The University of Sydney Union’s (USU) leading university startup accelerator program, INCUBATE (incubate.org.au), has selected the next eight startup teams for the Winter cycle.
The startups are working on a diverse range of innovative ideas from vertical gardens, a career transition app to an online social network for beauty products that already has 8,000 fans.
Despite this only being the second intake, INCUBATE is leading the way to help university entrepreneurs focus their startup business models, understand their markets and develop first viable products. INCUBATE help launched eight startups over the summer with one receiving over A$1 million (around US$900,000) in funding.
The winter startups went through a rigorous selection process and will be mentored by successful Australian entrepreneurs including Matt Barrie, CEO Freelancer.com and Michelle Deaker, Managing Partner at OneVentures – a leading venture capital firm in Sydney.
Michelle explains, “As a mentor for the INCUBATE I was impressed by the achievements of the first program graduates with all going on to launch their businesses and several receiving first funding or trial partners.”
The startups receive free co-working space on campus at INCUBATE’s Startup Hub and a share of $40,000 equity-free funding to build and develop their business idea ready to present to potential investors and the media at the Winter Demo Day in September.
James Alexander, INCUBATE’s co-founder and Program Manager says “we select the top entrepreneurs from across campus. We have talented students, alumni and researchers with backgrounds in Engineering, Science, Arts and Law. I’m excited to see how their startups develop.”
Mike Williams, Co-founder of JobsGPS is one of the startups selected, “Incubate will enable us to develop our concept into a commercially viable product alongside some of Australia’s most influential entrepreneurs and business leaders, we’re thrilled to be part of it.”