Frequently asked questions

We are now accepting applications for our Fall 2020 cohort. Applications are due Monday, November 2, 2020. Apply now!

What is The Studio?

The Studio is a six-month, non-residential program that provides fintech founders with unmatched expertise in building a business in such a highly regulated sector. Our team’s decades of experience helps founders minimize the distractions of fintech and focus on what matters: building the best product possible.

Why should I apply for this program?

FVS partners have collectively advised more than 100 fintech firms—including some of today’s fintech luminaries like Dave and Digit—and our Studio program is designed to solve for the fintech-specific issues we’ve seen during our careers. Getting it right in fintech is so much harder than most industries—and it’s much more painful when you get it wrong. The Studio experience reduces the friction of our industry so that more startups succeed, and more innovation reaches the people who need it most.

How does it work?

We make an investment in each selected startup, and then accelerate outcomes through curated events, workshops, and deep-dives with our team. We leverage our decades of collective experience—and a network that spans across incumbent providers, regulators, counsel, investors, and influencers—to help founders effectively navigate their way through the complexities of financial services. Founders get a bespoke experience tailored to their needs; FVS gets a great investment and makes it even better. Visit our “Approach” page to learn more.

When should I apply?

We are always looking for great early-stage fintech companies. While we do run a formal application process—during which we are actively soliciting applications for our next cohort of companies—feel free to reach out at any time.

What if I'm already in an accelerator?

If you’re already participating in an accelerator program, that’s great. While we believe our expertise in fintech is unmatched at this stage, there are accelerators out there that can be helpful with the non-fintech aspects of scaling your business. A good rule of thumb is to define for yourself, up front, what you’d most like to get out of any program you’re considering, so that your needs can be understood and met.

How many companies get accepted into the program?

We make approximately 12 new early-stage investments each year out of the fund we manage. Generally speaking, we run two cohorts of 6-7 companies per cohort, which we have found creates the best peer exchange opportunities.

How much funding is available?

Our initial check size is small—think $50K-$200K—though we seek to deploy additional capital into our portfolio during the program and afterward. We do not lead Series A rounds but we have close connections with the best fintech venture firms who do.

What makes a company ideal for The Studio?

We’re looking for technology companies in the financial services industry who are launching products that have the ability to transform the industry. When making investments, we prioritize firms that demonstrate a high degree of execution speed, initial product growth and user engagement. Our program is well suited to highly technical teams that need to learn more about some element of the financial services industry to be successful.