Understanding the Term "Cohort" in Startup Acceleration Program


The word "cohort" in the startup world, especially when used by Startup Accelerators like Marwari Catalysts, means a group of startup businesses chosen to be part of a special program for a set time.


Breaking Down the Concept ” Cohort ”:




A group of startups chosen to participate in a Startup Acceleration program for a specific period.


Startups from various sectors, like technology and healthcare, participate in a 6-month Acceleration program.

Key Characteristics

Group of Startups:
Carefully selected startups.
- Selected by an Accelerator:
Specifically by Marwari Catalysts in this context.
- Time-bound Program: A fixed duration, often a few months to a year.
- Diverse Industry Participation: Startups come from a wide range of industries

- What it Means: A collection of startup companies selected to join a special support program offered by a Startup Accelerator for a certain duration.

- An Example: Different kinds of startups joining a 6-month support program.

Key Features:

- A Selected Group: These startups are carefully picked by the accelerator.

- Limited Time: The program has a start and end date.

- Variety of Industries: Startups from different fields take part, offering a rich mix of ideas.

Detailed Insights:

1. Group of Startups:

Think of a cohort as a class or group of startups. They aren't chosen at random. An accelerator picks them based on how promising they are, among other things.

2. Chosen by Marwari Catalysts:

In this scenario, Marwari Catalysts is the guiding force. It's like a school for startups, picking those with the best ideas or potential based on various factors such as their business plan, market scope, and team capabilities.

3. Time-Specific Participation:

"Cohort" also means these startups join the program for a set period, which could be from a few months up to a year. During this time, they get support, resources, and guidance to grow.

4. Diverse Participation:

Startups in a cohort might come from all sorts of backgrounds like tech, health, and more. This diversity helps startups learn from each other's experiences and hurdles.

5. Together in the Program:

All startups in a cohort go through the accelerator experience together, attending workshops, mentorship sessions, networking events, and possibly ending with a demo day to showcase their work to investors.

Cohort Example Explained:

Imagine Marwari Catalysts Runs a Startup Acceleration Program “Thrive”

Thrive Acceleration Program Overview

We run a cohort acceleration program, 'Thrive', based on which we shortlist startups to help them achieve their goals and drive success. The selection process of our program is elaborated below:

How Does It Work?

1. Applications

The first step of the Cohort process is announcing and inviting applications for our cohort program. The application will include questions about your startup and request you to upload a pitch deck and one pager pitch.

2. Screening

Our screening process will be of 2-month duration and comprise three steps.

  • Reviewing Applications: We will screen the applications based on specific criteria, such as the startup's industry, stage of development, team size, revenue, and funding.
  • Shortlisting: The applications will be evaluated based on the pre-set criteria, and the most promising startups will be shortlisted from the pool of applicants.
  • Interview: Shortlisted startups will be invited for a virtual interview round to discuss their business in more detail. It will help our team understand the startup's vision, business model, and team dynamics.

3. Deal

There are three steps to the process of a deal or no deal.

  • Offer & Acceptance: We will make offers to the selected startups to join the startup acceleration program, and the startups can take further decisions.
  • Offer First Cheque: The first cheque of up to 50 Lakhs will be offered to the selected startups, and the details about the program structure and resources will be provided to them.
  • Term Sheet & Due Diligence: A term sheet will be prepared and shared with the startups to review. Thereafter, a due diligence round will be conducted on the shortlisted startups to perform a background check on the team, review financials, and check references.

4. Acceleration Program

Our Cohort Acceleration Program, 'Thrive', is conducted for a 3-month duration, comprising all the essential elements, including networking and mentorship sessions with top industry leaders and business experts.

5. Demo Day

Selected startups will be invited to pitch their business ideas to a panel of industry experts and investors. This can be a great opportunity for startups to pitch how they stand out from the crowd and attract investments.

6. Post Program

The selected startups are bestowed with benefits post-program too, which typically involve mentorship, training, access to resources, and networking opportunities. We will stay by your side throughout your startup journey, monitor your progress, and provide feedback and support to help you grow your business.

Key Features of Our Startup Acceleration Program

Marwari Catalysts is India's fastest growing Startup Acceleration , with a mission to help startups in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities scale their businesses.

