Chile’s flagship global startup acceleration programme, startup Chile has invited women startup founders from across the world to apply for S Factory. S Factory is a special four-month long pre-accelerator programme for women founders.

The programme aims to help women founders of early-stage startups from across the world to turn their ideas into viable businesses. Startup Chile announced on its blog that women startup founders of early-stage startups will get $25,000 in equity-free funding, a year-long work visa, and free co-working space. Applications to the pre-accelerator close on May 28.

The names of those who are selected for the programme will be announced on June 21. The S Factory programme will start on August 19. The entry criteria for the programme are these – the startups must be less than a year old and they must be led by a self-identifying female over the age of 18.

A key requirement is that applicants must have the desire to expand and grow in the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Chile. The organisers of the accelerator seek to see detailed expansion strategies and genuine interest in Chile.

What do startups at the accelerator gain from participating in S Factory? The founders can expect a lot of workshops and networking opportunities with startup founders from 85 countries. They will also have access to representatives from a variety of startup and corporate networks.

Deputy Director of S Factory, Sebastian Diaz was quoted as saying by the media that thanks to the pre-accelerator programme for women founders, women’s participation in the programme has increased to 21 percent from 16 percent. He also said that women founded startups survive twice longer than those founded by men. They also sell an average 30 percent more, he added.

Startup Chile is the Chilean government’s flagship entrepreneurship programme. It is dedicated to making Chile Latin America’s leading entrepreneurial and innovation hub.