The Z21 Innovation Fund is a collaboration between the Web Science Institute (WSI) at the University of Southampton and the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP). The mission of the Fund is to accelerate University of Southampton Web startups towards investment and rapid growth and create high-tech jobs in the Solent region.
The Z21 Innovation Fund is seeking applications from potential ventures to create a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), achieve product market fit, and gain traction with users. Applicants can apply for funding up to £6,300 for a 3-month MVP Project. At the end of this period, MVP Projects will present to the Z21 Grant and Investment Panel and will have the opportunity to apply for Pre-Seed funding up to £31,500. The award of an MVP grant does not guarantee progression to the Pre-Seed stage: progression is determined by the Grant and Investment Panel, based on the success of the MVP stage.
All successful projects will receive support from Future Worlds, a University of Southampton on-campus startup incubator which has a valuable external network of mentors, investors and experts. Future Worlds will offer acceleration, helping projects with value proposition, market product fit, and making introductions to mentors. This support will continue through the Pre-Seed stage with help to script, film and edit a professional pitch video. Pre-Seed Projects will be invited to a Demo Day to pitch to investors.
The closing date for applications is 5pm on Tuesday 14 May 2019. There will be further Calls in 2019.
We are only able to accept applications from students or staff studying or working at the University of Southampton. Note that students who have graduated may apply within one year of graduating.
Successful applicants will be notified on Monday 20 May and will be invited to attend an interview with the Z21 Grant and Investment Panel on Tuesday 21 May 2019. If there are particular times on Tuesday 21 May that you would not be able to attend for interview, please notify Susan Davies when submitting your application.
Funded MVP Projects will run from 1 July to 30 September 2019.
If you have any questions about the application, the stages of the Z21 Innovation Fund, the eligibility criteria, and the operating processes, please contact Ben Clark firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about Z21, please visit the WSI website
Gain initial funding to develop your idea and benefit from £150,000 worth of support to accelerate your digital innovation
Funding: Stage one, MVP – £6,300 to develop a Minimum Viable Product (MVP), Stage two (subject to successfully completing stage one), £31,500 pre-seed funding to develop the startup
Matched University in-kind support: c.£37,000 value
Google cloud credits: up to £80,000
Opportunity for further partner benefits worth up to £1m
Future Worlds acceleration activity
− Mentoring on campus and a network of founders, executives and investors
− Startup video production
− Profile on the Future Worlds web platform
− Access to the Future Worlds Accelerator Space
On 28 Nov 2018, the SBC held it’s fourth seminar, ‘The Basics of Employing Staff: What does a start up business need to know?’. The seminar was delivered by employment solicitor Charlotte Allery, from Coffin Mew LLP. Download the lecture slides here: Seminar 28 Nov 2018
On 21 Nov 2018, the SBC held it’s third seminar, ‘Running a business and legal issues: Intellectual property, data protection and managing your contracts’. The seminar was delivered by commercial solicitor Andrew Jerrard, from Coffin Mew LLP. Download the lecture slides here: Seminar Nov 21st 2018
Former SBC clients, Przemek, Maciej and Mauro, have come a long way since first attending the clinic. In 2017, the former University of Southampton students established Researchably, a biomedical search engine using AI algorithms to increase the relevance of results to every researcher. Here’s their original pitch: First Pitch
On 14 Nov 2018, the SBC held it’s second seminar, ‘Corporate Law and Start-Ups: The roles and responsibilities of directors and shareholders in setting up and growing a company’. The seminar was delivered by James Kitching, corporate solicitor for Coffin Mew LLP. Download the lecture slides here: Seminar Nov 14th 2018
On 7 Nov 2018, the SBC’s first seminar, ‘Should you become your own boss?’, was delivered by Clinic Consultant Renold Tang. Steve Brewer, CEO and founder of Infoculture Ltd, also spoke about his experience building his own company, and the assistance he received from the SBC. Download the lecture slides here: Seminar Nov 7th 2018
You are cordially invited to attend a Masterclass on 4th Dec 2017, by Daan Weddepohl, the CEO and founder of peerby.com – one of the most popular sharing platforms in Europe, enabling consumers to borrow products by asking around in their neighborhood.
Daan is alumnus of the Founder Institute, TechStars London and Rockstart accellerator. He won the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge, an international sustainability competition, and most recently the runer-up Ecopalab award for Circular Economy Digital Disruptors by the World Economic Forum and the Forum of Young Global Leaders. Prior to this, Peerby Daan worked as a CTO, Project Manager and Software Developer. He has also worked as an actor, starring in several television series and commercials, as well as in the theater (Fightclub).
Daan will share first hand experinces of starting and developing a sharing platform business, and discuss digital economy and opportunities for sustainable entrepreneurship.
Register to attend this event here.
The Small Business Clinic is pleased to announce the Young Start-up Workshop, scheduled to take place on the 24th of April 2017, between 1300 and 1500 in Building 2A Room 2065 Lecture Theatre H. Please see the URL map (http://data.southampton.ac.uk/room/2A-2065.html) for further instructions on how to get there.
Young Start-up Talent (YST) is a community-based project aimed at young entrepreneurs aged between 16 and 25 years old, who are looking to start their own business. The initiative provides help and support from financials, legal, marketing, research, tech, media training, selling techniques and more. Additionally, there is a prize fund worth £50k available through a pitching process. Visit www.youngstartuptalent.co.uk or come along to the presentation to find out more.
Places are limited and are reserved on a first-come-first-serve basis. Please sign up at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/young-start-up-talent-workshop-tickets-33307724300
The Small Business Clinic has completed another successful year! Throughout the academic year of 2016/2017, we have:
- hosted 6 clinics in Highfield campus
- provided professional advice on business and taxation to 42 clients
- delivered 3 business seminars, attended by 173 people
- received largely positive feedback from our clients and audiences, with an overall rating of 96.3%
We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the staff and student volunteers of the SBC for making 2016/17 a success, especially consultant Renold Tang for his exceptional dedication to the clinic and the clients. We would also like to thank all our clients, and wish them all the success in their future endeavours!
We look forward to helping more entrepreneurs next academic year!
Unfortunately, we have no scheduled clinic dates for the rest of the 2016/17 academic year. We will resume our clinic service in the next academic year (2017/18), in November 2017. Please check this space for updates, or register your interest with us by e-mailing us at sbclinic [at] soton.ac.uk; we will contact you once new dates are available.