Western Australia is about to get its very first startup accelerator.
RAC SeedSpark is a joint initiative with The Royal Automotive Club (RAC) and Perth-based co-working space Spacecubed, and will offer startups seed funding of up to $25,000, with no strings attached.
The program is targeting startups that are using technology to achieve safer roads, advocate road safety to children and offer motoring solutions for drivers and vehicles, in addition to Western Australian tourism.
There’s also a broad category in which organisers invite startups to “surprise us with anything else you think may make a better WA”.
Entrepreneurs with startups in their early stages, or just simply with ideas, are encouraged to register for the RAC SeedSpark launch event on September 2. From there the program will run a number of sessions aimed at teasing out those ideas, before the winning startups will be selected at a pitch night on September 25.
Spacecubed founder Brodie McCulloch says the Western Australia startup scene has always lacked early stage funding.
“There’s not many other opportunities in Western Australia where you can get access to this sort of funding without giving up equity,” McCulloch says.
“It’s a really good opportunity if you’ve been thinking about the idea for a while. We’ll have a number of events before the pitch stage that will build teams, give people access to mentors and flesh out your ideas.”
He says as the Australian startup ecosystem has grown, Perth’s has too, and with a growing number of startup events organised by Startup Weekend and the Founders Institute, as well as hackathons like GovHack and Unearthed, are encouraging more and more Western Australians to found their own startups.
“All of these events are building a lot of interest,” he says.
“But what there hasn’t been is access to early funding in the market.
The winning startups taking part in the an eight week program during which they will get access to backing and mentorship from RAC to help build, prototype and commercialise their products, access to Spacecubed’s mentor network and co-working space.
They’ll also be taught pitching skills and lean startup methodologies.
For more information visit www.racseedspark.com.au/
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