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How can I apply to be a Founder?

The UNE SMART Region Incubator accepts applications from new startups that are scaling up and ready to the build the regional economy. Our focus is on agtech, agribusiness and regional startups that make a difference to regional prosperity, health and well-being. There are a number of ways that you can engage with the SRI before undertaking the application process:

  • By direct enquiry
  • After completing of an accelerator program
  • Through one of our UNE student pathways or programs
  • Through participating in one of our sprint and pitch events

Start-up founders that self-identify their suitability to the the SRI criteria can apply to pitch to the Review Panel which meets every second month. The next Review Panel will be held on Monday, 20th May. Similar to an investor’s pitch, this pitch give you the opportunity to present your start-up. The presentation should, at a minimum, answer these questions:

  • What is the problem your start-up is addressing?
  • What is your product or service offering?
  • What are the milestones you have reached so far?
  • How will you achieve your start-up goals?
  • What does your team look like?
  • Why is it important for you to be working with and at the SRI, rather than working within a commercial office space?

Successful applicants will be required to enter into the SRI tenancy agreement, participate in SRI program offerings and contribute to our Agtech and Agribusiness start-up community at UNE.

Think your ready to apply? Here’s a few steps you should take to help you decide:

  1. Work through the UNE SMART Region Incubator Ideation. Ideation is designed to get you thinking about your idea, your market validation and your unique value proposition to help you understand if your idea has legs.
  2. Meet with our Community Manager (CM) to discuss the SRI program, your start-up and the application process.
  3. Prepare your pitch deck. Preparing your pitch deck for the Review Panel will help you think about your suitability for the UNE SMART Region Incubator. Below you’ll find an example of a pitch planner to help you prepare your pitch deck.


Safe to Fail + Safe to Grow

The UNE SMART Region Incubator is built on the understanding that success for our region comes from collaboration and shared resources, which is why we’re not only home to our startups or Founders, we also have great relationships with our Mentors and Innovation Partners to be sure we’re working together to continue growing agribusiness and agetch in our region. We’re supported by the Department of Industry’s Boosting Business Innovation Program, developed to accelerate innovation in NSW by supporting greater collaboration between research organisations like University of New England and their business communities.

Come with Ideas, Come with Skill

With spaces in Tamworth and Armidale and connections across the state, the UNE SMART Region Incubator is the place to jump into the work of building the next generation of smarter AgTech.

Grow in Business, Grow in Life

We’re bringing together remarkable data collected with cutting edge technology, internationally-renowned researchers and our business communities, with a common goal to cultivate a thriving regional economy.

We Are Founders, Mentors & Innovation Partners

It all starts with Founders. Fresh Start-ups, grow into Established SMEs. If you want to be part of the community, but can’t relocate, join us as an Affiliate Founder. There’s a place for you at the UNE SMART Region Incubator. Mentors guide Founders through their growth journey. Old hands and domain experts from business and academia. We’re always on the look-out for more Mentors; connect with us, and help Founders build their business while you excel yours. Innovation Partners give back time and opportunities. They keep their eyes on the bigger picture and keep Founders and Mentors on track. Bring your Corporate opportunities or your community connections. Engage other members with your network; tap into theirs.