Viterbi Startup Garage

USC Viterbi's Unique Incubator for early-stage technology startups
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LIVE APPLICATION FOR SPRING 2024

Interested in becoming a resident? Apply Now!
Spring 2024 Application

ALL NEW SPACE COHORT

This Fall, the Viterbi Startup Garage will host its first Space Cohort in partnership with USC Viterbi's Center for Research in Space Technologies (CREST) and El Segundo-based Aerospace Corporation (TAC), the federally funded non-profit corporation providing technical assistance in all aspects of space missions to military, civil and commercial customers.

Teams focused on space technologies are invited to apply for Fall 2023 residency and specify that they request consideration for the Space Cohort. In addition to the resources and programming available to all VSG teams, Space Cohort teams will receive mentorship and technical assistance from TAC.

RESIDENT BENEFITS

ONE YEAR RESIDENCY PROGRAM

  • Located in the heart of Silicon Beach in Marina Del Rey, the Viterbi Startup Garage is an incubator for early-stage technology startups.
  • We focus on:  Deep Technology, Machine Learning and AI-Enabled companies, and are very faculty-friendly.
  • We are supported by the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering and do not take equity or charge any fees.
  • Any IP developed by the teams is theirs to keep.
** View the Spring 2023 video recording and Spring 2023 slide deck from the VSG Residency Program Info Session.

Place to Call Home

Enjoy 24/7 access to co-working space. Our residents view our space as their primary office and regularly engage with colleagues, mentors, and staff.

The USC Network

Get dialed in to USC’s famed network of alumni, mentors, investors and potential partners, both here in Southern California and beyond.

Extensive Support

With tactical assistance including Innovator-in-Residence coaching, topical workshops, and more, enjoy the resources you need to transform technology into a viable business.

Amazing Community

Surround yourself by like-minded entrepreneurs, working under the same roof to bring ideas to life. Join a community where teams are supportive of one another, readily help each other, and cheer each other on as they seek to make their own dent in the universe.

Strategic Guidelines

Enjoy 24/7 access to co-working space. Our residents view our space as their primary office and regularly engage with colleagues, mentors, and staff.

I-Corps Hub West

I-Corps Hub West (sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation) works closely with the Viterbi Startup Garage to help startups identify commercial opportunities and accelerate their understanding of the marketplace via The National I-Corps Program.

Regular Events and Activities

Founder's Circle

VSG founders meet together weekly to share war stories, practice pitches, or ask advice over a casual lunch.

IIR Office Hours

Once a week, our founders benefit from a check-in with a seasoned business executive or venture guru (VSG Innovator-In-Residence).

Oceanside Chat Speaker Series

Our speaker series invites investors, serial entrepreneurs, and topical experts to share advice and insight for entrepreneurs. Talks are open to the full VSG community. Sign-up on our mailing list below to stay informed.

VC/Angel Office Hours

Regularly meet with local area VCs and Angel investors for consultation. We run these panel style with 2-3 investors per room in 20 minute slots.

Summer Intern Program

The Summer Smasher is an eight week free internship program tapping into the talent pool of USC's undergraduate and graduate students.

Technology Innovation Exchange

In conjunction with the Information Sciences Institute, the Technology Innovation Exchange is an opportunity to get researchers and experts from USC to weigh-in on technical challenges.

Startup Boot Camp

Learn the tactical side of setting up your company by diving into the deep end on topics including capitalization tables, incorporation, Boards of Directors, and other nuts and bolts, as well as emphasizing customer discovery.

Upcoming Open Events

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About Our Student Summer Program

VSG’s Summer Smasher program is designed to give current USC students a crash course in entrepreneurship! It offers a strong experiential component where you join our community of fully operational tech startup companies as an Entrepreneur-in-Training.
Check out the Summer Smasher Program

What Do the Founders Think?

