LOS ANGELES — Leap Venture Studio is gearing up for its eighth-annual pet care accelerator. Applications are now open for early-stage pet industry startups to participate in the spring 2024 program, which seeks to connect industry experts with emerging entrepreneurs to provide business guidance and support.

The 12-week program will begin March 4 in London and conclude with a Demo Day, where finalists will present their pitches to industry investors from Mars, Michelson Found Animals and R/GA, on June 10 in New York City.

Selected startups will receive tailored experiences through the Leap Venture Studio program, including access to industry leaders, strategists, technologists, consultants, designers, and previous graduates of the accelerator program. Each startup will be awarded $200,000 for their participation.

According to Leap Venture Studio, 70% of pet industry entrepreneurs who have participated in the accelerator represent underrepresented leadership groups including women and minorities. Supporting diversity, equity and inclusion among emerging brands continues to be a priority for Leap Venture Studio.

Previous graduates of the program have started businesses focused on sustainability, digital pet services, cat care, premium nutrition, senior pet care and veterinary care, among others. The Leap Venture Studio has mentored 45 early-stage pet care companies since its inception in 2018. In total, participating founders have raised more than $200 million in capital following their participation in the accelerator.

Interested entrepreneurs can apply for the spring 2024 cohort through Oct. 15.

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