SOCIAL INNOVATOR IMPACT HUB AUSTIN ANNOUNCES NINE TEAMS FROM 2018 AFFORDABILITY ACCELERATOR COHORT
Chosen ventures from cohort to mingle with Austin community at Happy Hour mixer tonight at Impact Hub Monroe

(AUSTIN, TEXAS – Sept. 27, 2018; source: Juice Consulting) – Impact Hub Austin, the innovation leaders and social coworking space, announces the cohort for their 2018 Affordability Accelerator. These nine ventures will work with Impact Hub Austin on solutions to Austin’s affordability issues. The local community can meet the nine teams at tonight’s Meet the Cohort Happy Hour, taking place at Impact Hub Monroe from 4:30-6:30 p.m. (located at 411 W. Monroe St., Austin, Texas 78704). At the event, Austinites can hear about how the ventures of the cohort are tackling affordability issues with sustainable and innovative solutions. Ventures range in industry, sector and mission, but all are focused on addressing this rapidly growing issue in Austin. Attendees will be able to meet the cohort, hear about their ventures, mingle with mentors and engage with the broader community of stakeholders who are invested in addressing Austin’s affordability challenges. Light bites and beverages will be provided. To RSVP to the Happy Hour, click here.

“The issue of affordability is just so massive, and we have learned, and continue to learn, so much delivering these programs and building stronger more trusting networks of people that believe in a more equitable Austin,” said Impact Hub Austin Managing Director Ashley Phillips. “I am so excited about this next cohort, the individuals are inspiring and the solutions and projects they are championing have a tremendous amount of potential. I can’t wait to get to work.”

The chosen ventures include:
  • MiraLend – A digital platform that uses peer to peer lending strategies to cover unexpected expenditures; a safer, less predatory alternative to short-term loans.
  • Almost Home Financial – Almost Home Financial (“Almost Home”) is building new financial products for today’s working family by helping first-time homebuyers become mortgage-ready.
  • Built with Humanity – Built with Humanity aims to undermine the economic effect of historically racist urban development and systemic inequities by educating Black and Latinx innovators to lead equity-centered innovation in their communities; also aims to build leaders that can reshape the design of their communities by providing them with education in design, policy and social entrepreneurship as well as support them in venture incubation.
  • The Tiny Heights – A community of houses under 1,000 square feet that can be paid off within 15 years, with aims to reduce the barriers for first-time home buyers.
  • Blue Zero Homes – Their mission is to build safe, affordable and healthy homes for everyone no matter where they live using recycled materials that last for generations.
  • Affordable Housing Data Hub sponsored by Austin CityUP – Aims to provide an immediate prioritized list of currently available locations that best meet tenants’ needs, using information from housing providers, housing counselors, GIS and other sources.
  • Chicon Micro Units – Creating sustainable workforce housing in East Austin focused on serving the creative community.
  • Boomers Collaborative Foundation, Inc. – Their mission is to create a new and sustainable model for senior co-living and neighborhood co-working that allows Baby Boomers to share resources and responsibilities to thrive and age in place in retirement.
  • MEASURE – An Austin-based nonprofit that generates groundbreaking research on racial disparities and empowers communities to improve local agency services to meet their needs.
Impact Hub Austin’s Affordability Accelerator is a three-month program focusing on advocacy, innovation, and financing to keep Austin (diversely) weird and affordably engineered. The program brings together Austin-based teams and ventures to help sustainably address Austin’s affordability challenges. Impact Hub works with civic, tech and real estate industries to create these ideas and solutions and the members of the accelerator cohort not only learn and work together during the program, but also learn and work with mentors, industry leaders and experts. Supporting sponsors for the Affordability Accelerator include Google & JP Morgan Chase, BuildFax, Capital Plus Financial and Noble Capital.

“Our focus on affordability has become more nuanced as we continue to listen to our community,” said Impact Hub Austin Program Coordinator Kelsey Willard. “This cohort’s solutions will look directly at housing but they will also address the interconnected issues why affordability continues to be illusive for so many. These issues include access to traditional financing, transportation and more. With this expanded solution set, I’m so excited to see how this cohort bonds with each other to build out more robust and systems-minded solutions.”

About the Affordability Accelerator:

In the last year, Impact Hub Austin has hosted two accelerators focused exclusively on solving Austin’s greatest challenges. The first cohort in fall 2017 tackled affordability, and in the spring of 2018, Impact Hub Austin hosted a cohort focused on workforce development. This fall, the focus is back on affordability.

This issue continues to be one of Austin’s most challenging. Affordability is not defined solely by a reduction in housing costs. For the majority of Austinites, housing and transit costs are their largest monthly expenses and in this second accelerator, Impact Hub Austin is also producing innovative options that address the intersection of transit, housing and systemic inequities.

Cohort participants will benefit from Impact Hub’s strong network of organizations and experts working in Austin’s housing sector as well as one-­on-one intensive coaching, and thoughtfully developed sessions created to produce sustainable solutions to Austin’s affordability issue.

About Impact Hub Austin:

Impact Hub Austin offers a powerful combination of mission, community and space to support game-changing ideas for social impact. At once an inspiring coworking space, incubator and community hub, Impact Hub Austin connects local entrepreneurs and creatives to a global movement for good. To learn more about the Affordable Housing Accelerator (AHA) or Impact Hub Austin, visit www.impacthubaustin.com.

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MEDIA NOTE:

For press inquiries about Impact Hub Austin or interview requests, please contact the team at Juice Consulting:

Heather Wagner Reed
713 208 3891
Tyler Ostby
210 854 9119

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