31 Best Startup Accelerators and Incubators in California 2024

For startup owners seeking funding, guidance, or a little bit of both, startup accelerators and incubators can be revolutionary resources. Finding the right program for your company, though, can sometimes be a challenge. 

In this guide, we’ll take a look at some of the best startup accelerator/incubator programs in California to help you find a program that will set your company up for long-term success.

Recommended: Learn how to launch your own company by reading our comprehensive guide on how to start a startup.

Top Startup Accelerators in California Article.

Startup Incubators and Accelerator Programs in California

In no particular order, we’ve highlighted some of the best startup accelerators and incubators that the Golden State has to offer.

We also recommend exploring our main list of the best startup accelerators.

1. Alchemist Accelerator

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Alchemist Accelerator is one of California’s largest and most well-known accelerator programs. Since being founded in 2012, Alchemist Accelerator has worked with over 500 startups. Alchemist Accelerator is an industry-agnostic program and is open to technical founders regardless of industry, location, product, business model, or stage. Noteworthy companies in the Alchemist Accelerator portfolio include NFTpay, Outwork, and Cattle Scan.

2. 500 Global

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

The 500 Global Flagship Accelerator Program is a startup accelerator that provides support and resources to early-stage startups around the world. The program is operated by 500 Global, a well-established venture capital firm that provides valuable support and resources to startups around the world. 

The accelerator program is designed to help startups accelerate their growth and bring their products to market quickly. The program provides intensive mentorship and support, as well as access to funding opportunities and a network of investors and industry experts. It lasts for four months and includes a range of activities such as workshops, pitch sessions, and one-on-one mentoring.

3. IndieBio

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

IndieBio is a VC firm that is committed to promoting startups that are solving engineering challenges with the help of biology. Since 2014, IndieBio has funded 425 companies and created over $9 billion in value. 

IndieBio focuses on working with early-stage biotech companies. Notable companies in the IndieBio portfolio include Upside Foods, Carbix, and Bucha Bio.

4. Y Combinator

  • Location: Mountain View, CA

Y Combinator is a large and well-known California startup accelerator that invests in early-stage startups across numerous industries. Each year, Y Combinator provides $500,000 in funding to a large number of selected startups, along with a range of activities designed to educate startup founders. 

Since 2005, Y Combinator has funded over 3,500 companies, with a total valuation between them exceeding $1 trillion. Noteworthy companies in the Y Combinator portfolio include Stripe, Instacart, and Gusto.

5. Village Global

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Village Global is a VC firm that provides startup founders with access to a network that is made up of some of the world’s most successful founders. This includes founders such as Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Sara Blakely. 

Not even counting the funding that Village Global directly provides, companies in the Village Global portfolio have managed to raise a combined total in excess of $5 billion. A few examples of companies that have found success with help from Village Global are AirOps, Brightside, and Living Carbon.

6. StartX (Stanford-StartX Fund)

  • Location: Palo Alto, CA

StartX (also known as the Stanford-StartX Fund) is a startup accelerator that is offered in partnership with the Stanford Graduate School of Education. This program focuses on helping early-stage startup founders secure funding, hire talent, and seek guidance from the Stanford University Alumni Network.

Since being founded in 2011, StartX has invested in 700 different companies with a current total valuation of over $26 billion. A few companies in the StartX portfolio include Alation, Kodiak, and Bolt.

7. Illumina

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Illumina Accelerator is an accelerator program with an emphasis on supporting innovative genomics startups. Startups that are selected for this program will receive seed investment opportunities and business guidance, as well as access to Illumina sequencing systems, reagents, and fully operational lab space in the San Francisco Bay Area or Cambridge, UK. 

Illumina Accelerator was founded in 2014 and has since invested in 39 companies. This includes companies such as Encoded Therapeutics, Mantra Bio, and DermBiont.

8. OneValley

  • Location: San Mateo, CA

Founded in 2012, OneValley is a startup accelerator program that provides seed and pre-seed funding along with access to innovation centers, enterprise services, and OneValley Passport. With OneValley Passport, founders are able to join an online innovation community that serves as an excellent resource for mentorship and collaboration. 

OneValley is open to pre-seed, seed, and post-seed/series A startups. A few notable companies in the OneValley portfolio include Hour Work, Poga, and Zensors.

9. Draper Goren Holm

  • Location: Westlake Village, CA

Draper Goren Holm is a blockchain venture studio and fund that focuses on accelerating and incubating blockchain startups. Startup founders that are accepted into this program can look forward to funding opportunities, hands-on guidance, and partner benefits such as strategic business advisory services and a formal introduction to the Draper Venture Network.

