Accelerators · Startup Accelerators

Sexual harassment from "mentors".

Natalya A Meyer Business with the heart. Trusted guide into new markets.

December 14th, 2019

Anyone heard of sexual harassment from "mentors" at accelerators offering connections in exchange? I have just found out about an ugly incident at one of them where a "mentor" was offering "help" with connections and investors to a startup participant in exchange for sex.

Sheeba Pathak Solopreneur

December 14th, 2019

As a lawyer what are you doing about it if it's a case you're working upon?

Gary MacDougall Technology Entrepreneur in software / e-commerce

December 17th, 2019

Paul Garcia marketing exec & business advisor

December 19th, 2019

It's an unfortunate form of extortion. This is one reason (among many others) you interview other participants or former participants as part of your diligence when considering an incubator or accelerator program. Since most publish every single company admitted, you don't have to ask for a list of references. It's already available to you.


In addition to knowing what kind of relationship the companies have had with specific advisors, you can also find out if there are gaps in skill areas, communication issues, over-promising, facilities issues, and general results of the program.


Sleazy people are all over the place. Hopefully you do your homework and avoid them as much as possible. And don't be shy about speaking out if someone makes those kinds of inappropriate offers. There are probably plenty of people who would take that deal, but you don't have to be one of them.