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Hosted by: AFFOA & MIT Venture Mentoring Service

**Deadline extended to January 16, 2018**

If you have an idea on an innovative advanced fabric product or service that can form the basis of a great company, you should apply for the Advanced Fabric Entrepreneurship Program (AFEP)! AFFOA has partnered with the MIT Venture Mentoring Service (VMS) to launch a year-long pre-commercial part-time program for entrepreneurs with a passion for advanced fabrics. The program supports entrepreneurs by providing access to a wide variety of resources aimed at building commercial value: access to the advanced fabric ecosystem, experienced mentors, technical knowledge, prototypes, customer insights, team building, and other resources all aligned to prepare you to launch your company.

AFEP is aimed at exposing early stage pre-commercial entrepreneurs to the entire range of value building activities in support of their venture:

  • Learning how to perform customer discovery, customer validation, and the creation of a viable business model
  • Establishing the commercial viability and potential markets of an advanced fabric product concept
  • Team building
  • Engaging with industry to define market demands and establish relationships
  • Understanding the best path to market and the timelines involved
  • Identifying technical risk and approaches to mitigation
  • Designing and developing product prototypes
  • Engaging with a mentor team to advance commercialization plans
  • Building commercial interest, teams and support
  • Connecting with the local entrepreneurial ecosystem accessible through AFFOA, (VMS, Martin Trust Center, AFFOA membership, etc) and within Massachusetts
  • Meeting prospective investors and beginning fundraising

Call to Apply

AFEP is seeking 12 entrepreneurs interested in building an innovative advanced fabric business in the US. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until January 16, 2018. The year-long program will launch in February 2018, with monthly sessions held near Central Square, Cambridge, MA. If you are passionate about the world of entrepreneurship and commercializing important innovations in the advanced fabrics space domestically, you are encouraged to apply.

Selection Criteria and Application Process 

The entrepreneurs will be chosen through a competitive process. Finalists will be notified, and in-person interviews scheduled with the selection committee. The selection committee will be made up of a broad range of business, academic, and venture investment professionals.


Participants must be able to commit 8 hours a week (the program intends to minimize on its impact on your day job, thus most activities will be held in the evenings and/or weekends) for the length of the program, and must be able to attend the program in person in Cambridge, MA. There is no degree or minimum age requirement. Participants in the program must have the appropriate citizenship clearance in order to participate in an educational program. Each participant in the program must be committed to starting their company in the US; the program is not intended for launched companies.


Contact Beth Kahn at

To submit an application, click here. To learn more about the program, visit the AFFOA website