Cox Enterprise's Techstars Social Impact Makes Major Shift

Oct 12, 2020 2:30 PM ET

Originally published by Cox Enterprises

Recently, Cox Enterprises announced the 2021 class of the Cox Enterprises Social Impact Accelerator powered by Techstars, now in its second year, will shift its focus to support for-profit companies that are addressing social justice and systemic racism issues. The three-month program will provide hands-on mentoring, funding and global connections to 10 for-profit, mission-driven companies.

“For decades, people of color haven been disproportionately affected by inequality, systemic racism and social injustice. While these issues have existed for years, they manifested themselves in a way in 2020 that is resulting in a genuine dialogue and desire for tangible reform,” said Barry Givens, managing director of Techstars Social Impact. “We want to be a catalyst for change and leverage the resources and networks available through the Techstars Social Impact program. We are dedicated to helping companies focused on solving social injustice and systemic racism issues to gain the visibility and capital needed to build a better future for this country and generations to come.”

For-profits companies that meet the following criteria, as it relates to social justice and systemic racism, are invited to apply by Oct. 18, 2020:

  • improving voter access and rights
  • criminal justice accountability and reform
  • corporate inclusion
  • healthcare quality and access
  • education quality and access
  •  economic empowerment

“Our decision to highlight social injustice for next year’s class, will prove to be a pivotal moment for Cox, the founders and the program,” said Maury Wolfe, assistant vice president of corporate social responsibility and public affairs for Cox Enterprises. “As a community, we can and must do better to stop hate in its tracks. We hope to bring together a rich diversity of creative thinkers and problem solvers, who collectively will be a force for good and create lasting change.”

Selected companies will be announced in the winter, and the program will kick off on Jan. 25, 2021. During the Techstars Social Impact program, founders will explore strategic mentorships with Cox business leaders and experts to bring ideas to market and boost their early-stage businesses, grow their networks and prepare to pitch their companies at a Demo Day presentation on April 22, 2021.

The Social Impact Accelerator is the second accelerator in partnership between Techstars and Cox Enterprises. The Social Impact Accelerator program was originally developed to source companies making a positive impact on underserved communities, underrepresented people and environmental sustainability.

Cox also funds and supports startups and entrepreneurs through other Atlanta-based partnerships, including Techstars Atlanta, Engage, Endeavor and Startup Runway. 

To apply to Techstars Social Impact, visit For more information about Cox Enterprises' involvement in the venture ecosystem, visit