10. Plug and Play Tech Centers

  • Location: Sunnyvale, CA

Plug and Play Tech Center offers 60 different industry-focused accelerator programs that are targeted toward startups in 20 different industries. This includes programs for advanced manufacturing startups, energy startups, fintech startups, and numerous others. 

11. CITRIS Foundry

  • Location: Berkeley, CA

CITRIS Foundry is a startup incubator program offered by the University of California that focuses on supporting deep tech startups. Along with funding opportunities, CITRIS Foundry also provides accepted startup founders with access to the CITRIS Foundry community and the resources, labs, and facilities at the University of California.

12. ideaTree Inc.

  • Location: West Hollywood, CA

ideaTree is a startup accelerator that focuses on supporting disruptive startups in the mobile and internet space. This includes startups working in sectors such as fintech, social media, point of sale, sports, AI, cloud data, blockchain, crypto, and travel.

13. Founder Institute

  • Location: Palo Alto, CA

Founder Institute is a startup accelerator program that works with seed and pre-seed startups in a variety of industries. Startup founders that are accepted to this program are given access to a diverse pool of investors, Founder Institute’s virtual advisory program, and over $2 million in partner discounts from well-known services such as Dell, AWS, Google, and Stripe. 

Since 2009, Founder Institute has helped startups raise $1.75 billion in funding. Noteworthy companies in the Founder Institute portfolio include Peerby, Udemy, and Lily AI.

14. SAP.iO

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

SAP.iO is an industry-agnostic startup accelerator that has worked with over 525 startups since being founded in 2017. However, the program has a special focus on SaaS startups and even gives select startups selling software products the opportunity to sell their products directly on the SAP Store. 

15. MuckerLab

  • Location: Santa Monica, CA

MuckerLab is a startup accelerator that invests in seed and Series A stage companies, and the program is designed specifically for software startups located outside of Silicon Valley. MuckerLab only accepts 20–25 startups per year to its program, but startup founders that are selected can look forward to a year-long program that includes investment opportunities and hands-on business guidance.


  • Location: San Francisco, CA

The LAUNCH accelerator program is a 15-week program that provides startup founders with the opportunity to pitch their idea to over 700 investors along with one-on-one guidance from LAUNCH’s network of experienced business mentors. LAUNCH also operates the LAUNCH Fund, which directly invests in select startups. 

LAUNCH Accelerator is an industry-agnostic program that invests in startups across multiple verticals. Chatter, CloudNeuro, and SparkPlug are just a few of the companies in the LAUNCH Accelerator portfolio.

17. Expert DOJO

  • Location: Santa Monica, CA

Expert DOJO is an international startup accelerator that focuses on helping both US and non-US companies quickly scale in the American and global markets. Expert DOJO provides a $100,000 initial investment to companies that are accepted into the program, along with opportunities for outside investments and an opportunity for an additional $1 million investment from Expert DOJO once the program is complete. 

Since 2018, Expert DOJO has invested in over 200 companies located all over the globe. This includes companies such as Zeeve, Pharmacy Marts, and Yuva Pay.

18. AngelPad

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

AngelPad is a startup accelerator program that has been ranked as the “Top US Accelerator” by MIT's Seed Accelerator Benchmark every year since 2015. Since 2010, AngelPad has helped launch over 150 different companies, and the average funding for AngelPad companies is a remarkable $14 million. 

In total, AngelPad has helped startups raise $2.2 billion in funding. Notable companies in the AngelPad portfolio include Postmates, Pipedrive, and Buffer.

19. Berkeley SkyDeck

  • Location: Berkeley, CA

Operated by the University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley SkyDeck is a startup accelerator that leverages the 500,000+ network of Berkeley Alumni to help startups succeed. Startups that are accepted to this program will receive access to investment opportunities as well as help with talent acquisition and guidance from the program’s 480 advisors and mentors. 

Since 2012, Berkeley SkyDeck has helped startups raise over $1.7 billion in funding. Appa Health, DocuVision, and NextBiotics are just a few examples of successful companies in the Berkeley SkyDeck portfolio.

20. Cedars-Sinai Accelerator

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA

Cedars-Sinai Accelerator is a startup accelerator program that primarily focuses on innovative healthcare startups. This three-month program provides selected startups with a $100,000 initial investment, mentorship from more than 300 leading clinicians and executives, and access to a vast network of entrepreneurs and investors. 

Over 60 healthcare startups have participated in the program since Cedars-Sinai Accelerator was founded in 2016. This includes companies such as Acolyte Health, CancerAid, and HomeHero.

