I2N Accelerator returns to help bring big ideas to market

I2N Accelerator returns to help bring big ideas to market

The University of Newcastle is calling on innovators across the Hunter region to take part in its I2N Accelerator program, which takes curious problem solvers and skills them up to become budding entrepreneurs.

Founded two years ago, the I2N Accelerator offers a comprehensive program of activity designed to fast-track growth for early-stage ventures and provide continued support as they grow into later stage scaleups.

This includes mentorship, networking opportunities, peer-to-peer learning, coworking, and a range of workshops led by founders and industry experts.

Delivered by the University’s Integrated Innovation Network (I2N) and supported by Investment NSW through the Boosting Business Innovation Program, the I2N Accelerator is a three-phase program incorporating a pre-accelerator, accelerator, and incubator, providing founders the opportunity to refine and then scale their big idea.

Assistant Director, I2N Operations and Innovation, Siobhan Curran said the expansion of I2N Accelerator incorporates all stages of the start-up journey and reflects the Hunter region’s maturing start-up ecosystem.

“I2N programs have consistently built capacity and established a strong community of founders, mentors, and facilitators,” Siobhan said.

“Now in our sixth year, the I2N is seeing a demand from tech-enabled entrepreneurs to not only determine if their idea has market potential and is sustainable, but to take it to the next level and scale their breakthrough products and services globally.

“This success reflects not only the level of talent here in the region, but the sustained contributions of time, expertise and funding from many supporters who help this community to thrive.”

Siobhan said the I2N Accelerator program would provide access to industry heavyweights and help founders validate, prototype, and then scale their business right here in the Hunter region.

“We connect start-ups to community, customers, coaching and capital to help them accelerate to market. It’s this support that can make or break the success of a new business idea.”

I2N Accelerator will be delivered out of the University’s purpose-built Q Building in the Newcastle CBD – the epicentre for innovation and entrepreneurship in the Hunter.

Pro Vice-Chancellor Industry and Engagement, Mr Warwick Dawson said regional entrepreneurship is a strategic priority for the University and the I2N Accelerator builds on the strengths of the region.

“The continued support of the I2N Accelerator represents our commitment to providing a home for innovation and entrepreneurship,” Warwick said.

“The program will not only level up our community of students and alumni, but those across the region who are testing and developing impactful innovations for people locally and around the world. We’re eager to see entirely new business models generated through this initiative.”

Applications for I2N Accelerator are now open to innovators across the Hunter region and close on Sunday 30 April 2023.


IMAGE | Innovators at the I2N Accelerator demo night.

University of Newcastle

The University of Newcastle is ranked in the top 3% of universities in the world according to two global independent ranking systems, and in the top 200 universities in the world for medicine. 

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