 2018, 43 alumni companies have raised a combined $96 million. (Image credit: Comcast)

PHILADELPHIA—Comcast is now accepting applications from global startups in connectivity, media, and entertainment for the fifth class of the Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs Accelerator, powered by Techstars.

This year, the company is looking to mentor and invest in startups developing world-class technologies and products in the program’s core focus areas: Connected Living; Immersive and Inclusive Experiences; and Smart, Sustainable Enterprise, the company said. 

Founders can apply through May 11, 2022, for the program, which begins in August 2022 in Philadelphia.

Since the start of the LIFT Labs Accelerator in 2018, 43 alumni companies have raised a combined $96 million. In addition, 72% of LIFT Labs accelerator startups have secured proofs of concepts, pilots, or commercial deals with Comcast, NBCUniversal, and Sky, as a result of the mentorship they received in the program. 

This includes alumni like AfroLandTV, which worked closely with the Xfinity and NBCUniversal teams during the accelerator and now distributes their content to millions of households through Xumo, X1, and Peacock. 

Another alumni of the program, Introvoke, now powers virtual events for several teams at Comcast. Thinker Tinker, an alumnus from the first LIFT Labs accelerator, developed a children’s toy and app platform based on the Trolls animated movie franchise in partnership with DreamWorks Animation. 

In addition, LootLocker is working with G4, NBCUniversal and Game Jolt on a 2022 Game Jam focused on the next generation of game developers and creators.

The 2022 accelerator is planned to take place primarily at the Comcast Technology Center in Philadelphia. Danielle Cohn, vice president of startup engagement and head of LIFT Labs; Luke Butler, executive director of startup engagement, Comcast NBCUniversal; and KJ Singh, managing director, Techstars; will lead the program and work closely with the startups over the accelerator’s 12 weeks. 

Founders will also collaborate with mentors and product experts from across Comcast NBCUniversal’s businesses, including the Xfinity teams; NBC and Telemundo; Sky; Universal Studios; Universal Parks and Resorts; DreamWorks Animation; Illumination; Comcast Business; and Comcast Spectacor; as well as mentors from Techstars’ global network.

Techstars has invested in more than 2,900 companies with a combined market cap of more than $179B. 

“Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs has been a beacon for our organization since it began five years ago, lighting the way for how we engage and collaborate with startups from around the world who are at the forefront of building new technologies in connectivity, media, and entertainment,” said Cohn. “In addition to supporting founders, LIFT Labs also complements an innovation infrastructure that encourages our employees to think creatively and enhances our perspective of the future, which leads to further benefits for our company, our communities, and our customers. The past four programs have been incredible, and I can’t wait to see what’s on the innovation horizon for our fifth class.”

Over the next several months, LIFT Labs and Techstars will recruit in six cities, offering interested founders the opportunity to meet program leaders and alumni at office hours and networking events. Tour cities include: Miami (3/23), Atlanta (3/24-25), Los Angeles (3/29), Chicago (3/31), Philadelphia (4/20), New York City (4/21), with additional events planned for London and Tel Aviv. 

All event information and registration can be found on the LIFT Labs website at lift.comcast.com/events (opens in new tab).

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.