21. MARL 5G Accelerator

  • Location: Fremont, CA

MARL 5G Accelerator is a program designed to support startups creating deep-tech products and services for enterprise customers running on 5G. This program provides selected startups with a $50,000 initial investment, $500,000 worth of perks and benefits, and guidance from MARL 5G Accelerator’s 80+ experienced mentors. 

MARL 5G Accelerator focuses on verticals such as mobility, VR/AR, logistics, cybersecurity, and AI. Notable companies in the MARL 5G Accelerator portfolio include eBottli, Logiety, and Perceive Now.

22. Sweat Equity Ventures

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Sweat Equity Ventures bills itself as a “Value Accelerator,” providing guidance and expertise in exchange for equity. This program provides tailored, one-on-one support from Sweat Equity Ventures’ team of highly experienced operators, entrepreneurs, technologists, and founders. 

Sweat Equity Ventures was founded in 2020. Since then, the program has worked with companies such as Chainlink, Aven, and Coda.

23. GSD Venture Studios

  • Location: Menlo Park, CA

GSD Venture Studios is an investment firm that operates a startup accelerator called GSD Labs Hyper Accelerator. This program focuses on helping international companies reach a global market. 

Startups that are accepted to the GSD Labs Hyper Accelerator program are provided with the opportunity to pitch their company to a large network of investors along with an invitation to a 15-week course covering a range of business topics.

24. MedTech Innovator

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA

MedTech Innovator is a startup accelerator program that focuses on supporting startups in the healthcare technology space. It is a virtual startup accelerator program that does not require any equity or fees for participation. 

25. Motus Ventures

  • Location: Redwood City, CA

Motus Ventures is an early-stage VC fund and startup accelerator designed for startups creating innovative, disruptive technology across global industrial markets. This program focuses on key investment sectors such as AI and robotics, material science, space and defense, logistics, and transportation. 

Motus Ventures was founded in 2012. Since then, the fund has invested in companies such as RIOS, Locomotion, and Elroy Air.

26. Founder Friendly Labs

  • Location: Palo Alto, CA

Founder Friendly Labs is an industry-agnostic startup accelerator that does not require any equity from startups accepted to the program. This program provides selected startups with access to peer mentoring as well as credits from partners such as AWS, Stripe, and HubSpot. 

Since 2011, over 200 startups have completed the Founder Friendly Labs program. This includes notable success stories such as Carta, Osmo, and Amiato.

27. FORMA Brands

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

FORMA Brands is a startup accelerator and incubator that focuses on supporting startups in the beauty industry. Startups that are accepted to this program will receive assistance with product development, regulatory compliance, and supply chain creation. 

FORMA Brands also offers access to one of the most prolific influencer networks in the beauty industry, consisting of thousands of global creators with a combined reach of over 500 million people. Morphe, Lipstick Queen, and Jacklyn Cosmetics are a few companies in the FORMA Brands portfolio.

28. Nex Cubed

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Nex Cubed offers three different accelerator programs: an accelerator program for digital health startups, an accelerator program for fintech startups, and an HBCU accelerator program for startups with at least one founder who is an HBCU student, alum, or faculty member. 

Since being founded in 2016, Nex Cubed has accelerated over 300 startups and has helped them raise over $500 million in total funding. Noteworthy companies in the Nex Cubed portfolio include CareSpace, Butterfly Health, and Allofus.

29. Aurelia Ventures

  • Location: San Francisco, CA

Aurelia Ventures Scale Program is a startup accelerator intended for startups creating B2B SaaS products. Founders that are selected for this program can look forward to funding opportunities, support from a community of 200+ experienced B2B SaaS founders, and over $1.25 million in partnership benefits.

30. Techstars Music

  • Location: Los Angeles, CA

Techstars Music is an accelerator program committed to accelerating startups that are using technology to solve challenges in the music industry and drive the industry forward. This program is a hybrid accelerator program that features a combination of online and in-person courses. 

31. Ad Astra Ventures

  • Location: Solana Beach, CA

Ad Astra Ventures is a startup accelerator with a special emphasis on supporting women founders and women-led startups. Founders that are selected to Ad Astra’s Venture Builder program can look forward to 6-8 months of mentorship and strategic guidance along with opportunities for funding. 

Ad Astra Ventures also provides a Founder Bootcamp that includes a 15-hour course on how to succeed as a female business leader. A few companies that Ad Astra Ventures has invested in since being founded in 2018 include Skylyte, Sash, and Uqora.