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“One of the first presentations organized by VSG highlighted the opportunity space at CalTestBed, a grant initiative offered by the California Energy Commission. I followed up with the presenter afterwards and he encouraged me to apply. It’s a highly competitive program, but we were accepted – that’s just one of the funding sources and competitions that were made available to us through VSG, those steps along the way that put you on a path to success.”

Dr. Anita Sengupta, Founder and CEO at Hydroplane

Read about how Anita is on a mission to decarbonize aviation.

Viterbi News
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“One of the hidden gems of the LA startup ecosystem - as a company that doesn’t believe in remote work whatsoever, working out of VSG IRL every day helped us go from 0-1 and forge our early team culture.”

Keyan Kazemian, CEO and Co-Founder at 222

Read about how 222 wants to match perfect strangers for bespoke, real-life experiences.

TechCrunch Article
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“During our time at VSG, we were able to scale our operations a lot thanks to the help of the IIRs. Having amazing advisement so available to us, in addition to a physical space to put their advice into action, has had an incredible impact on our growth as co-founders, as a company and as entrepreneurs.”

Amanda Grennan, Co-Founder and COO at Dopage

Find the ladies of Dopage on Forbes 2024 30 Under 30!

Forbes Announcement
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“As a first-time founder, the mentorship from the IIRs was absolutely critical. They helped us refine our pitch and sharpen our product-market fit. As a result of their continuous feedback, we were able to win two startup pitch competitions since joining the VSG.”

Warren Su, Founder of Squid3

See SQUID3's pitch at S-Booster 2023

S-Booster 2023 Final Round

Is Residency Right for You?

Community is paramount in our mission and vision for the space. Our "VSG community" is what makes us unique among all other incubators in Southern California. We bring real teams together and challenge them to participate, share, and cross-pollinate throughout their entrepreneurial journey.

It is in our culture to pay it forward!

Who do we accept?

  • Full-time founder teams (not solo founders)
  • LA-Based - one founder may be remote
  • Post-Ideation - you know what your company will do
  • Technology enabled products and services
  • Initial technology already developed - may be in-house by founders (preferred), may be via outsourced developers
  • Industry agnostic
  • Early-stage - raised (or plan to) external funding (angel,  pre-seed, seed)
  • USC affiliation strongly preferred, not mandatory

Residents are Expected To:

  • Work out of the space 3+ days/week MINIMUM
  • Participate in Founders' Circle + Innovators in Residence Office Hours weekly
  • Contribute to VSG programs and activities regularly
  • In their words, full-time entrepreneurs working under the same roof to bring their ideas to life!

What do we do?

  • Give you office space with access to conference rooms and private offices for meetings and quiet work
  • Provide multiple sources of programming (presentations, legal clinics, access to VCs and angels)
  • Assist you with go-to-market strategy
  • Assist you with product management/development (not technology development)
  • Help you develop your business model/ business plan
  • Connect you with USC resources
  • Connect you with our network of investors
  • Bring you into a creative community of like-minded founders you can learn from (and who will learn from you!)

What don't we do?

  • Take equity in your company!
  • Provide technology resources, machinery or development.

Think Residency Is Right For You?

Apply For Spring 2024

Contact Us

For more information or to schedule a tour, contact us via email: vsg@usc.edu.

Also connect with us on social media:
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Meet Our Current Cohort

Spring 2023/Fall 2023

Measurably reducing deaths related to drug use.

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Multi-Purpose Electronic Coating for Satellites.

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Frictionless Distribution You Control.

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Revolutionizing Property Showings.

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Social Fitness for Accountability and Community.

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Increasing the Efficacy of the Recovery Process.

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Personalized precision medicine.

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Community-Centric Anime Platform

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Image processing at the detector plane.

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Optimizing Clinical Operations and Care.

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Transforming Retail Execution.

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Pioneering the future of avionic safety.

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Oceanside Chat Video Library

Interested in becoming a speaker? Email vsg@usc.edu

Published on April 29th, 2021

Last updated on February 23rd, 2024