Tandem Product Academy Launches New Cohort to Help Northern Virginia Technology Companies Pivot to Success in a COVID-19 Economy

Free educational program will give leaders of 20 Northern Virginia technology companies essential help to scale their businesses and create economic growth

Amplifier Advisors and a group of university, government, corporate and community partners today announce the launch of a cohort of the Tandem Product Academy to help 20 existing technology companies in Northern Virginia pivot their business models to succeed in the COVID-19 economy. The highly regarded Tandem Product Academy will help the leadership teams of selected businesses find a business model that will sustain these businesses during the pandemic and position them for success thereafter. The program commences Oct. 21, 2020.

This cohort of the Tandem Product Academy is led by a partnership of Amplifier Advisors, an innovation business led by regional technology leader Jonathan Aberman, George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis and Marymount University’s Marymount Intrapreneurship Initiative. It is funded by the GoVirginia, a bipartisan business-led economic development initiative of the Commonwealth of Virginia, with corporate support from Modus Create, Seyfarth Shaw and REQ.  Its community partners include Fairfax County Economic Development Corporation, Arlington County Economic Development Corporation, Manassas County, Greater Washington Board of Trade, Northern Virginia Chamber of Commerce, Northern Virginia Technology Council and Virginia CIT.

The teaching team includes faculty from Marymount University and well-known technology entrepreneurs and investors, including Mark Walsh, Gene Riechers, Ben Foster, Erich Baumgartner, Tien Wong, Pat Sheridan, Elizabeth Shea and Jonathan Aberman.

The Tandem Product Academy will operate virtually with all-cohort classes alternating with individual company mentor sessions. Participating companies will work with the teaching team to create a comprehensive business pivot plan over a four-month period. The program is professionally run and its classes taught at a level that is meaningful for experienced business leaders. The immediately prior cohort of the Tandem Product Academy achieved a participant satisfaction rate of 95%.​  

Founder of Amplifier Advisors Jonathan Aberman said, “The post-COVID-19 economy is punishing for technology businesses that do not have the right product-market fit but, as we can see from regional and national successes, when a technology business has the right fit, this is a great time to be in the technology industry. We want to help a group of promising technology businesses find their best opportunities to pivot what they have built into a market that will be rewarding for the current economy and what’s next.”

Victor Hoskins, CEO of Fairfax County Economic Development Corporation, added, “The region needs more than innovation — it needs inclusive, diversified innovation. It also needs to address the dislocations and opportunities that the COVID-19 pandemic has forced upon us. By helping Northern Virginia technology companies adapt and pivot their businesses to new opportunities, the Tandem Product Academy will grow our economy in new ways and position all of us for a better future.”

The companies selected will not pay to participate in the program. Aberman noted, “Our program operates downstream from our region’s more than 130 accelerators, incubators and co-working communities. It is targeted at experienced teams, as well as emerging teams, who have met the challenge of starting a technology business but are now facing challenges of achieving business scale and resiliency during a difficult time.”

Academy instructor and Ruxton Ventures chairman Mark Walsh pointed out, “This is a tough time and we all wanted to do a cohort of the Tandem Product Academy to make a difference. One of the best things about our region’s technology community is how we all work together. Our teaching team has worked together in many ways over years and we are looking forward to using our collective experience to help.”

Participants must be senior leaders of a business that has a technology product that has achieved some commercial adoption and whose company, within the last 12 months, has done any of the following:

  • Had gross revenue in excess of $500,000;
  • Obtained at least $500,000 in capital from sources other than the founder’s immediate friends and family; or
  • Received at least $500,000 in federal research and development funding.

Interested entrepreneurs should visit the Tandem Innovation Alliance website for more information and to apply. A committee of faculty members and partners will select up to 20 qualifying businesses prior to the first class on Oct. 21, 2020. For further information, visit http://www.tandeminnovate.com/academy.

Media Contact:
Jonathan Aberman, Managing Director Amplifier Advisors
Tel: 703 260 1700

Source: Tandem Product Academy