Social Enterprise Accelerator & Impact Lab (SAIL)



The goal of SAIL is to empower nonprofit organizations and purpose-driven businesses to be more effective and efficient, and help them develop sustainable business models based on earned revenue. SAIL provides a rich curriculum with content, tools, workshops, and lectures that help social entrepreneurs build and test their idea. Mission Edge empowers SAIL participants to assess opportunities, build a business model, test and validate ideas, launch, and pitch revenue-generating products and services.  

“The SAIL program has taught me how to look at my social enterprise through a new lens, question everything, and pivot when needed.”
— Andrew Keener, TERI, Inc.

Applications open January 7th for 2019 Cohort!

All 501(c)3 organizations and social purpose businesses are invited to apply to SAIL. We are excited to announce that, with the support of local funders, Mission Edge will be highlighting workforce development and health & wellness initiatives through supplemental programmatic opportunities. Applications close Feb. 1st at 5:00 pm PST.

Structure and Methodology

SAIL will take place over the course of 12 weeks. Curriculum will be delivered in five in-person workshops and cover the following topics:

  • Business model validation

    • Lean Canvas and value propositions

  • Understanding your customer

    • Customer data validation, pivot or persevere

  • Financial modeling

    • Revenue models, cost assumptions, and pricing

  • Reaching your customer

    • Operational considerations, marketing plan, and go-to-market strategy development

  • Professional pitch training

    • Crafting, honing, and presenting an attractive pitch for investors

Each participant will be paired with a Lead Mentor who will work with you throughout the course of the accelerator. As business and organizational needs are identified, additional mentors with specific subject matter expertise will be available to support each participant. The accelerator will culminate in a pitch event that offers the opportunity for select organizations to present to potential funders. 

To find out if your organization might be a fit for SAIL, download this pdf for more information. 


SAIL Mentors offer expertise in a variety of areas, including: 

  • Finance

  • Technology

  • Human Resources and Organizational Development

  • Strategic planning

  • Marketing

If you are interested in becoming a mentor for SAIL or would like more information, please fill out this survey, or contact us at

“Mission Edge gave us the lift and the expertise to move our social enterprise forward. We would’t be where we are today without SAIL!”
— Eric Lovett, CEO, Urban Street Angels and 8 West

Program Timeline

If selected for participation, organizations must commit to attend the following sessions:

  • February 20th: Business model validation

  • March 6th: Understanding your customer and defining sustainability

  • March 19th: Developing a financial model

  • April 3rd: How to reach your customer and communicate social impact

  • April 17th: Professional pitch training

  • May 1st: Semi-final pitch round

  • May 16th: Final pitch event

Application Details

Applications are due by 5:00pm PST on February 1, 2019 and will be available here on January 7, 2019.

Note that this application must be completed in one sitting. As such, we recommend reviewing the questions and gathering all needed information before filling out the application. You may review a pdf version of the application here.

The Social Enterprise Accelerator and Impact Lab (SAIL) is a program of Mission Edge, sponsored by Qualcomm, The San Diego Foundation, San Diego Workforce Partnership, Mitchell International, and Cox.