BioAccelerate 2020 investment-readiness programme returns with up to £50,000 available for start-up businesses

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BioAccelerate, AberInnovation’s flagship accelerator programme for early-stage businesses and start-ups, across the UK, is back for its third year and seeking participants for its next cohort.

Applications are now open, and close on October 14th.

Participation in the programme is free of charge to successful applicants. In phase one there are two £50,000 awards and six £10,000 awards available for the strongest pitches as judged by a panel of experts in business growth on the final day.

Launched in 2018, BioAccelerate is a programme of training and mentoring which helps entrepreneurs and business founders to bring the best ideas within the biosciences, healthcare, agri-tech, and food and drink sectors to market.

The tailored 13-week programme blends intensive workshops with group activities and hands-on mentoring. BioAccelerate 2020’s first workshop kicks off on Wednesday 21st October 2020 and applications are open until 14 October 2020.

Six graduates of the programme (as chosen by the panel of judges) will be invited onto the second phase of the programme and given further opportunities to develop their business plans and products. This will culminate, once again, in a pitch day, this time to venture capital specialists and investors. The best two propositions will be awarded £50,000 each to help take their innovation to market.

The 2020 BioAccelerate programme is supported by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), part of UK Research and Innovation.

Dr Rhian Hayward MBE, CEO of AberInnovation said: “BioAccelerate is an ideal opportunity for entrepreneurs with a great idea to get the support and help they need to make their dream a reality and create the high growth businesses of tomorrow. With support from UKRI- BBSRC, AberInnovation can now give intensive and thorough investor-readiness support to start ups in food and drink, all aspects of the circular economy, health and agri-tech. I encourage all entrepreneurs and business founders, whether they have incorporated a business already or have not yet quite taken the plunge, to apply to be part of BioAccelerate and get the support they need to build a successful business.”

Brand-new event and conference space within AberInnovation will allow BioAccelerate workshops to take place in a socially-distanced manner and the programme will be delivered using a mixture of in-person and virtual methods. The programme delivery will once again be led by investment-readiness specialists Nurture Ventures.

Jeff Bartlett, Founder of Nurture Ventures, said: “We’re delighted to be supporting the BioAccelerate programme for the third successive year. The year’s programme offers even more hands-on support as well as a new incubation phase in 2021. Our aim is to unearth distinctive innovations that have global potential and entrepreneurs with the appetite to succeed. Past programmes have helped create new businesses including ARCITEKBio, Shire Meadery, Flatpac Farms and Terrafix and supported others like Phytorigins, GreenSeas and Amply so we’re certainly looking forward to meeting this year’s applicants.”

AberInnovation recently moved into its new £40.5m campus development in Aberystwyth. This has been funded by: The European Regional Development Fund, through the Welsh Government; the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (part of UKRI); and Aberystwyth University.