DoorDash is launching The DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, an education program to promote local consumer packaged goods businesses owned by entrepreneurs who are women, transgender, immigrants or people of color.
The accelerator will provide 50 entrepreneurs with resources, education and funding to bring their products to market for distribution via DashMart, a DoorDash-owned and operated grocery and convenience store. It will consist of a six-week course designed in partnership with Next Street, a small business solutions firm, covering topics such as supply chain management, wholesale vendor relationship management, cash flow management and business development.
In addition to the educational component and a guarantee that their products will be sold via DashMart, participants will receive a $5,000 grant to support their business needs, plus access to marketing and sales support from DoorDash.
Launched in 2020, DashMart delivers fresh groceries, household essentials, local treats and more to consumers throughout the United States. DoorDash already supports more than 400 local and regional producers with DashMarts nationwide.
“Local businesses generate a substantial amount of economic return for the communities they thrive within, while also creating notable job opportunities for residents,” says Tasia Hawkins, social impact program lead at DoorDash. “By developing the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods, we are equipping aspiring entrepreneurs with the educational and financial capital to become wholesale-ready and create an even stronger relationship between local businesses and consumers residing in the community.”
Stephanie Izard, chief restaurant advisor at DoorDash and owner of packaged food brand This Little Goat, worked with Next Street to develop the curriculum.
“Before assuming the role of chief restaurant advisor, I partnered with DoorDash to offer my line of This Little Goat sauces and spices in many DashMart locations across the country,” Izard says. “This is a full circle moment where I was able to help shape the curriculum for this inaugural cohort, especially as I’ve experienced the challenges of launching a packaged product firsthand – including creating a distribution plan and coordinating with manufacturers.”
Merchants are eligible to apply for the DoorDash Accelerator for Local Goods if they are a registered and actively operating packaged food business in New York, Chicago or the greater Washington DC area. Applicants must have twenty or fewer employees, generated less than $1 million in revenue in fiscal 2021 and they must have been in business for at least two years. An active partnership with DoorDash is not required to participate.
DoorDash will accept applications through Friday, April 1. Click here for more information or to apply for the accelerator program.