Y Combinator is now accepting applications for the Winter 2015 funding cycle. It will take place in Mountain View, CA from January through March 2015.
If you want to apply, please submit your application online by 8 pm PT on October 14. Groups that submit early have a significant advantage because we have more time to read their applications.
On October 28, we'll invite the groups that seem most promising to meet us in Mountain View between November 13 and 18. We'll reimburse up to $1100 per group for travel expenses.
We decide who to fund after each day of interviews. Yes decisions will include the amount we’ll invest and the percent of the company we’d want for it. (We do not of course ask for anything from nonprofits.)
If we invest in you, your group is expected to move to the Bay Area for January through March 2015. You can of course leave afterward if you want, but it's a good place for a startup to be.
After you're accepted, we'll immediately get to work helping you set up your company, if it isn't already. As soon as your company exists, we'll write a check to it for the investment. You can spend the money however you want.
Y Combinator doesn't supply office space. We have space you can use if you need to, but we expect you to work out of wherever you find to live. It is no coincidence that so many successful startups have started this way; it's the ideal setup for the initial phase.
We have regular office hours year round for startups who want to talk about what they're building, or get advice on dealing with investors. We also have occasional events at YC.
During and after the 3 months we introduce startups individually to people who could help them. The founders of other YC-funded companies tend to be especially helpful. There are now about 1400 of them, and they're usually very willing to give advice or make introductions.
About 11 weeks in, we organize an event called Demo Day at which the startups present their business plans to a carefully selected, invite-only audience.
YC doesn't really end after 3 months; only the dinners do. We continue to give advice and make introductions as long as founders need—and so does the informal network of YC-funded companies.
Who We Fund
How do we choose who to fund? The people in your group are what matter most to us. We look for brains, motivation, and a sense of design. Experience is helpful but not critical.
Your idea is important too, but mainly as evidence that you can have good ideas. Most successful startups change their idea substantially.
The ideal company would have two or three founders. We'll consider those with four or five. We're reluctant to accept one-person companies, though we have funded a few.