Leeds start-up first UK business on US accelerator programme

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Leeds start-up first UK business on US accelerator programme
Credit: Shutterstock.com/ ymgerman

JigTalk, a Leeds-based mobile application start-up, has become the first in the UK to achieve a place on a $250,000 US accelerator programme.

The business’ flagship product is a dating app which, it said, puts personality ahead of looks.

Now entering its third programme, the Nasdaq Entrepreneurial Center enables early to mid-stage entrepreneurs set and achieve milestones to drive their businesses.

Milestone Makers received hundreds of applicants, for which only 10 could ultimately selected.

Successful entrepreneurs receive free business mentoring, personal coaching, training and resources valued at around $250,000.

JigTalk CEO and co-founder Alex Durrant is the first UK-based entrepreneur to be selected. Together with co-founded Max Adamski, the pair has won investment from angel investors in both New York and London ahead of the release of the first generation JigTalk app in February.

The app gained some 10,000 users in the 16 weeks following its launch, with a second generation driven by user feedback slated.

The start-up is also seeking fresh investors to facilitate international expansion.

“I’m looking to build connections with the other entrepreneurs and mentors in San Francisco and raise the profile of UK tech outside of London,” Mr Durrant said.

“As we all know, San Francisco and Silicon Valley are the main tech hubs of the world, so I hope that forming these new bridges will encourage and help other young northern entrepreneurs.”