Cox Enterprises Partners with Techstars to Drive Innovation and Social Impact in Atlanta
Wednesday, June 12th, 2019
Cox Enterprises, in partnership with Techstars, announced the launch of Cox Enterprises Social Impact Accelerator powered by Techstars, a program that will fund and support startups addressing social and environmental challenges. Cox Enterprises, a private, family-owned company with $21 billion in revenues, has a long-standing commitment to building businesses that support local communities and the environment.
“Income inequality, cleaner sources of energy and sustainable food production are just some of the challenges we’re all facing,” said Alex Taylor, president and CEO of Cox Enterprises. “Our company wants to invest in the future, and empower great people to create a better future for the next generation. Investing in startups and accelerators like Techstars helps do that.”
Set to kick off in January 2020, the new three-month accelerator will provide hands-on mentoring, funding and global connections to 10 for-profit, mission-driven companies working to address social and environmental problems. Cox business leaders and experts will guide these entrepreneurs to help them boost their early-stage businesses, grow their networks and prepare them to pitch their companies to potential investors, Cox leaders and community members at a Demo Day presentation in April 2020. The accelerator will run each year for the next three years, creating opportunities for 30 different startups to participate in the program.
This unique accelerator will help draw entrepreneurs from around the world to the city of Atlanta, a growing hub for innovation and technology. Cox, which partnered with Techstars in 2016 to launch Techstars Atlanta, has already supported 30 Techstars companies in the past three years, half of which have stayed in Atlanta
In addition to Techstars, Cox also funds and supports startups and entrepreneurs through other Atlanta-based partnerships, including Engage, Endeavor and Startup Runway.
“Startup entrepreneurs who are trying to fundamentally solve big problems in innovative ways will feel right at home working with Cox mentors and leadership,” said Maury Wolfe, senior director of Corporate Social Responsibility and Public Affairs at Cox Enterprises. “Social responsibility is embedded in our business strategy here at Cox. It’s why we are making key investments like Techstars that both drive innovation and enhance our communities.”
In addition to investing in Atlanta’s startup ecosystem, Cox Enterprises is supporting its local communities and reducing its own environmental footprint. For example, the company has given more than $123 million in total cash and in-kind giving through Cox companies and the James M. Cox Foundation in 2018. Through its national sustainability program, Cox Conserves, Cox Enterprises is on track to send zero waste to landfill by 2024 and become water and carbon neutral by 2044. So far, the company has offset 567,000 tons of carbon, saved 276 million gallons of water and diverted 170,000 tons of waste from landfills, according to its annual CSR Report.