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Disney seeks next big idea with start-up 'accelerator'

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Got a grand idea that could change the face of media and entertainment?  The Walt Disney Company wants to hear about it.  In fact, the company might even give you some money and help to develop it. 

Disney is now taking applications for what it’s calling the Disney Accelerator, a program aimed at start-ups with transformative ideas in media and entertainment. Ten start-up companies will be selected – and given 120 thousand dollars in capital investment to develop their concepts.

The ten will get working spaces in Los Angeles for three months and have access to Disney’s stories and characters as well as mentoring from executives like Chairman Robert Iger.  

Disney already has plenty of innovations to boast about, but the niche business incubator idea isn’t one of them.  Disney has enlisted the firm Techstars to run the program, which has run similar programs for Nike and Barclays bank.  

Applications for the Disney Accelerator are due in April.  The program ends in late September, when the ten companies will present their product ideas to investors.