Key Features


At Marwari Catalysts, we not only onboard startups into our acceleration program but also commit to investing in their success, embodying our motto of 'Mentors with skin in the game.' This ensures that we're not just advisors but active partners, aligning our interests with those of the startups we support.

-The 12-week Startup Acceleration Program

An intense 12-week program designed to give the participants access to knowledge, network, and resources to help you make your startup scalable and investable!

-Tailored Masterclasses

Expert mentors from the Startup and Business industry are available throughout the program to develop your business strategy, providing hands-on support and valuable lessons, ensuring you capture your vision and reach your goals.

-Topics and Solving Pain points

Business Model Canvas, Marketing and Sales, Financial Planning, Fundraising, Team Building, Scaling, Networking, Legal and Regulatory Compliance, Pitching, Distribution channels, Customer experience, Growth Strategy, Branding.

-Tools to Scale

Our participating entrepreneurs can access all our resources available at the office of Marwari Catalysts, including Co-working office space (desks, Wi-Fi, and Conference rooms for private meetings or presentations).
To provide an extra boost to startups, we’ve put together a bundle of credits, discounts and deals provided by an amazing group of partners. Some of which are AWS, Microsoft for Startups, Zoho, PayU, Freshworks, msg91 and more.

-Investor Networking and Events

Get a chance to pitch your startup to corporate partners, investors and industry leaders who are shaping the startup landscape and get their feedback.

- Fundraising

For startups that are venture capital ready, we’ll acquaint you with prepping your pitches and connecting you with Angel investors, VCs, - -

– Family Office funds.

Continuous research and support in filing for different government grants available for startups.

- Industry Connect

Support in connecting startups with established players and key stakeholders in their respective industries. Aiming to bridge the gap between startups and industry experts, fostering collaboration, knowledge sharing, and potential partnerships.

- 100+ Co-founders Club

Join a dynamic community of driven entrepreneurs within the MCats family to foster collaborative support among like-minded individuals in your industry. Together, we strive towards shared goals, leveraging our collective expertise and resources to propel each other forward.

Also Read : Pre-Seed Funding: What It Is, How It Works?


1. What is a cohort in a startup accelerator program?

A cohort is a group of startup companies selected to participate in a specialized support program offered by an accelerator like Marwari Catalysts for a fixed period. These startups are chosen based on their potential and the innovative nature of their business ideas.

2. How are startups selected for a cohort?

Startups are selected through a careful screening process by the accelerator. Criteria for selection include the startup's business model, market potential, the strength of the team, and the uniqueness of the idea, among others.

3. What is the duration of a typical cohort program?

The duration of a cohort program can vary but is usually set for a few months to a year. This period is predefined and aims to provide intensive support, resources, and mentorship to the selected startups.

4. Can startups from different industries join a cohort?

Yes, startups from a wide range of industries, such as technology, healthcare, e-commerce, fintech, and education, are encouraged to apply. We run category-specific cohorts so startups in diverse categories can apply and benefit from specialized support tailored to their unique needs and challenges.

5. What benefits do startups gain from being part of a cohort?

Startups in a cohort receive numerous benefits, including mentorship from industry experts, access to workshops and seminars on business development, networking opportunities with peers and potential investors, and often a chance to pitch their business to investors on a demo day at the end of the program.

6. Is participation in a cohort program simultaneous for all startups?

Yes, all startups in a cohort participate in the acceleration program simultaneously. They start and generally finish their journey together, attending the same workshops, mentorship sessions, and networking events.

7. What happens on a demo day?

Demo day is an event typically held at the end of a cohort program where startups present their progress and pitch their business models to a selected group of investors and industry experts. It's an opportunity for startups to attract funding and partnerships.

8. How does the diversity of industries within a cohort benefit the startups?

The diversity allows startups to learn from each other's challenges and successes, fostering a collaborative environment. It enriches the program by providing varied perspectives and solutions to common problems faced by businesses across different sectors.

9. What is the role of Marwari Catalysts in a cohort?

Marwari Catalysts acts as a mentor and guide for the startups in the cohort. They provide the necessary resources, funding, industry and investor connections to help the startups grow and succeed.

10. How can a startup apply to be part of a cohort?

Startups interested in joining a cohort program should look for application details on the accelerator's website, like Marwari Catalysts. The application process typically involves submitting a detailed business plan, information about the team, and other relevant details as requested by the accelerator.