Converge Start-up Program Pushes Button for Expanded Offer for 2022

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Converge has announced that from today until April 5, university entrepreneurs with “innovative” business ideas can apply to gain access to a funding pool of over £300,000 in addition to bespoke business training, peer-to-peer learning and pitching. training.

In addition, Converge, which describes itself as Scotland’s largest business start-up and entrepreneurship program for the university sector, also said its 2022 program promises to be bigger than ever, with new categories and more places available, increasing from 90 to 100.

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Women-led companies sweep the Converge Awards

From left to right: Converge Challenge 2021 winner Mallikarjun Chityala from Fitabeo Therapeutics; the executive director of Converge, Claudia Cavalluzzo; and 2020 Converge Challenge winner Genevieve Patenaude of Earth Blox. Image: contributed.

“Beginning this year, Converge will both increase its support for very early-stage ideas through its enhanced Kickstart program as well as strengthen its focus on investment readiness for more advanced businesses,” he said.

Applications are now open for a number of challenges in addition to the main Converge Challenge. These include the Net Zero Challenge, which is new for this year, is sponsored by SSE and has been designed to accelerate academic entrepreneurs tackling the climate emergency.

Also new is the Create Change Challenge, whose objective is to support those who have a product or service idea with the potential to become a sustainable business that generates a creative, cultural or social impact.

There’s also the KickStart Challenge, suitable for early-stage entrepreneurs with an innovative business idea that they’d like to test, validate and prepare for before launch. Starting this year, it will support 50 businesses (up from 30 in 2021), giving them the chance to win a £40,000 jackpot, with special prizes for ideas spanning wellbeing, action climate and entrepreneurship.

In addition, this year’s program includes two special awards, one sponsored by Cisco, the Future of Tech Award, and the Rose Award, for ambitious women entrepreneurs, sponsored by the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

Claudia Cavalluzzo, CEO of Converge, said: “In our first decade, we have provided hundreds of dynamic, young organizations in Scotland with a launching pad for growth at a crucial time in their existence, several of which have achieved significant investment. considerable foreign investment to accelerate its growth. internationally in the last year.

Diverse

“As we move into the next ten years, we look forward to receiving requests from a group of people and companies as diverse as ever before to respond to our ever-changing global challenges.”

He also said successful candidates will benefit from an enhanced training program to be provided by Scotland’s leading companies, including key Converge partners Cisco, SIS Ventures, SSE and RBS. “Having seen the accomplishments that many Converge alumni have enjoyed since they participated, I can’t wait to see what 2022 brings in terms of new ideas and innovations,” he added.

Converge, which is based on The Grid at Heriot-Watt University, has also announced that Haseltine Lake Kempner is the new IP partner.

In addition, it points out that it is open to new and potential businesses that will be operational in the 12 months after the award ceremony, which is scheduled for November 3 of this year. He also says that to date he has supported 500 entrepreneurs and the creation of more than 300 companies, with Novosound and Current Health (formerly Snap40) among previous winners.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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