Tech incubator gets the green light

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Technology start-ups based in Brisbane have received some reassuring news: the Queensland state government has approved two years worth of funding for the University of Queensland’s (UQ) ‘ilab Germinate’ programs.

The ilab program, established by the state Government and now operated by UQ’s main commercialisation company, UniQuest, provides seed funding, team development and mentoring to give the start-ups it supports a greater chance of success in their first few years of development.

Program Director of ilab Leigh Angus commented that the funding approval is a sign of confidence in start-ups and results from the successes that have been achieved in supporting early stage technology enterprises and their founders.

“We are thrilled at the announcement of the next round of funding which will enable us to continue our work to support entrepreneurs and technology start-ups as they develop and grow their ideas,” she said.

Dr Dean Moss, CEO of UniQuest, added that agreement, reached recently with Artesian Venture Partners, would build a $1.5 million “Accelerate Investment Fund” which will invest in a subset of graduates from ilab’s Germinate Program.

“ilab has been achieving excellent results and we are proud to come together with Artesian Venture Partners to build the Accelerate Investment Fund which will offer private investors a vehicle to invest in a number of the early stage start-up businesses coming through ilab,” he said.

Artesian Venture Partners has committed to raising a majority of the $1.5 million fund and will be both investing in the fund itself and inviting private investors to participate.

Jeremy Colless, Managing Principal of Artesian Venture Partners said that the ilab incubator is already producing start-ups that are attractive to private investors and he is looking forward to the results that the collaboration will bring.

“The program and network access that ilab provides to its program participants accelerates and focuses their business development helping create robust, scalable ventures for angel and other early stage investors,” he said.

Since it began in 2000, ilab has incubated some 100 start-up companies and helped then raise over $70 million in grant and investment capital to fund their growth and generate technology jobs.